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A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–B

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this :

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–B", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 25 June 2017

- B -

BACKHAUS, Henry (George Henry; BACKHOUSE)

Priest, singer, choral director

Born Paderborn, Germany 15 February 1811
Arrived Adelaide, 6 November 1846 (per Mazeppa from Batavia), Sydney, 5 December 1846 (per Dorset)
Died Bendigo, VIC, 7 September 1882 (NLA persistent identifier) (NLA persistent identifier)


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (7 November 1846), 3

"MISCELLANEOUS", South Australian Register (11 November 1846), 3

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. ARRIVALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 December 1846), 2

"THE LATE POPE", Sydney Chronicle (19 December 1846), 2

The music was exquisite, being exclusively in the solemn and majestic Gregorian tone; the choir was conducted by the Rev. Dr. Backhouse, who excels in his knowledge, and practice of sacred music.

"THE LATE MR. O'CONNELL", Sydney Chronicle (30 September 1847), 2

On Tuesday last a Solemn Dirge and High Mass was celebrated at the Metropolitan Church of St. Mary, for the repose of the soul of this great and good man ... The Rev. Dr. Backhouse presided in the Choir, where he was assisted by the Messrs. Howson, and the organ being wholly silent, as is usual on such occasions, the hearers had a full opportunity of Appreciating the power and melody of the choristers, as they poured forth the solemn and majestic notes of the Gregorian Chaunt.

"THE CHURCH", Sydney Chronicle (16 October 1847), 2

"DEATH OF DEAN BACKHAUS", The Argus (8 September 1882), 5

"THE LATE VERY REVEREND DEAN BACKHAUS", Bendigo Advertiser (12 October 1882), 2

... He was wise and prudent and frugal, almost to a fault. He was simple in his habits, but refined in his tastes, deeply devoted to music, with a rich and well cultivated voice.

Bibliography and resources:

A. E. Owens, Backhaus, George Henry (1811-1882), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

BAILEY, Amelia (Mrs. R. S. SMYTHE)

Soprano vocalist

Born London, 5 November 1842
Active Melbourne, VIC, 1860s
Died Deepdene, VIC, 29 July 1932, aged 89


A pupil of Charles Elsasser, Bailey made her debut in Melbourne in 186. In 1862 she toured as an associate artist with Poussard and Douay, and later that year with the elocutionist Miss Atkins and pianist Marquis Chisholm. With them in Launceston in January 1863 she was billed singing Riflemen Form, perhaps the setting by local composer John Adams. Bailey and Chisholm sailed for China in May 1863 with their agent Robert Smythe (whom she married during 1863). By late 1864 she was in Ceylon and Bombay giving concerts with Poussard. Still in India, early in 1866 the Lahore Chronicle had spoken "very favourably of Miss Bailey's talents, and asserts that no vocalist equal to that lady has visited India since poor Catherine Hayes sang in Calcutta some seven or eight years ago". She finally reappeared in Sydney, from Mauritius, in October 1869, giving concerts with comic vocalist Florence Calzoda accompanied by harpist Edwin Cobley. She was performing in Adelaide in 1876.


[News], The Argus (23 May 1860), 5

Mrs. Hancock and Miss Bailey were the lady vocalists, and gave several airs, much to the satisfaction of the audience. Miss Bailey is a young lady, who, it will be remembered, lately made a promising debut at the Philharmonic Society's concert. She sang very well last evening, but it was unnecessary and injudicious on the part of a section of the audience to compel her to accept two encores.

[News], The Argus (4 July 1860), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 April 1861), 8

[News], The South Australian Advertiser (21 May 1862), 2

Poussard and Douay are accompanied by a very talented soprano vocalist, Miss Amelia Bailey, who has been performing for some lime past with great success at the various concert-rooms in Victoria.

"MONDAY EVENING'S CONCERT", South Australian Register (27 May 1862), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (1 January 1863), 5

