African Romances

The Life & Music of Samuel Coleridge Taylor (1875-1912)

by Robert Clements

On 1 September 1912, the African-English composer, conductor, teacher & role model Samuel Coleridge Taylor (the hyphenated version Coleridge-Taylor more commonly used is an affectation adopted by the composer, allegedly following a printer's typographical error) died in Croydon (a suburb of London, England) from pneumonia exacerbated by chronic overwork. He had just celebrated (on the previous 15 August) his thirty-seventh birthday.

This essay - originally posted on 1 September 1997 to commemorate the the eighty-fifth anniversary of the composer's death - is therefore a short biography of the composer & a piece of unabashed propaganda on behalf of his music. The essay is (basically) chronological; &, for ease of downloading, has been broken up into a number of sections, all accessible from this page (continuity links have also been included at the end of each section). Three sections are biographical (more-or-less).

These are:

... while the other two sections are short essays on subjects relevant to SCT's life & music: This essay is not meant to be the highpoint of SCT scholarship; & has been written by a (fairly informed) music lover to communicate his enthusiasm for SCT's music.

The website of HNH International - who's Marco Polo British Light Music line includes a fine selection of short orchestral pieces by SCT (8.223516... with the RTE Concert Orchestra, Dublin conducted by Adrian Leaper) - also includes a short biography of the composer on its website, which can be reached by hitting the identified link.

(Rushing this essay into HTML means I haven't really had the chance to track down any other useful SCT links... if anyone knows of similar pages worthy of inclusion, just drop me a line)

(As always, the information included in this essay is copyright 1997; but so long as the usual net protocols are followed by recyclers, all linking/quoting/extracting/whatevering is happily encouraged)

In reading this essay, please try to remember one thing: SCT was a proudly popular artist, who found in his audience his most consistent inspiration. So - no matter how my thick my prose may be - do try to enjoy....

Page created by Robert Clements 
files last updated: 18 September 1997
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