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To Madame Curie
SSA and piano
Words by, Alice Marie Dunbar Nelson (1985-1935)

This work was written for the Prairie Middle School Bella Voce Women's Choir. When looking for a text, I ran across the poem, β€œTo Madame Curie.” Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson (1875-1935) was a poet who was active in the Harlem Renaissance. The daughter of a former slave, Ms. Dunbar-Nelson attended Straight University and became a school teacher at a time when very few Americans even attended university. She was active in both the African American and Women's Rights movements.

After her teaching career, Ms. Dunbar-Nelson became a successful journalist, a field that was dominated by white men. Marie Sklodowska Curie (1867-1934), originally from Poland, was a naturalized French citizen. She was a physicist and chemist who conducted ground-breaking research on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel prize and the first person to win two. Ms. Curie's work helped soldiers on the front lines of World War I receive urgent medical attention. Her work with radioactive materials ultimately caused her to have health problems including the aplastic anemia that ended her life.

This piece is published through Hal Leonard's Andrea Ramsey Choral Series.

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