Four English Dances

At a Court meeting on 5th May 1925 it was proposed that Sir Frederic Hymen Cowen (1852-1935) be offered the Honorary Freedom of the Musicians' Company in recognition of his long and distinguished services to British Music. The ceremony of Cowen's admission was carried out during the next Court meeting in July 1925.

Cowen (born Hymen Frederick Cohen in Kingston, Jamaica) was a child prodigy composer and pianist who moved to England at age 4 and produced many published works (the first of them at aged 6 years old), but will be remembered mostly for light orchestral pieces. Click Here for Cowen's Wikipedia entry.

The Company holds an Autograph Manuscript Score for full orchestra, of Cowen's 1896 composition: a Suite of Four English Dances in the Old Style, set No. 1.

The MSS has been bound into a hard black cover (see left) by the Publisher Novello & Co. Ltd. The front page title "FOUR ENGLISH DANCES" is printed on a separate piece of paper and has been stuck over whatever was originally there. Click image to expand.

The Four Dances are:

1 - Stately Dance

2 - Rustic Dance

3 - Slow Dance (or Graceful Dance)

4 - Country Dance (or Lively Dance!)        [parentheses as per score]

 

The final page of the score is dated April 15th, '96.

 

Toward the end of his life, the MSS was donated to the Musicians' Company by Cowen which was reported at a Court meeting in January 1934. A letter of thanks was sent to the composer and his response is included on the inside front page of the bound manuscript. MB11, p.248 also refers - Click Here.

 

Another of Cowen's Manuscript Scores (1914 - The Language of Flowers) is held by The Company and this can be seen by Clicking Here

 

 

Click an image below to enlarge and scroll through the score. Click on 'Go to link' to expand individual pages further.

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