A 186th GARLAND OF BRITISH LIGHT MUSIC COMPOSERS
To begin with, a mention for Peter Young, a
ballad composer active (I think) around the time of the Second World
War – not a "one work" composer, as at least four of his rather
sentimental songs enjoyed considerable popularity, I Give Thanks
For You, O Blessed Day, You Will Return and Hope and Pray.
Now for two composers best remembered (if at all, these
days) for their chamber music. Henry Waldo Warner (1874-1945)
was born in Northampton and studied at the Guildhall School. A viola
player, he was active in London orchestras and, for many years, with
the London String Quartet. Of his many chamber compositions, some were
light in character, like the Suite in G in Olden Style and The
Pixy Ring, both for string quartet. But he produced widely in other
directions also: at least a hundred songs for either chorus or solo;
an early comic operetta, The Royal Vagrants, which achieved production
in 1899; the four pieces Opus 44, The Clown, The Reef, An Irish Dell
and The Road Breaker; and the orchestral suites The Broad
Highway: Sketches From a Tramp’s Diary, in no fewer than seven movements,
and The Elfin Dances.
The roughly contemporary Alfred Michael Wall,
born in 1875, composed, besides his chamber music, a number of orchestral
works. Some of these were lightish, like the concert overture Thanet,
which was played at the Henry Wood Proms, Bagatelles and a suite
for strings, Recreations.
Now for three composers all similarly called. Marmaduke
Brown had his operetta Five Hundred Francs, briefly aired
at The Vaudeville in 1885; Michael Brown’s Is There Intelligent
Life on Earth? was produced at Brighton in 1964; and conductor George
Browne’s Do Somethin’ Addy Man, described as a "London
Caribbean musical", appeared in 1962 at Stratford East.
Finally, brief mentions for Anthony B Smith-Masters
for his post-World War II radio series and for Veronica Brown
for her piano pieces for children, including Six Clock Pieces
(1959) and from the early sixties, several items for six hands one piano.
Philip L Scowcroft
Philip's book 'British Light Music Composers' (ISBN 0903413 88 4) is
currently out of print.