BRENT-SMITH, Alexander [Brookthorpe, Gloucestershire, 8.10.1889 - Brookthorpe, 3.7.1950]
Brent-Smith was also an author and educationalist. He received his initial education at King's School, Worcester. Studied privately with Sir Ivor Atkins and became Atkins' assistant organist at Worcester Cathedral. Atkins remained a good friend encouraging Brent-Smith to maintain the flow of compositions at times when he might otherwise have forsaken composition. The music of Elgar, Parry and Stanford made a strong impression on the young composer. Parry was the only English composer to be discussed in detail in his book Studies and Caprices. From 1912-34 he was Director of Music at Lancing College, Sussex where he was remembered as an enthralling lecturer and a brilliant organist. Many of his choral works were written for the Three Choirs Festivals. The projected first performance of the Elegy was delayed by the outbreak of the Second World War. It was revived after many years by the Broadheath Singers and the Windsor Sinfonia at a concert at Eton College 15.9.1984. Among his other literary achievements were a book Studies of the Great Composers and analyses of Schubert's Octet, string quartet in D minor, the B minor and C major symphonies
Opera: The Gentle Tyrant; The Captain's Parrot; Catherine Morland (based on Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey); The Age of Chivalry.
Choral: Worcester Rhapsody (1920); In Glorious Freedom; Hymn to the Nativity; Choral Concerto; Elegy (in Memory of Edward Elgar) for soprano, bass, chorus and orchestra (1939, setting words from the Bible, Hereford Cathedral 10.9.1946); Six Choral Dances; various part-songs;
Symphony: Symphony No. 1 in G minor; Symphony No. 2 in C minor;
Orchestra: Symphonic Studies on a Theme by Giles Farnaby; Divertimento in C major; Fugue;
Concerto: Piano Concerto; Violin Concerto; Concert for five woodwind instruments and string orchestra; Concerto for two violins and strings; Concerto for two pianos and strings;
Chamber: Quartet for woodwind and piano; Quintet for woodwind and piano
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