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Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

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Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912) was a British classical composer who is best known for his composition Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast.

Coleridge-Taylor’s father was African and his mother British. He was first trained as a violin student with a local musician in England, which led to his enrolment in the Royal College of Music in 1890. Instead of continuing his studies in violin, however, Coleridge-Taylor focused on composition, in which subject he was mentored by Charles Villiers Stanford.

The two works for which Coleridge-Taylor is best known are Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast and Twenty-Four Negro Melodies. The former work is based on the poem “Song of Hiawatha” by the American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. The latter work was inspired by performances of the Fisk Jubliee Singers, a black college choral group who sang traditional songs of Africans and black Americans.

Although Coleridge-Taylor died young, at the age of thirty-seven, he left a large number of musical compositions both vocal and instrumental.

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  • relax2music

    Samuel Coleridge-Taylor - Symphony in A Minor Op. 8 (1896) -- http://youtu.be/a7ffcJuIzIY

    7 Mar 2013 Reply
  • headey

    also see Danse Negre

    3 Sep 2012 Reply
  • beezer_b

    Thanks to the people that answered that one for me. The "24 Negro Spirituals" is very interesting indeed. Ta.

    14 Feb 2010 Reply
  • beezer_b

    I've read that Coleridge-Taylor did some specific musical exploration of his African heritage after he'd visited America. Is any of this work recorded? Please drop a note in my shoutbox if you know.

    14 Nov 2008 Reply
  • 2Serenity

    My idol! Thank you for your genius!

    4 Mar 2007 Reply

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