Elizabeth Poston

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Born: 24 October 1905

Died: 18 March 1987


Elizabeth Poston was an English composer, pianist, and writer. She studied at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM) in London, where she was encouraged by both Peter Warlock and Ralph Vaughan Williams. She won a prize from RAM for her violin sonata, which was subsequently broadcast by the BBC. When she graduated from RAM in 1925 seven of her songs were published, and in 1928 she published five more. Poston went abroad between 1930 and 1939, where she studied architecture, and collected folksongs. When she returned to England at the beginning of WWII she joined the BBC, and became the director of music in the European Service. She left briefly in 1945, but returned in 1947 in order to advise the creation of the BBC Third Programme. Poston was the president of the Society of Women Musicians 1955–1961.

Poston composed scores for radio and television productions, over 40 in radio alone, and collaborated with writers such as C. S. Lewis and Dylan Thomas. She wrote the score for the television production of Howards End while living in Rooks Nest House, the setting of the novel.

In addition to her composing, Poston was also an academic, who wrote articles and program notes for the Arts Council of Great Britain and was the editor of a number of folksong carol and hymn collections, and in 1947 she created a five-part lecture series on Peter Warlock for the BBC. In addition she was a respected performer, premiering Walter Leigh’s Concertino for piano and strings and playing piano at National Gallery Concerts.

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List of choral works

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  • Antiphon and Psalm: Laudate Dominum
  • Category: chorus and organ
  • Ardan Mor - solo voice and piano
  • Aubade - solo voice and piano
  • Balulalow - solo voice and piano
  • Be still, my sweet sweeting - solo voice and piano
  • The Bellman's Song - solo voice and piano
  • Brown is my love - solo voice and piano
  • Call for the robin red-breast - solo voice and piano
  • The Carol of the Crown - chorus and organ
  • Dance to your Daddie - solo voice and piano
  • Dance To Your Daddie - SA
  • The Female Highwayman - solo voice and piano
  • Five Songs (1928) - voice and piano
  • In Praise of Women - solo voice and piano
  • In youth is pleasure - solo voice and piano
  • The Lake Isle of Innisfree (1928) - solo voice and piano
  • A Little candle to St. Anthony - solo voice and piano
  • Maid Quiet - solo voice and piano
  • Peter Halfpenny's Tune - solo voice and piano
  • She is all so slight - solo voice and piano
  • Song of Wisdom - chorus and organ
  • Songs of the Women of Britain - (1956) chorus and piano
  • Sweet Suffolk Owl - voice and piano
  • Sweet Suffolk Owl (1925) - Solo voice, Piano

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External links

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