Florio, Caryl

Pen-name of William James Rob John

An Englishman, who has resided in America a number of years and who has been successful as actor, critic, player and accompanist, and who was almost wholly self-taught. He was born in Tavistock, Devon, and went to New York in 1857, and from 1858 to 1860 was the first boy soprano singer at Trinity Church in that city. Since then he has appeared on the stage and has acted as organist and choirmaster in various churches in New York, Baltimore and Asheville, N. C, and has conducted operatic performances at the Academy of Music, New York, and at Havana. Florio was musical director at Wells College, at the Baptist Female Institute at Indianapolis, and conducted the old vocal society, Amicitia Orchestra and Palestrina choir of New York, and from 1899 was director of the Choral Society at Asheville, N. C., and choirmaster of All Souls' Church at Biltmore, N. C. His works have nearly all appeared under his pen-name, Caryl Florio, and consist of three operettas, entitled Inferno; Les tours de Mercure; and Suzanne; two operas, Gulda, and Uncle Tom; cantatas, symphonies; overtures; piano concertos; four sonatas; madrigals; part-songs and songs; church services and anthems; Fairy Pictures, four piano duets.