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date: 26 January 2020

Farmer, Henry Georgelocked

  • Israel J. Katz

Extract

(b Birr, Ireland, Jan 17, 1882; d Law, Scotland, Dec 30, 1965). British musicologist, orientalist and conductor. He studied the violin, the clarinet, the piano and harmony, the last two with Vincent Sykes, organist of St Brendan's Church, Birr, where Farmer was a chorister. In London he studied with H.C. Tonking, Mark Andrews and F.A. Borsdorf and in 1895, while on holiday there with his father, he heard the Royal Artillery Orchestra conducted by Ladislao Zavertal; impressed by its performance, he joined as a violinist and clarinettist and after years of private study he served as its principal horn player, 1902–10. Forced by ill-health to abandon the horn, he began a conducting career at the Broadway Theatre, London (1910–13), while teaching music at various county council schools; he also founded the Irish Orchestra in London, which performed at the National Sunday League Concerts under his direction (...

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