Juliette Nadia Boulanger (September 16, 1887 –October 22, 1979) was a French composer, conductor, and teacher. She is notable for having taught many of the leading composers and musicians of the 20th century. She also performed occasionally as a pianist and organist.
From a musical family, she achieved early honours as a student at the Paris Conservatoire but, believing that she had no particular talent as a composer, she gave up writing music and became a teacher.
In that capacity, she influenced generations of young composers, especially those from the United States and other English-speaking countries.
Among her students were those who became leading composers, soloists, arrangers and conductors, including Aaron Copland, Roy Harris, Quincy Jones, John Eliot Gardiner, Elliott Carter, Dinu Lipatti, Igor Markevitch, Virgil Thomson, David Diamond, İdil Biret, Daniel Barenboim, Philip Glass and Astor Piazzolla.
Boulanger taught in the US and England, working with music academies including the Juilliard School, the Yehudi Menuhin School, the Longy School, the Royal College of Music and the Royal Academy of Music, but her principal base for most of her life was her family’s flat in Paris, where she taught for most of the seven decades from the start of her career until her death at the age of 92.
Boulanger was the first woman to conduct many major orchestras in America and Europe, including the BBC Symphony, Boston Symphony, Hallé, New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia orchestras. She conducted several world premieres, including works by Copland and Stravinsky.