"WEEKLY REGISTER", Empire (30 May 1863), 3

[News], The Argus (12 November 1864), 5

"MUSICAL", South Australian Register (25 May 1865), 2

"DRAMATIC AND MUSICAL", South Australian Register (3 April 1866), 2

"MUSICAL AND THEATRICAL", South Australian Register (9 July 1867), 2

"ARTISTES AND THEIR WANDERINGS", The Mercury (13 September 1869), 3

[Advertisement], Empire (30 October 1869), 3

[Advertisement], Empire (1 November 1869), 8

"SCHOOL OF ARTS", Empire (9 November 1869), 2

"FIRST ST. CLAIR CONCERT", The South Australian Advertiser (10 January 1876), 7

[News], The Argus (8 January 1855), 5

"A Musical Pioneer. By S.H.J.", The Argus (2 July 1932), 6

"OBITUARY", The Argus (1 August 1932), 6

The musical history of early Melbourne is recalled by the death on Friday evening at her residence in Deepdene-road, Deepdene of Mrs R. S. Smythe, formerly Miss Amelia Bailey. Mrs Smythe would have reached the age of 90 on November 5 of this year. She was a native of London and arrived in Melbourne with her parents at a very early age. She was attending St James's Sunday school when her singing attracted the notice of Mr. Allan, the founder of the music firm of Allan and Sons. He obtained her admittance to the Philharmonic Society at the age of 13 years and before she was 16 she had been appointed principal soprano. That was in 1858. She was the leading soprano of Victoria for a number of years until she lost her voice owing to a throat affection. One of her early performances was in "The Messiah" in Geelong. Mr. H. Byron Moore was conductor. He used to tell that if the ages of the five principals had been added the total would not have been 100 years. They included Miss Bailey, Mr. Armes Beaumont the noted Melbourne tenor, and himself. Miss Bailey was married in 1863 to Mr. R. S. Smythe, who conducted concert tours and presented celebrities for many years. Under his management, with the celebrated Miss Arabella Goddard, the English pianist, as "star" she toured the East and South Africa. Mr. Smythe died in 1917. Mrs Smythe has three children, two of whom survive her. Mrs Edgar Bell and Miss Adelaide Smythe. Her son Mr. Carlyle Smythe died while on a Continental tour with his wife six or seven years ago. He had earned a high reputation in Melbourne journalism, particularly in musical criticism and his early death was much regretted.

BAILEY, William

Professor of music and dancing

Active Sydney, by 1860
Died Surry Hills, NSW, 19 February 1873, aged 48 


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 January 1860), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 October 1860), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1862), 1

"FUNERAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 July 1866), 8

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 February 1873), 1


Bellman, bellringer

Active Launceston, 1836


"LAUNCESTON: POLICE INTELLIGENCE", The Cornwall Chronicle (2 January 1836), 2

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (17 March 1838), 43

BAKER, William Kellett (W. BAKER)

Music engraver, lithographer, printer, publisher

Born ? Dublin, Ireland, ? c1806 / c.1808
Arrived Sydney, NSW, early 1835 (assisted immigrant)
Active musically, 1840s (Hibernian Press)
Died Maitland, NSW, 16 January 1857, aged 49 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)



"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 January 1857), 1

Musical prints:

A book of psalm tunes for Presbyterian congregations ("neatly executed and arranged for three voices") (Sydney: 1844) NO COPY IDENTIFIED

"SACRED MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 February 1844), 2 

NATHAN: Sweet smiles and bright eyes (Sydney: W. Baker, Hibernian Press, 1845)

NATHAN: Oh, for the olden time (Sydney: W. Baker, Hibernian Press, 1845)

[ANONYMOUS]: The grand fancy ball ([Sydney: William Baker, 1845]) NO COPY IDENTIFIED

NATHAN: Leichhardt's grave; an elegiac ode (Sydney: William Baker, Hibernian Press, 1845)

NATHAN: Sir Wilfred (Sydney: William Baker, [1845])

NATHAN: The Lord's prayer (Sydney: William Baker, Hibernian Press, 1845)

HINCKESMANN: A dream of the Mayor's fancy dress ball, in Heads of the people (10 July 1847) (Sydney: William Baker), plate facing page 106

WALLACE (arr.): Walze favorite du duc de Reichstadt (Sydney: W. Baker, [184-?]) (compare earlier print by Fernyhough)

Bibliography and resources:

Richard Neville (et al.), "William Kellett Baker", DAAO (orig. 1992)

Neidorf 1999, 135-36

BALDWIN, Samri Samuel

The celebrated thought reader, songwriter, composer

Born 1848
Active Australia, by May 1878


[News], Kyabram Union (18 November 1887), 2

We have received from S. Baldwin, a copy of a national song for Australia, Australia by the Sea, the words and music by that talented gentleman, are written with a desire for colonial confederation.

[News], North Melbourne Advertiser (19 November 1887), 2

[News], The Telegraph (26 November 1887), 6

Musical works:

Australia by the sea, words and music by Professor S. S. Baldwin, the celebrated thought reader ([Melbourne: Fergusson & Mitchell., lith., n.d. [1887])



Active Sydney, 1835


In May 1835, Ball was listed as bassoon player for the ensuing Sydney Theatre Royal season.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (4 May 1835), 3

Theatre Royal, SYDNEY ... The Lessees have succeeded in engaging all the first-rate Musical Talent in Sydney to form their Orchestra, which consists of the following gentlemen - Leader of the Band, Mr. Clarke; Violins, Messrs. Spyers, Johnson, Dyer, and Scott; principal Flute, Mr. Stubbs; Violincello and Grand Piano Forte, Mr. Cavendish; Clarionets, Messrs. Turner and Sharp; Bassoons, Messrs. Hoare and Ball; Bugle, Mr. Pappin; Drums, Mr. Vaughan ... The Musical Department will be considerably improved, and under the direction of Mr. Cavendish.

