b. 1953 Person Name: Evelyn Simpson-Curenton, b. 1953 Hymnal Title: African American Heritage Hymnal Arranger of "[Take courage, my soul, and let us journey on]" in African American Heritage Hymnal Evelyn Simpson Curenton (born 1953) is a leading African-American composer, pianist, organist, and vocalist.
Simpson Curenton began piano lessons at age 5, began to perform with the Singing Simpsons of Philadelphia, a family group, and earned a B.M., Music Education and Voice from Temple University.
She has been commissioned to write works for the American Guild of Organists, George Shirley, the late Duke Ellington, and her sister, the late Joy Simpson, arranged music for Kathleen Battle, Jessye Norman, and the Porgy and Bess Chorus of the New York Metropolitan Opera, and has performed with musical organizations such as Philadelphia's National Opera Ebony (later renamed Opera North).
Based in the Washington, D.C., area, Curenton is Music Director of the Washington Performing Arts Society's Men and Women of the Gospel and an associate of the Smithsonian Institution. She has given lectures and participated in workshops on early 18th-century black religious music and the music of African-Americans during the Civil Rights era.