Graham Godfrey

(Harold) Graham Godfrey. Conductor, organist, composer, b Birmingham 1890, d Barton-on-Sea, Hampshire, England, 23 Dec 1955; B MUS (Birmingham), D MUS (Toronto) 1932. He studied in England, at the Midland Institute and with Granville Bantock in Birmingham.

Godfrey, Graham

(Harold) Graham Godfrey. Conductor, organist, composer, b Birmingham 1890, d Barton-on-Sea, Hampshire, England, 23 Dec 1955; B MUS (Birmingham), D MUS (Toronto) 1932. He studied in England, at the Midland Institute and with Granville Bantock in Birmingham. He was assistant conductor (to Sir Adrian Boult) of the Birmingham Festival Choral Society and music director of Carr's Lane Congregational Church. He moved to Hamilton, Ont, in 1930 as organist of Melrose United Church and remained there until his return to England in 1950. He founded the Hamilton Symphony Orchestra in 1930 and conducted its first concert 27 Jan 1931. He established and was the sole conductor of the Bach Choir of Hamilton, which made its debut 14 Mar 1932 in the St Matthew Passion at the First United Church. The choir disbanded during World War II but was reorganized by Charles Peaker in 1946 as the Bach-Elgar Choir. Together, the Hamilton SO and the Bach Choir introduced many oratorios to Hamilton audiences. Godfrey's compositions include the cantatas The Forsaken Merman and Pioneers and several anthems and songs.


Further Reading

  • 'Graham Godfrey and Hamilton, Ontario, and a new symphony orchestra,' British Musician, vol 6, Aug 1930