Curtis, George H(enry)
- Bethany Goldberg
(b 1821; d Brooklyn, Aug 28, 1895). American composer, music educator, and tunebook compiler. He primarily composed choral and solo vocal music. His best known works are the cantatas Elutheria (pubd 1851) and The Forest Melody (with a text by William Cullen Bryant; premièred 1858), and the anthem Endymion (on Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem; pubd 1857). The short-lived American Musical Association, which supported local composers, performed his works in 1857. For over thirty years, he taught music in the New York public schools (at as many as six schools at a time). Curtis was also an instructor at the New York Conservatory of Music (founded 1849) with William Bradbury and Francis Nash and at the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute. Following the example set by Lowell Mason, Curtis compiled several instructional collections of music including The Grammar School Vocalist (1860), The Musical Monitor: a New Vocal Method for Schools...