Edgar Bainton

1880 - 1956



For many people, the anthem And I Saw a New Heaven,
a classic of English church music, is all that is known today by the
composer, pianist, conductor and teacher, Edgar Bainton. And yet, if
we look back sixty years to the many competitive festivals and choral society
events that were a vital part of British music-making, his part-songs
and choral works were part of the backbone of the repertoire.

His father was a Congregational minister who later moved with his
family to Coventry. His abilities in music and at the piano
were noticed
early; he made his first public appearance as solo pianist
at 9 years
of age, and at 16 he won an open scholarship to the Royal
of Music to study piano with Franklin Taylor and theory with
Davies. In 1899 he gained the Wilson Scholarship to study
with Sir Charles Villiers Stanford, and thus became one of
the rising
generation of British composers destined to contribute
to the English Musical Renaissance. In 1901 Bainton was
appointed piano professor to the Newcastle-upon-Tyne
Conservatory of Music, and after over thirty years of
service emigrated to Australia to take up the Directorship of the Sydney

© Michael Jones