Founded in 1974  • 
Incorporated in 1986

Creative Discovery
A "Virtual Season" -  DEBOSE COMPETITION-PIANO & THE FINE ARTS - Solo Repertoire

We would like to personally welcome each of you to the forthcoming DeBose Fine Art Series - Competition, a DeBose online national piano competition. It is an exciting time as we continue to grow and adapt, always remaining flexible, motivated, and responsive. The world of technology and innovation in the art of piano/keyboard study and performance is an exciting area to develop and expand traditional creative study and performance. We will continue to collaborate with inspired people, such as you, in settings like this to ensure The DeBose Foundation remains at the cutting edge.

Origins of this endeavor, classical piano performance, have given insight and numerous artistic resources to perpetuate our goals. We are transforming and adapting the way we operate to continuously improve our ability to establish and maintain standards of excellence. We wish to recognize the tireless work of the studio and school professionals. Artistic achievement, through your loyalty and insights, upholds our mission of service. Our Board of Directors and partners are continuing to meet the challenges of today. We are proud and excited about where we are headed.


Our Mission

The DeBose Fine Arts Series is a curriculum standards-based program, providing open access opportunities through exhibition and performance. Signature benchmarks for participants are "outreach" activities, interactive programs, and artist residencies. In recognition of qualitative teaching, traditional and outcome-based education initiatives are defined by multidisciplinary arts collaboration with schools/studios, universities, and related institutions, supported by partnerships and endorsements.

Contact us to learn more about our events, performances, and competitions.
(225) 938-1645

Tourgee Albion DeBose

(August 20, 1894 - July 1, 1971)  •  Career Profile

A native of Gainesville, FL, DeBose graduated from Fisk University with Music Honors. The success of his undergraduate study led to a full academic career, during which DeBose was a three-time scholarship recipient, first, at Oberlin Conservatory, then with the late Carl Friedberg of the Juilliard School of Music, and finally, under the Rosenwald Foundation at the Ecole Normale/Supérieure de Musique under founder Alfred Cortot in 1932.

The program commemorates the legacy of Southern University Professor Tourgee DeBose (African American concert pianist) and former Music Division Chairman. This innovative pioneer, who for more than three decades, motivated scores of students and arts devotees, and whose life's work provided music education for Louisiana's first African-American teachers and professional artists throughout Louisiana and significant cultural centers in the Southern region, Professor DeBose's prodigious career exemplified intense discipline and scholarship in pursuit of artistic excellence.

Tourgee Albion DeBose

A Town Hall debut was successfully achieved in 1933 in New York, followed by appearances as a featured pianist, including New York, Philadelphia, Louisville, Indianapolis, Washington, DC, Chicago, and Atlanta. Many university engagements included Fisk, Howard, Notre Dame, Talladega, Lincoln, and Southern University.

Teaching positions included Howard University, Talladega College (1924 - 1940), and Southern University, the latter at which he spent the greatest number of years (c. 1944 - 1969). Memberships included the B-Sharp Music Club of New Orleans, The National Association of Negro Musicians, and the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

As the Southern University Division of Music Professor, DeBose's influence was considerable as he not only taught piano and served as Chairman of the Piano Department but also served as Head of the Music Division. The level of efficiency of operations and proficiency of teaching and performance reached a high level that attracted teachers and students of great ability and musical talent. He performed annual solo piano recitals as a part of the University Lyceum attractions.

DeBose's work to instill a great desire for perfection was projected throughout the State of Louisiana as he served as a consultant and judge in the LIALO (Louisiana Interscholastic Athletic and Literary Association). Many standards of performance were established under his guidance.

Upon his leave from university duties, DeBose maintained a full-time studio at his home in Baton Rouge, where he taught and held student recitals. He continued to perform with great skill and scholarship to the year of his death, 1971.

The DeBose Foundation Program Inquiries

DeBose National Piano Competition

Myrtle E. David,               Executive Director              225-938-1645

Dr. Thais Perkins, Performance Adjudication Coordinator

DeBose Schools Fine Arts Festival - Competition                  Marie Flowers,                Program Director 

THE DEBOSE FOUNDATION      National Piano Competition
PO Box 64614                    Baton Rouge, LA 70896
Alternate Address
DeBose Foundation, Inc.
1653 Olive Street,                          Baton Rouge, LA 70802                225-938-1645

Service Area: Nationwide

Hours of Operation: Monday - Saturday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

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