BALY, Edward

Flute player, music teacher, schoolmaster, poet, librettist

Born ? UK, 1819
Arrived Sydney, early 1840s
Died Sydney, 28 April 1897, in his 79th year


Formerly tutored by Robert Lowe at Oxford, and a student of the flautist Richardson, Edward Baly arrived in Sydney to teach at Sydney Grammar School on Lowe's recommendation. After having also been second master at St. James's Grammar School, Baly opened his own Academy for boys in 1845, which he continued to run until 1850 when he was declared insolvent. It was then he turned to concert performance. Having postponed his own planned first concert, he appeared for Stephen and Henry Marsh in May 1850, playing a flute solo by Nicholson. He then presented the recently arrived Sara Flower (along with John Deane, George Worgan, and William Stanley) in concert in June, and in turn appeared in her concert. In July he advertised the reopening of his school, at which time he also offered "instruction on the Flute" to gentlemen, describing himself as "a pupil of the Celebrated RICHARDSON". In 1853, he played several times with Winterbottom's Band. He was founding secretary of the Parramatta Harmonic Society in 1861-62.


"NEW INSOLVENT", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 January 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (11 May 1850), 1

"CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 May 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 June 1850), 1

"MR. BALY'S CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 June 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 July 1850), 1

"MR. MOORE'S MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT", Empire (25 March 1852), 2

[Advertisement], Empire (20 May 1853), 1

"PARRAMATTA ... HARMONIC SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 November 1861), 6

[Advertisement], Empire (5 June 1862), 1

"Camilla Urso", Evening News (28 January 1880), 3

"A Jubilee Cantata", The Kiama Independent, and Shoalhaven Advertiser (5 July 1887), 4

A Jubilee Cantata. The following lines (says Wednesday's Echo) were written by Mr E. Baly at the request of the well-known musician, Mr. William Stanley, who wished to set them to music. This his "Jubilee Cantata" will be sung by the St. Barnabas's Musical Society on Monday evening with orchestral accompaniments:

What means that loud and hearty cheer
Which breaks upon the listening ear?
Why throng the busy streets to-day
The brave, the bold, the fair, the gay?
Each plays a part in this grand scene,
To render homage to their Queen ...

"DIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 April 1897), 1

"NEWS", Queanbeyan Age (8 May 1897), 2

Bibliography and resources:


Flautist, musician, carpenter, farmer

Arrived Adelaide, SA, 10 October 1849 (per Cheapside, from London)


"ARRIVED", South Australian Register (13 October 1849), 3

"CONCERT AT THE BURRA HOTEL", South Australian Gazette and Mining Journal (19 April 1851), 3 

"KOORINGA CONCERTS", South Australian Register (30 April 1851), 3

Mr. George Bennett's concert on Friday the 25th instant, at the Burra Hotel, Kooringa, was well attended ... Mr. Bambrick's execution on the flute obtained immense applause, which he well merited ... Mr. Bambrick's second concert took place on Saturday, the 26th instant ...

"KOORINGA", South Australian (2 May 1851), 3

BANBURY, Florrie (Florence Maud)


Active Brisbane, QLD, 1890s
Died Nundah, QLD, 21 March 1933 


"ALL HALLOWS CONVENT. PRIZE DISTRIBUTION", The Brisbane Courier (29 April 1891), 5

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1897), 4

"WOMAN'S COLUMN", Freeman's Journal (16 January 1897), 10

"GOSSIP FROM WOMAN'S CLUBLAND", Queensland Figaro (12 January 1905), 6

"DEATHS", The Brisbane Courier (30 March 1933), 10 

Musical works:

The Ariel waltz (dedicated to Mr. W. H. Wilson, president of the Brisbane Liedertafel) (Brisbane: W. H. Paling, [1897])

BANCROFT, R. (? Richard)

Basso vocalist

Born Wakefield, Yorkshire, England, 1819
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 5 December 1848 (per Hooghly, from London and Portsmouth)
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, December 1851 (per Tory, from Adelaide)
Died Fitzroy, Melbourne, VIC, 18 October 1856, aged 36


Bancroft was a soloist for Adelaide Choral Society concerts in 1849. He appeared in several other concerts in Adelaide in 1850, giving the likely first performance of Andrew Moore's Falling leaves in September. He gave a farewell benefit in October 1851 and in December he and his wife (Elizabeth Ann Johnson, married Adelaide 19 December 1849) sailed for Melbourne. During 1852 he appeared regularly in Melbourne concerts, his fellow artists including two other recent arrivals from Adelaide, Francesca Allen and violinist W. F. Osborne. He was a soloist for the Philharmonic Society in August 1854, and played Ascanio for Anna Bishop and Lewis Lavenu in their Melbourne Lucrezia Borgia in July 1856. Since he disappears from the musical record thereafter, he may well have been the Richard Bancroft, formerly of Wakefield, Yorkshire, who died in Fitzroy in October 1856.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (6 December 1848), 3

"CHORAL SOCIETY'S CONCERT", South Australian (21 September 1849), 3

"CONCERT OF THE CHORAL SOCIETY", South Australian (11 December 1849), 1s

"LOCAL INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (23 May 1850), 3

[News], South Australian Register (19 September 1850), 3

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (14 October 1851), 1

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (11 December 1851), 2

"THE CONCERT", The Argus (13 March 1852), 5

"THURSDAY'S CONCERT", The Argus (7 April 1852), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (21 April 1852), 2

"THURSDAY'S CONCERT", The Argus (29 April 1852), 5

"THE SATURDAY CONCERT", The Argus (1 May 1852), 5

"THE CONCERT", The Argus (6 May 1852), 5

"PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (29 August 1855), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 July 1856), 8

"DIED", The Argus (21 October 1856), 4

Bibliography and resources:

BANKS, Thomas (senior)

Professor of music, buffo singer, pianist, composer, music retailer

Born [UK] 1820/21
Arrived Sydney, by April 1855
Died Balmain, NSW, 19 March 1890, aged 69 years

Arrived: Banks was first listed in professional concert programs in Sydney in April 1855.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (13 April 1855), 1

He was still being reported as a "new vocalist" in November.

