(1869-1944) Will Marion Cook studied violin at Oberlin College when he was 15. He also attended the National Conservatory of Music in New York, where he studied with Dvorak and John White. He played professionally at Oberlin, but his solo career was short-lived. He also wrote musicals but is best-known for his songs that represent an original, distinctive handling of Black folk elements in song composition. He collaborated with Paul Laurence Dunbar while composing the musical sketch comedy Clorindy, the Origin of the Cakewalk (1898), which was Cook’s first composed score.
Cook, William Marion, "In Dahomey" (2017). Dunbar Music Archive. 362.