First Performances

Cyril Bradley Rootham (CBR) was director of music at St John's College, Cambridge from 1901 until his death in 1938. He was also a lecturer in composition at the University, and musical director of the CUMS. In his leisure time, he still managed to compose over 100 works: this page highlights the first performance or first broadcast of some major items.

Unfortunately CBR did not keep a diary or journal, so we have to track down first performance dates from CD booklet notes, old concert programmes, magazines, newspapers and the BBC Genome Project.


This web page is tentative and embryonic at this stage, and any extra information will be gladly received!

Please contact Dan Rootham initially through our Feedback page.

Opus Composed Title Genre Instrumentation Approx Duration Date of First Performance Performance Venue Performers Conductor Sheet Music
18 1903-05 Andromeda Choral Soprano, contralto and baritone soli, chorus and orchestra   1908 Bristol Musical Festival Bristol Festival Chorus Daniel Wilberforce Rootham? Typesetting
33 1908-09 The Lady of Shalott Choral Mezzo-soprano solo, chorus and orchestra 33' 1999-09-18 School Hall, Eton College Broadheath Singers, Windsor Sinfonia Robert Tucker Typeset:
available 2018
36 1910 A Passer By Orchestral Full orchestra   1911-10-03 Queen's Hall, London
(Prom 45)
The New Queen's Hall Orchestra Henry Wood Typesetting
51 1915 For the Fallen Choral Chorus and orchestra 20' 1919 Cambridge Cambridge University Music Society? Cyril Rootham Cathedral Music:
CM 1086
57 1918 The Two Sisters concert overture Orchestral Full orchestra 10' 1918-09-19 Queen's Hall, London
(Prom 35)
The New Queen's Hall Orchestra Cyril Rootham Typeset: proofreading
60 1920 Processional
("Procession in Scarlet")
Orchestral Full orchestra 06' 1920-06-15 King's College Chapel, Cambridge: musical celebration in honour of the Chancellor of Cambridge University (Arthur Balfour) Cambridge University Music Society? Cyril Rootham Typeset: proofreading
65 1921-22 Brown Earth Choral Chorus, semi-chorus and orchestra 08' 1923-03-14 Royal Albert Hall Combined musical societies of Oxford and Cambridge Universities Cyril Rootham? Typeset:
available 2018
72 1923 Jemima Part song Voices TTBB a cappella 02' 1923-03-14 First broadcast:
BBC All Stations relay from London
The London Male Voice Octet   Typesetting
81 1921-22 Ode on the Morning of Christ's Nativity Choral Soprano, tenor & baritone soli, chorus, boys' semi-chorus and orchestra 42' 1930-06-13 First performance: Cambridge Choir and orchestra of the Cambridge University Music Society Cyril Rootham Stainer & Bell:
1931-12-29 First broadcast:
BBC Regional London
The Wireless Chorus, chorus of boys, The BBC Studio Symphony Orchestra Cyril Rootham
83 1930 Septet Chamber music Viola, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn and harp 17' 1933-09-21 First performance:
Pittsfield Music Festival in Massachusetts, USA
Jules Lefranc (viola) with members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra   Typeset:
available 2018
1936-03-01 First UK performance:
Guildhall, Cambridge
Lionel Tertis (viola), Frank Butterworth (flute), Joy Boughton (oboe), Stephen Waters (clarinet), Anthony Baines (bassoon), David Burditt (horn), Vera Pryce Tidman(harp)
1936-06-07 First broadcast:
BBC National Programme Daventry
The London Wind Quintet (augmented): Robert Murchie (flute), Alec Whittaker (oboe), Frederick Thurston (clarinet), Frederick Wood (bassoon), Edmund Chapman (horn), Anthony Collins (viola), John Cockerill (harp)
86 1932 Symphony No 1 in C minor Orchestral Full orchestra 31' 1936-10-30 First broadcast:
BBC National Programme
The BBC Orchestra Cyril Rootham Still in m/s
97 1936-38 Symphony No 2 in D major Orchestral Full orchestra & women's chorus 38' 1939-03-17 First performance & broadcast:
BBC National Programme from the BBC's Maida Vale Studios
The BBC Orchestra, BBC Women's Chorus Sir Adrian Boult Typeset:
available 2018