Samuel Coleridge Taylor, not to be mistaken with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, was, at the turn of the last Century one of Britain’s most outstanding Composers. Samuel Coleridge Taylor, not to be mistaken with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, the writer, is today almost completely forgotten. However, he was, at the turn of the Century one of Britain’s most outstanding Composers.
His parents were African and English and Samuel was born in Holborn on August 15 1875. He excelled at the violin but late changed his studies to composition. After he graduated he went on to teach music at Trinity College London and at the Rochester Choral Society.
At the age of 22 he achieved fame by composing his most famous work: Hiawatha’s wedding feast. This piece of music was described by the royal college of music as ‘One of the most remarkable events in English musical history’. He was appointed a professor at the Crystal Palace School of Music and Art, he also conducted the Croydon Conservatory Orchestra and the Bournemouth Symphony.
He was also actively involved in promoting the cause of black people worldwide. He frequently traveled to America where he held workshops for black musicians and composers.