American pianist, conductor, and composer Edward Collins (1886–1951) wraps up our Irish month here on Clef Notes. Though American, Collins had an Irish heritage that greatly influenced his music.
As a boy, Collins studied piano and composition in Chicago before traveling to Europe to receive further education from Max Bruch and Englebert Humperdink. After finishing his education, he spent a brief period conducting before WWI when he then traveled home to join the U.S. Army. While serving, he spent his free time arranging music to entertain the troops. Following the war, he became a teacher. Unfortunately, Edward Collins has not received the attention he deserved and has become relatively forgotten by many. Below, you can hear one of his Irish-inspired pieces, the Irish Rhapsody.
Stay tuned in April for as we celebrate 400 years of Shakespeare by looking at musical settings of his work!