Myra Brooks Turner

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Myra Brooks Turner (13 January 1936 – 7 October 2017)[1] was an American composer,[2] music educator,[3] and writer,[4] who composed for television commercials as well as for musical theatre, piano, and voice.

Brooks was born in Knoxville, Tennessee, to Paul D. and Lillie R. Brooks.[1] She began music lessons at the Juilliard School of Music when she was 12, then earned bachelor's and master's degrees in music from the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.[5] Her post graduate study in piano was with Paul Vellucci in Dallas. She married Ronald Joseph Turner[6] in 1960 and they had three daughters: Stacy, Cheryl, and Teresa.[1]

Brooks taught music at Mercer University in Georgia,[7] at the Maryville (Tennessee) College of Performing Arts, and at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She managed two businesses: MBT Productions and the Myra Brooks Turner Studio of Music in Knoxville, as well as two performance groups associated with her teaching studio: the Beethoven Society and the Chopin Society. Through these societies, she produced seven concerts annually.[4]

Over the years, Brooks directed several church choirs. She served as composer-in-residence for the Birmingham (Alabama) Children's Theatre from 1967 to 1969, wrote TV commercials, and directed recording sessions. She was president of the Camelot Fine Arts Club,[8] and received the Award of Merit from the Tennessee Arts Commission as "an outstanding member of the cultural force of the state of Tennessee who has helped to nurture and develop the arts in Tennessee."[1]

Fluent in French, Brooks published a textbook, Les Gens, Les Endroits et Les Choses (People, Places and Things). For several years, her column “Composer’s Corner” appeared in the National Federation of Music Clubs Junior Keynotes Magazine with her original compositions. She wrote articles about musical research and "Pupil Saver" columns for Clavier Magazine,[9] and edited the Texas Federation of Music Clubs Bulletin.[4]

Brooks composed[10] many piano and vocal works,[11] encompassing at least 72 opus numbers.[12] Her music is published by FJH Music Co. Inc., McLaughlin & Reilly Co.,[13] and Schaum Publications Inc.[4] Her compositions include:


  • Fantasy in a minor[14]
  • Jazz Man Suite[13]
  • Man Speaks Through Music[14]
  • Musical Moods[4]
  • Praise the Lord Jesus Christ[14]
  • Waltzing Windmills[15]
  • Waltz Parisienne

Musical Theatre[edit]


Hear Waltzing Windmills by Myra Brooks Turner


  1. ^ a b c d "Myra Turner Obituary (2017) - Knoxville, TN - Knoxville News Sentinel". Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  2. ^ Anderson, Ruth (1976). Contemporary American composers : a biographical dictionary. Boston: G.K. Hall. ISBN 0-8161-1117-0. OCLC 2035024.
  3. ^ Hixon, Donald L. (1993). Women in music : an encyclopedic biobibliography. Don A. Hennessee (2nd ed.). Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press. ISBN 0-8108-2769-7. OCLC 28889156.
  4. ^ a b c d e f " | Composers & Writers | Myra Brooks-Turner". Archived from the original on 2021-05-08. Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  5. ^ The World Who's who of Women. Melrose Press. 1974.
  6. ^ Who's who of American Women. Marquis Who's Who. 1973. ISBN 978-0-8379-0408-5.
  7. ^ Directory of American Women Composers. National Federation of Music Clubs. 1970.
  8. ^ Music Clubs Magazine. National Federation of Music Clubs. 2006.
  9. ^ "Myra Brooks-Turner's research works". ResearchGate. Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  10. ^ Stewart-Green, Miriam (1980). Women Composers: A Checklist of Works for the Solo Voice. G.K. Hall. ISBN 978-0-8161-8498-9.
  11. ^ Stern, Susan (1978). Women composers : a handbook. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press. ISBN 0-8108-1138-3. OCLC 3844725.
  12. ^ "Myra Brooks Turner". Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  13. ^ a b Office, Library of Congress Copyright (1969). Catalog of Copyright Entries: Third series.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i Cohen, Aaron I. (1987). International encyclopedia of women composers (Second edition, revised and enlarged ed.). New York. ISBN 0-9617485-2-4. OCLC 16714846.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  15. ^ FJH Music Company - "Waltzing Windmills" by Myra Brooks Turner, retrieved 2021-05-08
  16. ^ Who, Inc Marquis Who's (2004). Who's Who of American Women 2004-2005. Marquis Who's Who. ISBN 978-0-8379-0430-6.
  17. ^ Fitch, Donald (1990-01-01). Blake Set to Music: A Bibliography of Musical Settings of the Poems and Prose of William Blake. University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-09734-6.