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Michael Begg, active particularly in the 1960s and 1970s, was a BBC producer. He contributed songs to the musical Mr Polly, after H.G. Wells, produced in Bromley (Kent) in 1977. His genre piece Mexico Grandstand was published in 1970 in an arrangement by "Edrich Siebot" (Stanley Scott-Masters) for brass band. This leads us to a present-day composer for wind and brass bands; Kenneth Hesketh, whose works include Masque, known in brass and wind versions and Dancerie for wind band.

The current Director of Music of the Band of the Royal Corps of Signals, Paul Morrell has, besides marches, composed a Dance of the Messenger, an attractive piece sporting considerable Irish colour.

Two song composers, now; Roy Teed (1928-), who lives and teaches in Colchester, has composed many songs, some of them lightish, like April Morning and Song For Sunrise (both dated 1955) and Three Jolly Gentlemen (1957). Then there was the ballad composer John Gair ("Jack") Robson (1885-1957), responsible for The Cheviot Hills – but details about him are difficult to find. And one film/TV composer before we revert to earlier times: Julian Stewart Lindsay, whose scores include that for the BBC2 documentary Workers at War, shown in 1999.

Theo de la Riviere was a viola player with the Bournemouth Municipal Orchestra in Dan Godfrey’s day and like so many others in that orchestra – Cecil White; Montague Birch and Byron Brooke came to mind – contributed light orchestral miniatures for his colleagues to perform. George Job Elvey (1816-93) was Organist of St George’s Chapel, Windsor for almost half a century and was known in his day for his church music – chants, anthems, services and hymns – but, like so many other church musicians, many of whom we have saluted in these Garlands, he composed secular music, often lightish in character – songs and the occasional orchestral novelty like the gavotte A La Mode Ancienne, played at the Henry Wood Promenade Concerts in 1898.

Philip L Scowcroft

June 2001

Enquiries to Philip at

8 Rowan Mount



Philip's book 'British Light Music Composers' (ISBN 0903413 88 4) is currently out of print.

E-mail enquiries (but NOT orders) can be directed to Rob Barnett at

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