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date: 25 August 2019

Archer, Violet (Balestreri)locked

  • Linda Bishop Hartig



(b Montreal, April 24, 1913; d Ottawa, Feb 21, 2000). Canadian composer. The daughter of Italian immigrants, she legally adopted the anglicized name Archer with her family in 1940, keeping Balestreri as her middle name. She studied the piano and the organ at the McGill Conservatorium and composition at McGill University (BMus 1936), where her teachers included Claude Champagne and Douglas Clarke. During the period 1940–47 she played percussion in the Montreal Women’s SO, taught theory and piano, and worked as an accompanist. Her career as a composer was launched with the performance of her Scherzo sinfonico (1940) by the Montreal SO. In 1942 she gained additional recognition when Adrian Boult selected her Britannia, a Joyful Overture (1941) for performance on the BBC. That work was later recorded and broadcast to the armed forces in Europe. She undertook further study with Bartók in New York (...

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Toronto, Canadian Music Centre