Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, (born Aug.
15, 1875, London, Eng.—died Sept. 1, 1912, Croydon, Surrey), English
composer who enjoyed considerable acclaim in the early years of the
Coleridge-Taylor’s father, thwarted
in his attempts to progress as a physician—through apparent racial
prejudice—deserted his son and English wife and returned to his
native West Africa. At the age of five Samuel began playing the
violin and joined the choir of a Presbyterian church in Croydon,
where H.A. Walters guided his progress and arranged his admittance
to the Royal College of Music in 1890.
While still a student he published
some anthems, but his creative gifts were more apparent in various
colourful instrumental works. In 1896 he became conductor of an
amateur orchestra in Croydon and began teaching, guest-conducting,
recital work, and judging at music festivals to support his wife and
two children. He also continued to compose and was an early success
at the Gloucester Festival with an orchestral Ballade in A Minor
(1898), which was followed by his outstanding achievement, the
Longfellow trilogy for solo voices, chorus, and orchestra of
Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast (1898), The Death of Minnehaha (1899), and
Hiawatha’s Departure (1900). In these and numerous other works,
including incidental music, choral works, and a violin concerto
(1911), influences from Dvořák, Tchaikovsky, and Grieg appear along
with a spontaneity derived from appreciation of African American
folk music, in which Coleridge-Taylor was a pioneer. He was well
received in the United States, where he toured in 1904, 1906, and
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Scenes
from The Song of Hiawatha (In 4 Parts, Complete)
I. Hiawatha's Wedding Feast; II. The
Death of Minnehaha; III. Overture to Hiawatha; IV. Hiawatha's
Departure. The 2014 radio broadcast of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's
four-part Scenes from The Song of Hiawatha (complete), as performed
in March 2013 by The Longfellow Chorus, with Angela Brown, soprano,
Rodrick Dixon, tenor, and Robert Honeysucker, baritone. Commentary
by Longfellow Chorus artistic director Charles Kaufmann.
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Hiawatha's
Concert: Nature's Bounty
Date: Saturday 23 March 2013, Knox Church, Dunedin, New Zealand
Conductor: David Burchell
City Choir Dunedin
Tenor: Matthew Wilson
"Hiawatha's Wedding Feast"
City Choir Dunedin celebrated its 150-year musical heritage (1863 -
2013) with the Victorian masterpiece "Hiawatha's Wedding Feast", one
of the trilogy of cantatas that make up Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's
"Scenes from the Song of Hiawatha". The text for this cantata,
describing the splendours of an American-Indian wedding banquet, is
from the well-known epic poem "The Song of Hiawatha" by the American
poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
The work rivaled "Messiah" and
"Elijah" in popularity amongst English-speaking choirs in the early
decades of the 20th century. Its instant popularity is unsurprising
− the music is bold, colourful and inventive within its late
Victorian idiom; the text, though something of a hindrance to the
composer due to its lumbering trochaic metre, was already widely
known, and although the poem and its sentiment may now seem rather
dated, the music retains its sparkle and vigour and is great fun to
sing. The tenor aria 'Onaway! Awake beloved' is justifiably lauded
as a highlight of the romantic tenor repertoire.
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor - Hiawatha Overture
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor - Romance
in G for violin and orchestra
Soloist: Lorraine McAslan
Nicholas Braithwaite conducts the London Philharmonic.
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Ballade
for orchestra Op.33
Commissioned in 1898 by the Three
Choirs Festival of Britain thanks to pressure from Edward Elgar, the
Ballade for orchestra Op.33 represents an important early milestone
for the English composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912). It's a
work full of wonderful high-spirits, passion and warmth. Above all
it's a harbinger of what might come, given time and opportunity. It
is played here by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
conducted by Grant Llewellyn.
Samuel Coleridge Taylor - The Death
Elsie Suddaby, soprano
Howard Fry, bass-baritone
George Baker, bass-baritone
Royal Choral Society and Orchestra
Dr Malcolm Sargent - conductor
Recorded 17 December 1930 and 28
The "Scenes from the Song of
Hiawatha" received its first complete performance by the Royal
Choral Society, conducted by Coleridge Taylor himself, in 1900.
In 1924 the choir presented the
first of a series of fully staged versions of the trilogy,
"Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast", "The Death of Minnehaha" and "Hiawatha’s
Departure", performed by more than 1,000 ‘braves’ and ‘squaws’ in
extended seasons each June until 1939.
Audiences travelled in costume from
the London suburbs and further afield, fired with an almost
fanatical enthusiasm for Coleridge Taylor’s sentimental melodies and
the spectacular Albert Hall productions, which included a vast
painted backdrop, waterfalls, wigwams, peace-pipes and various other
essential ethnic trappings.
This recording is very nearly
complete. Much of the orchestral introduction is omitted to fit the
first section on to one side of a record. Several linking passages
were also omitted at the end of sides..
The Royal Choral Society's staged
performance ran for two weeks, starting 9th June. It featured a
"cast" of fourteen soloists who alternated performances. They
included Elsie Suddaby and Howard Fry, but not HMV stalwart George
Baker. This recording, and its companion "Hiawatha's Wedding Feast"
appear to have been in the nature of rehearsals.
Original transfers by CHARM, King's
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor - African
Suite: Danse nègre
African Suite, Op. 35 (1898)
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Petite Suite de Concert
Reynard Burns appears here as guest conductor of the Island Symphony
Orchestra, in a performance of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's Petite
Suite de Concert. Coleridge-Taylor was an English composer of
African descent who lived from 1875-1912.
The Island Symphony is based in Suffolk County NY and is directed by
Dr. Howard Cinnamon.
Coleridge Taylor Samuel, Violin
Concerto 2nd movement
Place: Mexico D.F. Palacio de Bellas Artes
Orchestra: Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional (OSN)
Violin Solo: Mykyta Klochkov
Conductor: Hansjorg Schellenberger