"ROYAL POLYTECHNIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 November 1855), 8

He continued to appear in public with artists of high calibre, including Sara Flower, Frank and John Howson, John Gregg, and the young Alfred Anderson as late as 1863.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 January 1863), 1

By early 1859, he was also a piano retailer and tuner with a warehouse in Lower William Street, near the Australian Museum.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 February 1859), 4

He later relocated his Pianoforte Warerooms to 201 Castlereagh Street. In 1859 he was billed in a concert program as "Musical Director of St. Mary's Cathedral".

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 September 1859), 1

According to Errol Lea-Scarlett, Banks hailed from Preston, Lancashire.

Died: "Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 March 1890), 1

"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 March 1890), 12

Musical Works:

Les graces (The graces) three polkas brilliantes ("composed and dedicated to his esteemed friend, E. B. Gowland, Esq., by T. BANKS") (Sydney: T. Banks, [1861])

BANKS, Thomas Philip (junior)


Born London, 1848/49 (son of Thomas BANKS (senior))
Arrived Sydney, NSW, with family by April 1855
Died Sydney, NSW, 13 May 1888, aged 39


"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 May 1888), 14

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 May 1888), 7

... Mr. Banks was born in London, and so early gave promise of musical talent that at four years of age he received regular lessons from his mother. Before he was seven he became a pupil of Anthony Lejeune, the organist of Moorfields Chapel. Two years later he left England for Sydney with his parents, and upon his arrival became a pupil of Mr. Charles S. Packer. Thence he passed on to Mr. Cordner, and finally to the tuition of Mr. Charles Edward Horsley. The first appointment held as organist by Mr. Banks was at the Convent of the Sacred Heart; afterwards he was organist at St. Patrick's Cathedral, and since 1877 he filled the same post at St. Mary's Cathedral ... Mr. Banks was greatly respected and esteemed by a large circle of friends and musicians; he was very unassuming, and devoted in an unostentatious manner to his profession. He was 39 years of age.

"In Memoriam", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 May 1888), 1


Harpist, harp player

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1888-89

BARKER, Walter Thomas

Harpist, harp player

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by January 1890
Died Melbourne, VIC, 27 September 1933, aged 69


"EVENING POPULAR CONCERT", The Argus (10 September 1888), 9

The two novelties at this concert were solos for harp and bassoon. ln the first - solo, harp, "Autumn," J. Thomas - Mr. F. C. Barker (who is still in his teens) proved himself to be possessed of the brilliance, the steadiness, and the accuracy of a fully-matured artist. The performance was so good that after twice coming forward to bow his acknowledgements, Mr. Barker had to submit to an encore with another Welsh melody. As a distinguished harpist, Mr. Barker, has undoubtedly a great future before him.

"DEPARTURE OF MR. COWEN", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 February 1889), 11

"DRAMATIC AND MUSICAL NOTES", Launceston Examiner (4 January 1890), 2s

The newly engaged well known English harpist for the Victorian Orchestra, Mr. Walter T. Barker, has arrived in Melbourne by the s.s. Orient. Mr. Barker, who studied at the Royal Academy of Music, London, of which institution he is an associate, has appeared with the greatest success at all principal London concerts, the press being unanimous as to his ability and proficiency as a harpist. Mr. Barker is a brother of the popular artist, Mr. Fred. C. Barker, who played with the greatest success at the Melbourne Exhibition concerts under Mr. Cowen.

"ALLEN'S POPULAR CONCERTS", Bendigo Advertiser (9 August 1890), 4

Mr. Walter S. Barker, A.R.A.M., who is without doubt one of the finest harp players that has ever visited Australia, will delight the audience with some beautiful Welsh airs.

"TOWN NEWS", The Australasian (12 March 1892), 23

Walter Thomas Barker, the well-known harp player, yesterday, in the County Court, sued Mr. Colin M. Longmuir, as vice-president of the Victorian Orchestra, for £50, the amount of a bonus alleged to be due to the plaintiff by the committee of management of the orchestra. The case for the plaintiff was that he was engaged in November, 1890, to perform for the orchestra as harpist at a salary of £6 per week, and that he was to have a bonus of £50 if the orchestra was disbanded in July, 1890. It was disbanded in that month, but the committee declined to pay him the bonus, and he therefore sued for it. The defence was that the £50 was only to be paid for the plaintiffs, passage money in case he went to England about the time the orchestra was disbanded. The action was heard by Judge Walsh, who decided that the plaintiff had no case, and nonsuited him, with £8 8s. costs. Mr. Cook appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. McArthur for the defendant.

