Personalities | James Hook | Classical Era | Classical
English composer and organist
Born in Norwich, Hook was musically precocious, performing in public when he was six and composing an opera at eight. At 17 he settled in London as an organist, and soon obtained posts as organist and composer at Marylebone Pleasure Gardens and then (in 1774) at Vauxhall, retiring in 1820. A fluent composer, he wrote numerous light and tuneful sonatas and songs, concertos (he played one every night in the season at Vauxhall) and comic operas, as well as didactic works for his teaching (Guida di Musica). Influenced by J. C. Bach and later by Haydn, he was the leading native British composer in the galant style.
English 18th-Century Keyboard Concertos, Paul Nicholson, Parley of Instruments (dir) Peter Holman (Hyperion)
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