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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Nadia Boulanger

b. 1887, Paris; d. 1979, Paris

Nadia Boulanger, sister of Lili Boulanger, was a French composer, teacher, and conductor. She is regarded as one of the principal compositional teachers of the twentieth century, and one of the first professional female composers. Boulanger taught at many music conservatories throughout Paris. She was a founder and director of the American Conservatory at Fontainebleau and, in 1937, was the first woman to conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra. She also spent considerable time in the United States during World War II; she toured the country as an organist, taught at Wellesley, Radcliffe, and the Juilliard School, and conducted the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.