"MUSIC. CONCERTS, &c.", The Australasian (6 October 1917), 24

"Death Of Mr. Walter T. Barker, Noted Harpist", The Advertiser (29 September 1933), 7

Death Of Mr. Walter T. Barker, Noted Harpist. MELBOURNE, September 28. Mr. Walter T. Barker, the harpist, died yesterday at the age of 69 years. He studied the organ, violin, and piano at the Royal Academy of Music London, where he obtained the degree of associate. An accident, in which he strained the sinews of his thumb made it impossible for him to continue to play any instrument requiring constant use of the thumb, and he became a harpist, with such success that he won honors at the Royal Academy, and several times played by command before members of the Royal Family. Mr. Barker toured Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. Some years ago he retired because he was afflicted with blindness, and he was presented with a monetary gift by many friends and admirers.

"MR. W. T. BARKER", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 September 1933), 16

"PERSONAL", The Advertiser (5 October 1933), 46  


Melbourne Centennial Exhibition Orchestra; Victorian Orchestra

BARKER, George William

Amateur musician, vocalist, flute player, Methodist

Born London, England, 5 July 1826
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1837
Active Parramatta, NSW
Died Stanmore, NSW, 22 June 1897


"THE LATE MR. G. W. BARKER", The Methodist (3 July 1897), 8 

Gilbert H. Smith, "MEMORIES OF OLD TIMES", The Methodist (17 July 1897), 1 

Mr. E. G. Barker has written me to ask if I would send you a short account of the early days of his late father, Mr. George Barker. Well, sir, when I begin to look back at our youthful days of over 50 years ago (for it is period since I first knew Mr. Barker) I find how little remains impressed on my memory of our everyday life at that distant, period. But during the long space of time we have been acquainted, we have always been connected with the Wesleyan church. When a young man, one of my friend George's hobbies was music. He had a fine voice, and could also play the flute. At that time we had no grand organ in Parramatta, but a few of the members used to meet two or three times a week and practice for the Sabbath services with a couple of clarionettes and a flute or two to help. We had far better congregational singing than we have had of late years ... As the shop was situated opposite my house, we used to see each other frequently. I used to hear George's flute at work very often in the day, which gave me the idea that the business was not a very flourishing one ...

BARLOW, Edward David

Music lithographer, printmaker, visual artist

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 30 August 1836 (per Lord Goderich)

BARLOW, Maria Sarah Lyons

Teacher of Music and Pianoforte

Active Newtown, Sydney, NSW, 1844-45


Recently arrived, Barlow, "from Brighton, England", took over part of George Gordonovitch's shop in George-street as base for his business "House Painting, Writing, Graining and Gilding in all its varieties". In February 1845 he was engaged in litigation with his estranged wife, the music teacher Maria Lyons Barlow, for maintenance and the recovery of her piano. He then relocated, temporarily. to Maitland where in December among his services he offered "Lithography done accurately and with speed. Music Copied, 6d. per page" and "Profiles, 2s. 6d. each (Illuminated, and warranted Likenesses). Music copied. Lithography executed at an hour's notice".


" [Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (3 October 1836), 3

"CLAIM FOR MAINTENANCE BY A WIFE", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 February 1845), 3

"CLAIM FOR MAINTENANCE BY A WIFE. To the Editors", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 February 1845), 3

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (6 December 1845), 3

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (13 December 1845), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Edward David Barlow, DAAO



Active ? Melbourne, 1855; Beechworth, VIC, 1857-58

But see also Robert Barlow below


? [Advertisement], The Argus (16 April 1855), 8

[Astley's Circus, Melbourne] ... Leader of the Band. Mr. J. Barlow.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (16 March 1857), 3

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (3 August 1857), 1

"WOOLSHED", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (21 October 1857), 2

"POLICE COURT", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (6 January 1858), 3

John Barlow claimed £1 for services as a musician from John Brock landlord of the Hibernian hotel. The agreement was that complainant might absent himself on any night except Saturday or Monday, on condition that he found a substitute; he had absented himself one night without complying with the term of the agreement, defendant therefore refused to pay him. [also] Zeplin v. Brock. Griffith v Brock.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (17 March 1858), 3

THIS DAY. ST. PATRICK'S DAY St. Joseph's Catholic Church, BEECHWORTH. GRAND HIGH MASS, With Orchestral Accompaniments. AT ELEVEN O'CLOCK. ORCHESTRE Mr. G. Griffiths, First Violin; Weichman, Second Violin; J. P. Hurley, Flute; W. Radford, Viola; Mr. Barlow, Cornet; Jenkins, Sax Tuba; Wright, Violincello; Herr Esther, Double Bass.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (23 June 1858), 3

QUADRILLE - Hibernian, with Solos for Cornet and Flageolet, by Messrs Barlow and Kholer [recte Kohler]-Jullien.

"AMUSEMENTS", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (1 December 1858), 3

BARLOW, Robert (Robert BARLOW, William BARLOW: Billy BARLOW)

Ethiopian  singer, Rock Harmonicon player, musician

Born ? England, 1819
Active Melbourne, VIC, by September 1852
Died Gympie, QLD, 17 February 1907


The probably English-born Robert Barlow was in Melbourne appearing at Rowe's American Circus by September 1852, billed as:

the justly celebrated Mr. Barlow, whose surpassing delineation of negro character has obtained for him from the London audiences and the Press the appellation of Prince of Ethiopian Comedians, in the original Juba Dance ...

