Jamaican born English composer Frederic Hymen Cowen (1852-1935) is best remembered for his light orchestral music, where his gifts for graceful melody, and flights of fancy are shown to best advantage, and include The Butterfly's Ball, Indian Rhapsody, and The Language of Flowers. He also composed six symphonies, the third of which, entitled 'Scandinavian', first brought him to international recognition. In his time he was well-regarded as a song writer and was sometimes called 'the English Schubert', although songs such as 'The Better Land', 'The Children's Home', 'Border Ballad' and 'The Promise of Life' have led modern critics to refer to much of his efforts in this field as 'ballad-mongering'. His operas were all relative failures, but his oratorios and cantatas were the staple diet of choral societies throughout Victorian and Edwardian England.
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Cowen, Frederic Hymen (1852-1935)
Brief biographical sketch and Naxos discography.
Frederic Hymen Cowen: Butterfly's Ball, Indian Rhapsody and Symphony 3 'Scandinavian'
CD review with detailed biography from the MusicWeb Classical Reviews, February 2002.
Last update:May 21, 2014 at 19:55:20 UTC