1953 - 2014
Lettie Beckon Alston was born in 1953 and received her bachelor and master degrees in Music Composition from Wayne State University in Detroit, studying composition with James Hartway and piano with Mischa Kottler. She also worked with Frank Murch and Wesley Fishwish. Continuing her education, she was the first African-American composer to obtain a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Michigan in 1983, where she studied composition with Leslie Bassett and William Bolcom. Alston also worked with Eugene Kurzt and George Wilson in the electronic music area. Dr. Alston’s works have been featured widely in eastern and mid-western states, Austria and England. Her music has been recorded on compact disc under the Leonarda, Albany, Videmus and Calvin College labels. Alston’s music scores are published with MMB, Vivace Press and under the assumed name of Lettie Beckon Alston.