Farwell, Arthur


Young American composer and lecturer, who has established a musical press for the advancement of American music, and who has done much with both voice and pen to raise the standard of musical taste in this country   Mr. Farwell has shown marked individuality in all that he has done, and has worked for many years to aid in the development of a national American music. He was born in St. Paul, Minn., and graduated in 1893 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he took a course in electrical engineering. His first teacher in music was Homer A. Norris of Boston, and he studied under Engelbert Humperdinck in Germany, in 1897. The next year he pursued his studies in violin and piano under Hans Pfitzner of Berlin, and in organ  with Alexandre Guilmant of Paris, in 1899. Mr. Farwell was lecturer on musical history at Cornell, from 1899 until 1901. He is at present musical director of the American Music Society at Boston and the president and organizer of the WaWan Society of America. He established at Newton Centre, Mass., in 1901 the Wa-Wan Press for the artistic publication of superior compositions by American composers. Mr. Farwell has done some ambitious and noteworthy work as a composer. He has written the American Indian melodies, Dawn, Navajo War Dance, and Pawnee Horses, all piano compositions based on Indian melodies. He also wrote Impressions of the Wa-Wan Ceremony and his other Indian music includes Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie (cowboy song) ; Hours of Grief; and The Black- Face; all Spanish-Calif ornian folk-songs; and two negro spirituals, De Rocks a-renderin' and Moanin* Dove. All of his folk-songs were recorded by the composer himself among the Indians. He has also written a ballade for piano and violin; a setting of Shelley's Indian Serenade and four folk-songs to words by Johanna Ambrosius, " the peasant genius of Germany." Other compositions by this composer not based on American folk-music are a symbolistic study for piano; the songs The Ruined Garden; Requiescat; Love's Secret; and a strikingly original song, Strew Poppy Buds. For orchestra he has written Dawn, a fantasy; the overture, Cornell; and a Love Song from an unfinished suite. Mr. Farwell has also lectured. Between 1901 and 1907 he made four tours across the country giving lecture-recitals on Music and Myth of the American Indians and A National American Music, and he has recorded Indian folk-songs in the Southwest for the American Institute of Archaeology.