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Phillip Spurgeon Collection

Identifier: FSUML-2021-02


This collection contains materials related to music conductor Phillip Spurgeon who was a professor at and Florida State University from 1972-2003. Subject matter concerns orchestral conducting practice and pedagogy in the late twentieth century, related to music performed by the FSU Symphony Orchestra from 1972-2003 in the United States and Europe. This collection contains annotated musical scores, along with a few concert programs, memorandums, research notes, performance and rehearsal notes, and correspondence.


  • 1972 - 2020

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers. Users may access this collection by making an appointment with the Music Special Collections staff at

Biographical / Historical

Phillip Spurgeon was born on January 2, 1936 in Pueblo, Colorado. He began his musical studies of the piano at an early age, and graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in 1958, where he majored in piano, with secondary studies in voice and organ. His principal professor was pianist Jack Radunsky. He received a New England Opera Theater scholarship for study at the Berkshire Music School, and traveled to Europe on a Fulbright-Italian grant for study at the Conservatorio Adi Musica di Santa Cecilia in Rome. In 1959 he was the piano soloist at the first Festival of American-Italian Contemporary Music in Naples, and won first prize at the International Competition for Conductors in Besancon, France, becoming the first American to do so.

After he returned to the United State, Spurgeon was award a grant for participation in the Eastern Institute for composers, conductors, and orchestral musicians, sponsored by the American Symphony Orchestra League. Other short-term engagements included the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the New Chamber Orchestra of West Chester. He was the first full-time resident conductor of the Johnstown Symphony from 1961-69. Before arriving at FSU he also served as Music Director for the Midland-Odessa Symphony and Chorale (1970-1971) and the Music Director of the Phoenix Symphony (1969-1971). He served at professor and conductor at Florida State University from 1972 until his retirement in 2003. He lived in Tallahassee with his wife Julia, also a musician and music teacher, and their two children.


58.26 Linear Feet (146 folders 115 11 x 16 folders 31 8 x 12 folders )

Language of Materials



Spanish; Castilian




There are 146 folders in this collection divided into two primary series:

Series I: Annotated Scores

Series II: Papers and Correspondence.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection was given by Phillip Spurgeon and compiled with the help of Professor Alexander Jiménez.

Phillip Spurgeon Collection
Arianne Johnson Quinn, Ph.D.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Allen Music Library Special Collections Repository

FSU College of Music
122 N. Copeland St.
Tallahassee FL 32306
850-644-3982 (Fax)