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Classicsonline Home » Artists » » Farnon, Robert

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Robert Farnon (1917 - 2005)


Robert Farnon is widely recognised as one of the foremost composers, arrangers and conductors of light music during the second half of the twentieth century. His influence has spread far beyond the shores of the British Isles, and the fact that this kind of music continues to flourish is due in no small measure to the way in which his own success has encouraged many other musicians to work in this important sphere of our musical culture.

Robert Farnon was born in Toronto, Canada, on 24 July 1917, but has lived and worked in Britain since 1944, when he was sent overseas as conductor of the Canadian Band of the Allied Expeditionary Forces. This involved playing alongside Glenn Miller and George Melachrino, providing radio entertainment for the allies during the closing years of World War II. In Britain he discovered the existence of a world of music previously unfamiliar to him. The works of Eric Coates, Charles Williams, Albert W. Ketlbey and the other light music composers fascinated him, and he was surprised to realise that he had already been developing such ideas in isolation, during his early years in Canada.

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