Concert: The Life and Music of Frederick Kelly

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On Saturday, 12 November in All Saints’ Parish Church, Marlow, the Chiltern Camerata will be performing a special concert commemorating the life and music of the composer Frederick Kelly (1881-1916) on the exact centenary of his death in action in the First World War.

This remarkable Australian-born polymath lived at Bisham Grange near Marlow and not only won a rowing gold medal in the 1908 London Olympics, but was a concert pianist and composer, a socialite and a fascinating diarist.

Kelly saw service at Gallipoli where he was present in the last moments of the life of the poet Rupert Brook, to whom he dedicated his atmospheric ‘Elegy’.  The concert will feature songs and instrumental and orchestral compositions by Kelly and his associates and contemporaries.

The performance, directed by Sam Laughton and brought to life by narrator Andrew Green, will offer intriguing insights into Kelly and his prodigiously talented life, which was snuffed out all too soon at the Battle of the Somme on 12 November 1916.

It will re-visit the links between Kelly’s life as a musician, his sporting prowess, his local connections and his position in contemporary society in the years leading to the outbreak of war.  Other new insights are promised.


Frederick Kelly
– Elegy ‘In Memoriam Rupert Brooke’
– Serenade for flute, horn, harp & strings
– Two songs Op. 1
–  Waltz Pageant Nos. 1,4,7 – piano duet
– Music, ‘when soft voices die’
Grainger – My Robin is to the Greenwood Gone
Ravel – Introduction and Allegro for flute, harp and strings

 TICKETS (unreserved) £10.  Under 18s: free.

Tickets from any of the following (there is no booking fee):
Tourist Information Offices in:
High Wycombe (Main Library);
Marlow (Institute Road);
Princes Risborough.

Music Shops:
The Record Shop, 37 Hill Avenue, Amersham
Perfect Pitch, 72, The Broadway, Chesham;
Rosehill Instruments, 64 London End, Beaconsfield;
Strings of Penn, Elm Road, Penn.

From the Hon. Secretary, Dick Morbey:
01494 883112 or

And on the door on the evening of the performance subject to availability.



Article author: Paul Merchant

About the author: Founded in its original version back in 2000 - yes the internet DID exist back then. Brought up in Marlow, went to school here, now has children at the same schools. Quite clearly loves all things Marlow - hence spending over 2 decades doing this!

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