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Frederic Herbert Wood (1880–1963) For 45 years organist of Blackpool Parish Church, Frederic H. Wood (1880–1963) was a composer whose contribution to our native school of romantic organ music deserves wider recognition, in particular for his colourful suites inspired by the English countryside, of Northumberland, of Kent, and of the downland. The scenes evoked bear the strong imprint of the past – from venerable bridges and cathedrals to Roman ruins, prehistoric earthworks and Stonehenge – amidst river and valley and orchard captured in different moods and times of the day. There is plenty of craft in this music too: stirring, romantic harmonies and varied textures generously registered, with a purposeful sense of form giving strength and direction to the attractive pictorial element. The range of Wood’s other interests, which included spiritualism and the speech of ancient Egypt, suggests a fascinating individual, who was also a Doctor of Music from Durham University and a noted lecturer and adjudicator.
Benjamin Woodgates (b.1986)A BAFTA Breakthrough Brit finalist in 2015 and winner of both an ASCAP Foundation Award and the Oticons Faculty International Film Scoring Award, Benjamin Woodgates has received acclaim for his work across a breadth of media spanning film, art installation, television, videogames and theatre. In addition to his work as a composer, Benjamin has also been involved with a wide range of collaborative and crossover projects, from completing Percy Grainger’s Piano Concerto from the composer’s sketches to arranging the music for a unique collaboration between the National Symphony Orchestra of Colombia and deep-house producer Jamie Jones. Music for voice has always played an important part in Benjamin’s career, and recent choral works include commissions from St Paul’s Cathedral and Choir & Organ Magazine, and a work composed especially for the London Festival of Contemporary Church Music. He has conducted choirs in performances across Europe, Japan, Canada and the USA; and has directed ensembles including the Hallé Youth Choir, Oxford University’s Out of the Blue and the West End Phantom of the Opera cast. http://www.benjaminwoodgates.com
Basil Harwood (1859–1949)Born on 11th April 1859 and educated at Charterhouse and Trinity College, Oxford, Basil was appointed organist at St Barnabas’, Pimlico in 1883, moving to Ely Cathedral four years later. He returned to Oxford in 1892 and during his seventeen years there he played an important role in university music including being the first Conductor of the Oxford Bach Choir which he helped to found in 1896. His chief editorial work concerned the publication of the Oxford Hymn Book in 1908.
Joseph Haydn (1732–1809)
Haydn Wood (1882–1959)Like his near contemporary Eric Coates, Haydn Wood was a master of finely crafted light music that over the years has retained an undiminished popularity for its period appeal. A versatile musician, in his early years he showed equal promise as a composer and as a virtuoso violinist, later also becoming well-known as a conductor who broadcast regularly on the BBC. Though renowned for sentimental ballads such as A Brown Bird Singing, Bird of Love Divine and Roses of Picardy, he was also a prolific composer of concertos, suites and overtures, and of smaller scale instrumental works, including the attractive items available from the Stainer & Bell archive below.