This website is dedicated to the English composer Cyril Bradley Rootham (CBR).

The aim is to bring the works of CBR to the attention of musicians and choirs, and to get CBR's fine choral music into print and available to all.

News in 2019-20

Latest update | October 2019

  • 3 October 2019: Paul Carr is organist for this Thursday Live event at St Chad's Cathedral in Birmingham, opening his lunchtime recital with CBR's Fantasia Overture in D minor Op.14 - details on our Concerts page
  • 1 August 2019: London Music Press publishes CBR's Suite for Pianoforte Op.88 - written in 1933 and now available in print for the first time
  • 21 July 2019: a concert in Bracknell featured CBR's The Two Sisters Concert Overture Op.57, in the Wilde Theatre at South Hill Park Arts Centre - full details on our Concerts page
  • 20 July 2019: Maureen Redbond (cello) and Janet Roberts (piano) performed CBR's Op.73 "In the Lake Country" in Rayleigh, Essex - more details are on our Concerts page
  • 14-15 June 2019: not heard for 111 years... and then two evening performances of CBR's dramatic cantata Andromeda Op.18, at the Charles Kingsley 200 Festival in Eversley. More details on our Concerts page...

    Charles Kingsley 200 Festival flyer
    Charles Kingsley 200 Festival: "Andromeda"
    download the Andromeda flyer (PDF file 10 Mb)

  • 25 May 2019: at the English Music Festival in Dorchester-on-Thames, Rupert Marshall-Luck and Michael Korstick gave a powerful and convincing performance of CBR's Sonata for Violin and Piano in G minor Op.75 to open their morning concert
  • 28 March 2019: we have received a fascinating dissertation by Cameron Weatherford about CBR's For the Fallen Op.51 which you can download as a PDF file.
    DISCLAIMER   In the paper, Dan Rootham is named as the author of the Wikipedia article on Cyril Rootham. But in fact the original author is a Swedish-American musicologist, and Dan Rootham only made minor contributions to the Wikipedia entry some years later.
  • 3 March 2019: Paul Carr continued his series of Sunday Afternoon Organ Concerts at Holy Trinity Church, Wordsley DY8 5RU, in a programme which included two works by Cyril Rootham - Fantasia Overture in D minor Op.14 and Rhapsody on an Old English Tune Op.74
    Paul Carr and Dan Rootham in Holy Trinity Church, Wordsley
    Paul Carr and Dan Rootham in Holy Trinity Church, Wordsley
    Photo: Anne Davies

  • 2 March 2019: after intense rehearsals the previous day, Quintin Beer conducted a private performance of CBR's dramatic cantata Andromeda Op.18 - the first since its premiere in 1908. This event was in preparation for the full performances on 14-15 June 2019 (see above) and was co-funded by the Rootham family and the Charles Kingsley 200 Festival.
    You can hear the complete recording (with score pages in sync) on the Andromeda playlist page.
    The performance used the vocal score, with Raya Kostova at the piano. The recording engineer was James Waterhouse, in the beautiful environment of St Cuthbert's Church, Earls Court:

    Quintin Beer conducts recording of Op.18 Andromeda in St Cuthbert's Church, Earls Court
    Quintin Beer (conductor), Raya Kostova (piano) and choir in St Cuthbert's Church, Earls Court

  • 16 January 2019: Emma Sheppard (viola) and Julian Jacobson (piano) gave a lunchtime recital in Doncaster at the Priory Place Methodist Church - their fascinating concert included CBR's In the Lake Country Op.73, and full details are on our Concerts page
2018   (show/hide)
2017   (show/hide)
2016   (show/hide)
2015   (show/hide)
2014   (show/hide)
2013   (show/hide)


Short biography

Cyril Bradley Rootham (CBR) was a composer, conductor, teacher and college organist. For most of his working life he was based at St John's College, Cambridge - a place which he loved. So far five generations of the Rootham family had connections with or have graduated from St John's College.

Although a prolific composer in his own right, CBR also directed his efforts towards the revival of neglected works by established composers (Purcell, Mozart and Handel) and in the promotion of new music from contemporary composers (Vaughan Williams, Kodály, Honegger and Pizzetti ). As conductor of the Cambridge University Musical Society (CUMS), CBR had at his disposal a large orchestra for such musical ventures. The article about CBR on Wikipedia provides more details about his career.

From 1900 until his early death in 1938, CBR was an influential figure in Cambridge musical life. He became Senior Lecturer in Counterpoint and Harmony, and taught a number of musicians who went on to become significant composers (including Arthur Bliss, Armstrong Gibbs and Patrick Hadley).

Previously at the Proms...

What's next?

Future plans: during 2020 this website will continue to augment the list of CBR's works, telling you about upcoming editions of CBR's music, announcing live concerts, and adding more synchronised score pages to the playlist on the Works page.

Note: if you have any information you would like to contribute to the website, or if you are planning a performance of one of CBR's works, please do get in touch through our Feedback page.

• do share a page link to the CBR website
• do visit our playlist Cyril Rootham's music on YouTube