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Emma Lou Diemer (b11/24/1927)

Emma Lou Diemer is a native of Kansas City, MO. She studied piano from an early age, wrote piano pieces as a child, and began to play organ in church at age 13. She decided to be a composer about that time with a strong interest also in piano, taking lessons at the K.C. Conservatory (with Wiktor Labunski).

Her degrees in composition are from the Yale School of Music (BM,1949; MM, 1950) and the Eastman School of Music (Ph.D.,1960), and she studied composition further in Brussels on a Fulbright Scholarship (1952–53) and at the Berkshire Music Center (summers of 1954, 1955).

From 1954 through 1957, Diemer taught in schools in the Kansas City area (Park College, William Jewell College, the K.C. Conservatory of Music) and was organist in area churches. After receiving the doctorate from Eastman she spent two years (1959–61) as composer-in-residence in the Arlington, VA schools under the Ford Foundation Young Composers Project. She wrote many choral and instrumental works while in Arlington.




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