This dance had been popularised in London by the performer known as Master Juba, possibly William Henry Lane, who was in London with the Ethiopian Serenaders, and who disappears from the English record at about the time that Barlow appears in Australia.

In February 1853 at T. P. Brower's benefit Barlow was billed as:

Mr. Barlow, the celebrated Ethiopian singer, by kind permission of Mr. J. A. Rowe, will perform several popular airs on the Rock Harmonicon, formed of common pieces of stone, and played upon with sticks. The above curious invention created a complete furor in England upon its first discovery, and is now being played with great success through-out the world. Mr. Barlow will also sing a popular Ballad, accompanied by the full band of the Ethiopian Serenaders.

"Mr. Barlow, the favorite Vocalist" was billed to sing Negro melodies and ballads at Rowe's American Circus in June 1853. He appeared again playing the Rock Harmonicon for John Winterbottom Promenade Concerts in Melbourne in July 1854. According to the Argus, when Barlow's admirers were about to present him with his portrait in September 1854, "There never has appeared on the colonial stage a more versatile and popular singer than Mr. Barlow." The advertisement for the event read:

Presentation Benefit to Mr. Barlow, The celebrated and world-renowned vocalist, on which occasion he will introduce several new characters, new local songs, new chime band of harmonicons, new musical instrument, the flutonion ... Mr. Barlow begs to Inform his patrons that it is his intention to present each and every visitor on his Benefit night with his last new song Forty Shillings, and Take Him Away ...

the words of which had already appeared in the Victoria Songster in April. A Mr. W. Barlow, "Leader of the Orchestra", took his benefit at Astley's Amphitheatre in June 1855 with a performance of the Dramatic Equestrian Spectacle of Mazeppa. Either the same William Barlow, or a relation, was billed there in July as "The Premiere Equestrian of Australia". In November 1855, at the Salle de Valentino, Barlow starred in the Burletta, The Siege of Sebastopol, with songs written for him by James Mulholland.

In January 1867, the Argus reported: "Mr. William Barlow, a vocalist whose popularity in Melbourne and Victoria dates fully fifteen years back, has returned to this country, via New Zealand, after a protracted visit to the British Isles." Before his Launceston performance in February, the press there welcomed:

the well known comic vocalist ... it is almost unnecessary to say anything about Mr. Barlow's powers, to enliven and charm an audience he is too well known. But it may be mentioned that he has lately been on a tour through the various ports of the Indian and China Seas and there he has collected, from observation, manners and customs he intends to delineate and ridicule. He also intends giving "a narrative in song and verse of his perilous adventures when shipwrecked and attacked by pirates in the Chinese Seas".

An Otago advertisement in November 1866 had described him as: "WILLIAM BARLOW, The inimitable negro delineator, musician, and vocalist." Barlow appeared in Sydney again in 1873 billed as "the original Blue Tailed Fly", perhaps confirming Joy Hildebrand's identification of him with Robert "Billy" Barlow, born in England in 1819, and the likely source for George Coppin's Billy Barlow. She traced his death to Gympie, Queensland, on 12 February 1907.


[Advertisement], The Argus (8 September 1852), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (20 October 1852), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 February 1853), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (30 June 1853), 4


"PROMENADE CONCERTS", The Argus (1 August 1853), 5

Notwithstanding the crowds at this concert, the Salle Valentino was filled to overflowing, and Mr. Barlow, with his monster key, unlocked the lands and gave little farms to all with his usual liberality and humor.

"ASTLEY'S AMPHITHEATRE", The Argus (28 September 1854), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 September 1854), 8


[Advertisement], The Argus (26 April 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 June 1855), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 July 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 October 1855), 2

MONDAY, 22nd OCTOBER. Richmond, Near the Cremorne Gardens. Sale by Auction, Not of Shakspeare's House, But the Residence of Robert Barlow, Esq., Of Blue-tail'd Fly Notoriety, Who is leaving for the interior.

[Advertisement], The Argus (8 November 1855), 8

[Advertisement], Otago Daily Times (26 November 1866), 1

[News], The Argus (1 January 1867), 5

[News], Launceston Examiner (4 February 1867), 2

"THE TWO BARLOWS", The Argus (11 April 1868), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 May 1873), 8

"The inimitable Barlow", Empire (21 July 1874), 3

"MOUNT MORGAN", The Capricornian (24 November 1894), 29

"'BILLY' BARLOW. DEATH AT GYMPIE", The Brisbane Courier (18 February 1907), 5

Mr. Robert Barlow, who was better known by the stage name of 'Billy' Barlow, died here this morning, aged 87 years. The deceased in his time sang before audiences in England, on the Continent, and in China, and his song, "The Blue Tail Fly", was of world-wide reputation. He opened the Apollonian Hotel in Gympie in 1868, and celebrated his diamond wedding last year, his widow being four years his junior. Mr. Barlow was in fair health until a couple of weeks ago. He had been suffering from rheumatism. and the heat of the last few days accelerated his end

