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Hubert Clifford

Biography

Born: 1904; Gipsland, Victoria   Died: 1959; England  
Hubert Clifford was born in 1904 in Victoria, Australia. He showed two keen interests growing up, science and music, and ended up simultaneously pursuing a degree in chemistry at the University of Melbourne and studying at the Melbourne Conservatory of Music. The latter won out and by his late twenties, he was well known as a conductor in Victoria, making a particularly strong impression with the local opera company. He studied composition with Read more Fritz Hart, upon whose advice he emigrated to England to study with Ralph Vaughan Williams. Clifford worked as a music teacher and was later employed by the BBC as a music and broadcasting official with responsibilities including the performance of music for broadcast by short wave to distant corners of the British Empire. Clifford's first major composition was A Kentish Suite (1935), a five-movement work intended for student orchestras. Ebullient, extrovert, and fully tonal, this piece was inspired by seventeenth century religious music and also in folk songs associated with the Kentish countryside. A much more serious and complex work, the Symphony 1940, followed at the outset of the war, its two years of composition concluding with music written during the earliest German air raids upon London. In its vitally rhythmic opening and closing movements, the symphony showed the strong influence of William Walton, to whose work he professed great affinity. The symphony was presented by the BBC in fragmentary form, its four movements recorded for broadcast at different times and under different conductors during and immediately after the war. By then, Clifford had gone to work for film mogul Sir Alexander Korda as the music director at London Films, supervising and commissioning the scores for such pictures as Anna Karenina (1948) and The Third Man (1949), among many others. Clifford returned to the BBC in the mid-'50s as the director of light music, though he continued to work in films as well until 1958. During his final decade, he was closely associated with light classical and mood music, a fact that resulted in the neglect of Clifford's serious music output, which was largely forgotten after his death in 1959. This situation was only rectified at the start of the twenty first century with interest on the part of the BBC and Chandos Records in rediscovering and recording the work of previously overlooked British composers. Read less
Browse 1-4 of 4 Available Recordings
  • 1.
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 5212 Release Date: 05/20/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frank Sterling,  Clive Richardson,  Len Stevens,  Cecil Milner  ... 
    Conductor:  Fernand Terby,  Jack Leon,  Sidney Torch,  Hans May  ... 
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  • 2.
    Golden Age Of Light Music - The Composer Conducts Vol 2
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 5178 Release Date: 09/13/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alfred Newman,  Don Gillis,  Robert Farnon,  Peter Yorke  ... 
    Performer:  Arthur Sandford,  Montague Ewing,  Albert William Ketèlbey,  Harriet Cohen
    Conductor:  Alfred Newman,  Don Gillis,  Robert Farnon,  Peter Yorke  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Neapolitan Novelty Band
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  • 3.
    The Golden Age of Light Music - Hall of Fame Vol 2
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 5124 Release Date: 12/26/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Williams,  Richard Rodgers,  Waldyr Azevedo,  Zez Confrey  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Williams,  Andre Kostelanetz,  Frank Cordell,  Percy Faith  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Charles Williams Concert Orchestra,  Andre Kostelanetz Orchestra,  Frank Cordell Orchestra  ... 
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  • 4.
    Golden Age Of Light Music - An Introduction
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 5101 Release Date: 06/29/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Farnon,  Sidney Torch,  Richard Rodgers,  Warren  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Farnon,  Queen's Hall Light Orchestra,  Sidney Torch,  Andre & His Orchestra Kostelanetz  ... 
    Conductor:  Robert Farnon,  Sidney Torch,  Andre Kostelanetz,  Ray Martin  ... 
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