Tag Archives: Musical

Jan Berenska (1905-1968)

Musician & orchestra leader It is rather sad to think that a man whose accomplishments were such that a Leamington street was named after him is almost forgotten within a few years. Berenska Drive was named after Jan Berenska a multi-talented musician whose orchestra had a huge following in the heyday of radio. During the […]

Denis Matthews (1919 – 1988)

Concert pianist & writer When Denis Matthews left Warwick School in 1935 to take up a scholarship  at the Royal Academy of Music in London, one of his erstwhile masters said “They tell me that you are going in for music Matthews but what do you intend doing with the rest of your time?” The […]

Robert Simpson, Composer and Writer, 1921 – 1997

Robert Wilfrid Levick Simpson, internationally renowned as one of the most prolific 20th century composers of symphonies and chamber music, was born at 21 Rosefield Street Leamington in March 1921, where his parents, as officers of the Leamington Spa Corps of the Salvation Army in Park Street had an Army house. Mrs Simpson was Dutch, […]

Leamington Spa Brass Bands: A Brief History

From its earliest days as a Spa town, Leamington has always hosted bands and their music. There used to be military bands playing in the Pump Room Gardens every morning in the summer season, – an unwelcome distraction in the early years of the 20th century, for the girls at the Grammar School, sitting examinations […]

William Charles Denis Browne

Composer, Conductor, Pianist, Organist and Music Critic (aka The Man Who Buried Rupert Brooke) Born in Leamington in 1888 to distinguished Anglo-Irish parents, William was educated first at Greyfriars Preparatory School in Leamington, and although he won a mathematics scholarship to Harrow, he chose instead to take up a classics scholarship at Rugby School, where […]

Ethel Harraden

Ethel Rosalie Harraden (Mrs Frank Glover) – 1857-1917. Ethel Rosalie Harraden was born in Islington, the older daughter of Samuel Harraden, a London and Calcutta Agent, and also a musician. She was reputed to have begun composing at the age of five, and later studied at the Royal Academy under Sir Sterndale Bonnett and Dr Dorell. […]