"TELEGRAMS", The Northern Miner (4 May 1910), 4

Musical sources:

? Barlow's nigger melodist: a choice collection of all the original songs, as sung in America, and by the Ethiopian serenaders and celebrated banjo players, at the London theatres and concerts (London, 1846)

See listing:

Dismbiguation Billy Barlow in Australia:

By no means a first appearance, a song called "Billy Barlow" was included in the Melodist, and mirthful olio (London: H. Arliss, 1828), 155:; see also an American songsheet, Billy Barlow published in Philadelphia in 1836 and words only in The United States Songster (Cincinnati, 1836), 206: Apparently, the character Barlow was originally an Irishman, as was still the case for the Philadelphia songsheet in 1836; however, by the late 1830s, the name had been adopted by an American stage performer, possibly a black-faced minstrel, as noted in The Southern Literary Journal in 1837:

Jim Crow, and Billy Barlow ... Such are the noms du guerre, of two famous, or rather infamous, stage singers ... It is enough to say that they disparage human nature, not to speak of American nature, most terribly. Jim Crow is more notorious than the other monster, and his portrait is in the windows of most picture dealers.

Again far from being an actual first, the first documented Australian performance of the song Billy Barlow was in Launceston in August 1838, by a Mr. Munyard. However, the character and song came to wider popularity when introduced to Sydney audiences by George Coppin in March 1843:

With reference to Mr. and Mrs. Coppin, we have much pleasure in saying that since writing our notice of their arrival ... we have seen several English and Irish papers of recent date, in which their efforts are reviewed in the most flattering terms. The CORK SOUTHERN REPORTER designates Mr. Coppin "the most humorous of the new school of actors," and adverts in extravagant terms to his manner of singing "Billy Barlow," a song which, we learn from THE TUAM HERALD, was sung by him 250 times in Dublin with extraordinary success.

Coppin's arrangement of Billy Barlow was immediately published in Sydney by Thomas Rolfe.

The song that our Barlow became most famous for in Australia was the Blue tailed fly, better known by its chorus Jim crack corn I don't care, first published in the USA c.1846: It was introduced to Sydney in April 1850 by the so-called OHIO SERENADERS (a vocal and instrumental band headed by Frank Howson at the Royal Victoria Theatre).

Disambiguation references:

"FASHIONS IN DRESS", The Southern Literary Journal (August 1837), 529

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (16 August 1838), 2

"THEATRICALS", The Australian (17 March 1843), 2

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE', The Sydney Morning Herald (1 April 1850), 2

Bibliography and resources:

Joy Hildebrand, Hey ho rageddy-o: a study of the Billy Barlow phenomenon, at


Drum player (New Queen's Theatre)

Active Adelaide, 1848


[Advertisement], South Australian (29 February 1848), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian (9 July 1850), 3


Musician, convict

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 26 June 1790 (convict per Neptune)


Barnsley (together with co-accused William Blakeman) was convicted to 7 years transportation at the Berkshire Assizes, Reading, in July 1785, charged with theft. By early 1786 Barnsley had been sent to the Thames hulk Ceres at Woolwich, from where he lodged two petitions seeking a pardon releasing him from his "miserable condition" on the hulk where he was "herded with men whose conversation and ideas, helps to make [my] situation more wretched." He was by "profession an musician" with an "antient mother," a wife and "younger branches" of his family reduced from a comfortable situation to penury ..." He was living at Rose Hill in 1791.

Bibliography and resources:

Flynn 1993, The second fleet, 151


Vocalist, teacher of singing

Active Sydney, NSW, 1841

Possibly Margaret BARRON (below)


At Isaac Nathan's oratorio on 30 June 1841, the vocal performers included "Miss Baron, Miss Sullivan (pupil to Miss Baron)".


"The Oratorio", The Sydney Monitor (2 July 1841), 2

BARRE, Mons. A.

Tenor vocalist

Active Victoria, NSW, 1853-57


[Advertisement], The Argus (5 April 1853), 12

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 April 1853), 10

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 June 1854), 8

"THEATRE ROYAL. LUCREZIA BORGIA", The Argus (8 December 1855), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 August 1855), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 January 1856), 8

"THE THEATRES", The Argus (4 February 1856), 5

[Advertisement], The Star (23 October 1857), 3

BARRON, Margaret (Miss BARRON; ? Miss BARON)

Vocalist (pupil of Sophia Letitia Davis)

Arrived Hobart, TAS, 1832 (per Sophia, from ? Ireland)
Active Hobart, 1833-34; ? Sydney, 1841 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Miss Barron, "only 10 years of age" (elsewhere reportedly 8), gave her first performance in July 1833, "a pupil of Mrs. Davies, who sung two songs, haying acquired in so short a period of instruction so much of the style and manner of her teacher, both gratified and surprised every one". In October 1834, due to the indisposition of her teacher, Sophia Letitia Davis, Margaret appeared as leading female vocalist for George Gordonovitch's Hobart concert. She was the daughter of the Liverpool-street baker, Patrick Barron (c.1790-1865), who, unfortunately, by mid 1837 was insolvent. The family had moved to Sydney by 1839. She is perhaps the Miss Baron who sang in Isaac Nathan's oratorio at St. Mary's Cathedral, Sydney, in June 1841, with her own pupil, a Miss Sullivan.


