Arthur Foote


Arthur Foote (5 March 1853 – 4 April 1937) was an American classical composer, and a member of the Boston Six. The other five were George Whitefield Chadwick, Amy Beach, Edward MacDowell, John Knowles Paine, and Horatio Parker. The modern tendency is to view Foote’s music as “Romantic” and “European” in light of the later generation of American composers such as Aaron Copland, Roy Harris and William Schuman, all of whom helped to develop a recognizably American sound in classical music. In some sense, then, he is to music what American poets were to literature before Walt Whitman. Foote was an early advocate of Brahms and Wagner and promoted performances of their music. Foote was an active music teacher and wrote a number of pedagogical works, including Modern Harmony in Its Theory and Practice (1905), written with Walter R. Spalding. It was republished as Harmony (1969). He also wrote Some Practical Things in Piano-Playing (1909) and Modulation and Related Harmonic Questions (1919). He contributed many articles to music journals, including Then and Now, Thirty Years of Musical Advance in America in Etude (1913) and A Bostonian Remembers in Musical Quarterly (1937). The Grove Music Encyclopedia says: “In his finest works Foote was a memorable composer. His style, firmly placed in the Romantic tradition, is characterized by lyrical melodies, expressive phrasing, and clear formal structure. He excelled in writing for strings and achieved particular popular...

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