Haydn Wood

Haydn Wood is best remembered for his substantial body of orchestral works in the light classical vein. He produced 15 suites, 9 rhapsodies, 8 overtures, and numerous other compositions in the orchestral genre, including concertos for piano and violin. Wood also wrote solo works for violin, piano, and organ. Though he did compose a symphony (ca. 1908), he seems to have abandoned it, having never seriously pursued publication. Wood also composed 180 songs, the most popular of which are probably Roses of Picardy (1916), written for his wife, soprano Dorothy Court, and A Brown Bird Singing (1922). He also produced several scores for musical plays or musicals, including Tina (1915), probably his greatest success in the genre. Wood, then, can clearly be seen as a sort of early example of a crossover artist, not unlike Leonard Bernstein. Wood arguably reached Bernstein's level of fame in England during his lifetime, both from his compositions and from numerous concert appearances and broadcasts. Today, Wood is regarded as a major figure in the realm of British light music, and recordings of his works are widely available.