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Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

(1875-1912), Composer

Sitter in 6 portraits
Anglo-African composer born in London to an English mother and Creole father, Dr Daniel Peter Hughes Taylor from Sierra Leone, whom he never knew. He began playing the violin at the age of five, joining the choir of St George's Presbyterian Church in Croydon, where H. A. Walters oversaw his musical development and later helped organise his admission to the Royal College of Music in 1890. He came to prominence in 1898 at the Gloucester Festival with an orchestral Ballade in A Minor, followed by his much acclaimed trilogy Hiawatha's Wedding Feast (1898), The Death of Minnehaha (1899), and Hiawatha's Departure (1900). Sir Hubert Parry, the principal of the Royal College of Music described the first performance of Hiawatha's Wedding Feast as 'one of the most remarkable events in modern English musical history'.

Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below

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Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, by Walter Wallis - NPG 5724

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

by Walter Wallis
oil on canvas, 1881
NPG 5724

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, by Harry John Kempsell, for  French and Co - NPG x32771

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

by Harry John Kempsell, for French and Co
photogravure postcard, 1901
NPG x32771

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, published by Breitkopf & Hartel - NPG x135708

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

published by Breitkopf & Hartel
vintage bromide print, circa 1905
NPG x135708

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, by E.O. Hoppé - NPG x132921

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

by E.O. Hoppé
vintage silver bromide print, 7 June 1912
NPG x132921

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, after Elliott & Fry - NPG x135999

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor

after Elliott & Fry
cigarette card, published 1914
NPG x135999



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