Macbeth, Allan



Organist, composer and teacher; son of Norman Macbeth, the painter. Was born in Greenock, Scotland. His early years were passed in Edinburgh, whither his family had moved soon after his birth; but in 1870 he went to Germany where his musical impulses were aroused during the course of his general education. He returned to Edinburgh to study music under the best masters that city could offer, then went to Leipsic, where he studied in the Conservatory under Richter in theory, Wenzl in piano and Jadassohn in composition. He returned to Edinburgh in 1879, but after a year there went to Glasgow, where for seven years he conducted the Glasgow Choral Union. He has held various appointments as organist and conductor, and at Woodside Parish Church, Glasgow, he organized the first boychoir in Scotland. During nine years at St. George's-in-the-Fields Parish Church he developed the music to an unusual degree. His most important service to music has been, probably, in connection with the Glasgow Athenaeum School of Music of which he was principal from 1890 to 1902 and the Glasgow College of Music which he formed in 1902. In these schools he has given particular attention to the study of opera, and for the last fourteen years has presented annually an operatic masterpiece, usually of the French Comic Opera School. Although the greater part of Mr. Macbeth's time has been taken up by teaching, he has composed a number of pieces, among them Forgetme-not, an intermezzo for string orchestra; The Land of Glory, a cantata which won the prize of the Glasgow Society of Music in 1890; incidental music to the drama, Bruce, Lord of the Isles; In Memoriam, for orchestra; Silver Bells; Jubilee chorus; Intermezzo for strings; Serenata Danze; Pizzicate and Ballet for orchestra; string trios; piano trios; suite for violoncello and piano; piano-music and songs.