Sir (Charles) Hubert Hastings Parry, 1st Bt(1848-1918), Composer and historian of music
Sitter in 11 portraits
Prior to the First World War, the public mainly experienced classical music through live concerts, where German works frequently appeared, alongside those of the German-influenced British composers including Sir Hubert Parry. Parry was devastated when war was confirmed. As Director of the Royal College of Music (1895-1918), he witnessed the new generation of composers leave for the frontline and a growing rejection of Germanic music. Parry’s symphonic poem for orchestra, From Death to Life (1914), reflected his despair. Jerusalem (formerly And Did Those Feet In Ancient Times) (1916), set to William Blake ’s poem from 1804, was used by the Fight for Right Movement, which aimed to raise morale and support for the armed forces. However, Parry, who had discouraged his own students from enlisting, felt uneasy about the associated emphatic patriotism.
Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below
after Samuel Begg
relief halftone, published 24 October 1908