Virgil Thomson (November 25, 1896 - September 30, 1989) was an American composer from Missouri, whose rural background gave a sense of place in his compositions. He studied with Nadia Boulanger, and later established himself in New York City, as a peer of Aaron Copland and was also a music critic for the New York Herald-Tribune from 1940 through 1954.
In the 1930s, he worked as a theatre and film composer. His first film commission was The Plow That Broke the Plains, sponsored by the United States Resettlement Administration. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1949 with his film score for Louisiana Story.
He worked with Gertrude Stein on the operas Four Saints in Three Acts and The Mother of Us All .