Alex James's Date Night - Saturday 15 August 2015, 7pm

Alex James takes a look at all of the major musical anniversaries of the week ahead.

Name the composer

Tonight, Alex explores the life of English composer of Creole descent, Samuel Coleridge Taylor, born on this day in 1875. He achieved such success that he was once called the "African Mahler".

Coleridge-Taylor's greatest success was undoubtedly his hugely popular cantata Hiawatha's Wedding Feast, which was widely performed by choral groups in England during his lifetime and in the decades after his death. He also composed chamber music, anthems, and the African Dances for violin, among other works. 

Alex also discovers the musical gift Haydn left on his final visit to England, and will mark the first time the New York Philharmonic Orchestra played a concert of music written entirely by a living composer. 

There are birthdays to celebrate too – of English violinist Daniel Hope, Norwegian trumpeter Tine Thing Helseth and French film composer Alexandre Desplat.

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