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Noted El Paso pianist, Chopin Festival founder Lucy Scarbrough has died at age 92

Lucy Scarbrough
El Paso native and noted pianist Lucy Scarbrough.

EL PASO, Texas -- Lucy Scarbrough, a noted Borderland pianist and founder of the Chopin Festival, has died at the age of 92, friends and family said Sunday.

Last year, the Chopin Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary.

Scarbrough was also recognized by the Polish government for her work in promoting composer Frederic Chopin.

She was given the Decoration of Honor Meritorious for Polish Culture for her efforts in bringing the music of Chopin to a wider audience.

“When she started the Chopin Festival people said 'Oh, I don't know if that will be successful' and she said, 'Do you want to bet I can get people to come and they will love it,'” said her daughter, Ginger Scarbrough.

Ginger Scarbrough told ABC-7 that to date, 37,000 people had enjoyed the festival her mother founded.

El Paso Community College, where Scarbrough taught for 49 years, issued the following statement...

“EPCC is saddened to have learned of the passing of Dr. Lucy Scarbrough. She was an outstanding faculty member and renowned musician. Dr. Scarbrough made an important impact on our college, students and community. Our condolences go out to her family.”

Yasmin Flores, music coordinator for EPCC told ABC-7 that Scarbrough continued to teach up until the spring 2020 semester as Covid-19 impacted the school year.

“She taught through Skype," Flores said. “It was incredible for someone who started the department in 1970, 1971, to still be with us and still be teaching.” 

Ginger Scarbrough said due to Covid-19, plans for the 26th anniversary of the Chopin Festival are on hold, but she hopes to continue the festival at some point this year. She also hopes to host a memorial concert to honor her mother's life.

David Burge

Brianna Chavez

Brianna Chavez is an ABC-7 reporter/producer.



  1. Oh no! Not another WASP! Those poor blm’ers are going to be so disappointed that a fine lady like Ms. Scarbrough was’t a proponent of them. Just a good person doing her best to do good for our society. She showed culture and poise and kindness. But to the unwashed she was just another white privileged woman. RIP Ms Scarbruogh. I attended your concerts and was amazed by your talent. God has received a very talented person to Hi bosom. My condolences to your family.

  2. Terrible, and R.I.P.

    Scant details, I guess the family is being extra private? Age? Educational background? More details about her teaching career?

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