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Charles Villiers Stanford

Charles Villiers Stanford Photo © W&D Downey/Royal College of Music
1852 - 1924


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Charles Villiers Stanford was a composer and teacher, who with Parry rejuvenated English musical tradition in Victorian and Edwardian eras * Studied at Cambridge University and in Leipzig and Berlin * In decade from 1875 achieved reputation with prize-winning Symphony No.1 and premiere of opera The Veiled Prophet in Hanover * Appointed professor at both Royal College of Music (1883) and Cambridge University (1887), holding positions until his death * Exercised great influence on craftsmanship of generations of composers * Pupils included Benjamin, Bliss, Bridge, Howells, Holst, Ireland, Goossens and Vaughan Williams * Promoted opera as an important form and won considerable popular success with Shamus O'Brien * Much-loved choral works which set new standards of achievement, including Three Motets and Services in G and Bb * Buried next to Purcell in Westminster Abbey

Works by Charles Villiers Stanford include:
Shamus O'Brien (1896) Romantic comic opera in two acts
Requiem (1897) for soloists, chorus and orchestra
Songs of the Sea (1904) for bass-baritone, male or mixed chorus and orchestra
Three Motets (1905) for unaccompanied chorus
"One of the fathers of the English renaissance, Stanford was so highly acclaimed as teacher of composition that his fame in this field overshadowed his greatness as a composer." — Music and Musicians
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