Frank Blachford

Frank (Edward) Blachford. Violinist, teacher, conductor, composer, b Toronto 28 Dec 1879, d Calgary 24 Jun 1957; ATCM 1897. He studied at the TCM with Bertha Drechsler Adamson, graduating in 1897, and continued at the Leipzig Cons with Hans Sitt and Carl Reinecke.

Blachford, Frank

Frank (Edward) Blachford. Violinist, teacher, conductor, composer, b Toronto 28 Dec 1879, d Calgary 24 Jun 1957; ATCM 1897. He studied at the TCM with Bertha Drechsler Adamson, graduating in 1897, and continued at the Leipzig Cons with Hans Sitt and Carl Reinecke. After graduating in 1901 with the Helbig prize he studied in Geneva with Henri Marteau and in Berlin. He returned to Canada in 1901 and taught at the TCM until his death. He was concertmaster of the Conservatory Orchestra 1906-8, continuing 1908-18 with the Welsman TSO, and was in the first violins of the TSO 1932-46. His solo career, in concerts and broadcasts, included tours of Ontario and Canada and appearances with the Welsman orchestra and in 1923 with the New Symphony Orchestra. He was the founder in 1907 and first violin of the Toronto String Quartet, a member 1902-5 of the Schumann Trio and 1926-8 of the Conservatory Trio, and conductor 1914-25 of the Conservatory String Orchestra and 1920-30 of the Victoria College Orchestra. In the late 1920s he produced and conducted programs for local radio and in 1932 he formed the Blachford String Symphony, a group of 16 TSO musicians which performed in concert and on the CRBC (later CBC) network. He was president of the ORMTA 1936-7. In later years he concentrated on teaching, at the TCM and in public schools. His pupils included Albert Aylward, Jack Montague, and Harvey Perrin. Blachford died during an examining trip for the RTCM. His compositions include violin teaching pieces and transcriptions for quartet or orchestra of baroque and romantic music. Concert works included Idylle and Romance for solo violin and strings and Suite from the Ontario Northlands for orchestra. He also wrote a number of songs, a 'Serenade for men's voices,' and an anthem, 'He Was Despised'.

Writings

Frank Blachford, 'A Haydn quartette,' CQR, vol 2, Feb 1920

First 20 Lessons (F. Harris 1929)

Blachford Violin Class Book (GVT 1949)

Tunes for Strings (F. Harris 1953)


Further Reading

  • 'Musical bibliographies of Canadian composers - Blachford,' Toronto Globe, 17 Oct 1936

    'Conservatory Portrait Gallery - Mr. Frank Blachford,' CQR, vol 15, Aug 1933