[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Courier (26 July 1833), 3

... July the 29th ... Part First ... Song, "Alice Gray," Miss Barron, a pupil of Mrs. Davis's, only 10 years of age - Hodson ... Part Second ... Song, "Waters of Elle," - Miss Barron - arranged by T. T. Magrath ...

[News], Colonial Times (30 July 1833), 2-3 

... The next piece was the old ballad, "Alice Grey" - sung by Miss Barron, a very interesting little girl, with a very pretty little voice - and, considering her age only ten years, (as the bill states) she sung the song, we believe, very prettily we say we believe, for the young lady's voice was scarcely heard by above one half the audience. She was, of course, encored - not we suppose because there was any thing prodigiously fine or musical in her singing, but because she was a pretty little infant, appearing before the public in order to do her best to give satisfaction. In the course of time, Miss Barron will no doubt become a good singer:- she has, apparently, all the requisites for a first-rate performer - nor, is a pretty face one of the least of these desirables. As to the propriety of allowing a young child to sing two songs in one evening, it is quite another affair, When adult musicians were not attainable in the Colony, it was all very well to bring forward children to supply the necessary force and interest of musical exhibitions - but when we have such a host of real good musicians, it is a pity to thrust upon the public, children, for the, purpose of taking a share in the musical performance. Children should never be brought forward, unless they have some very extraordinary talent. Last evening, the auditors assembled to hear the music, and not for the purpose of being obliged to countenance the wonderful singing of a child. If children must become musicians, and must perform before the public, why not have an infantine concert, where children shall alone perform - and to which concert every child in the town would be sent to witness the performance ... Miss Barron's "Waters of Ella," could have been dispensed with; besides the song was too difficult for a child, and once or twice she lost herself in the cadences. She was, of course, encored ...

[News], The Hobart Town Courier (2 August 1833), 2

A grand concert of all our professional musical talent was given in the Court house on Monday evening. The house was crammed throughout and the performance especially the instrumental was of the first order. The juveniles were encored of course, but we disapprove of putting old people's caps on the heads of little children. It is, to say the least of it inconsiderate, and is apt to teach the little ones presumption and to forget themselves. It proved however the great industry and success of the teachers, and the little girl Barron, a pupil of Mrs. Davies, who sung two songs, haying acquired in so short a period of instruction so much of the style and manner of her teacher, both gratified and surprised every one.

"To the Editor", Colonial Times (6 August 1833), 3

[News], The Colonist and Van Diemen's Land Commercial and Agricultural Advertiser (20 August 1833), 2 

It may not be generally known, that the parents of that interesting little girl, Miss MARGARET BARRON, who sung, for the first time in public, at the last Concert, are persons in a very unpretending sphere of life, keeping a baker's shop in Liverpool-street, opposite the White Horse. - This lively little creature is only ten years of age, and is now a pupil of Mrs. DAVIS's, who introduced her at the last Concert; after only six months' instruction. The extraordinary progress she has made in so short a period in music and singing, is astonishing in a child of her tender years, and reflects great credit upon Mrs. Davis. They arrived in the Colony, per Sophia, in September last. Mr. Barron is a native of Kilkenny, where he carried on baking and public business, to a considerable extent; but, in consequence of the impoverished state of Ireland, was induced to emigrate hither. We understand that Colonel and Mrs. LOGAN take a lively interest in the welfare of the child and her parents.

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Courier (24 October 1834), 3

... PART 1st ... 4 - Song, 'Annot Lyle', Miss Barron ... PART 2nd ... 4 - Song, " Sul Margine d'un rio," Miss Barron, B. G. H. Gibsone ... 8 - Song, "This Blooming Rose," Miss Barron, Phillipps ... Hodson.

"Mr. Gordonovitch's concert ... ", The Hobart Town Courier (31 October 1834), 3

[Advertisement], Australasian Chronicle (3 July 1841), 1 

? "CASUALTIES", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 February 1884), 7 

BARROW, George

Music-seller, music publisher, composer, artist

Born England 1833
Arrived Swan River Colony, 15 February 1863
Departed 16 September 1870 (for Mauritus)


The first, and apparently shortlived Western Australian musical journal, The minstrelsy of the west, was published in Fremantle in 1864 (no copies known to survive). Possibly the earliest music of any sort published in the colony, its first issue (of only three documented) consisted of a song Success to the west!. Though the reviews of the issue omitted to name the composer, it may well be that the song was the work of the young publisher himself, the lithographer and music-seller George Barrow, a convicted forger, transported to the colony. The West Australian Times, however, at least explained why his efforts would fail, for the time being, to win success:

The music and words are both original, and do credit to the author and composer. The little work displays much taste in the style in which it is brought out. We are truly glad on all occasions to hail and applaud those who, under circumstances of difficulty and depression, strive to make their talents contribute to their support by honest and legitimate means. It is difficult for all to win subsistence in times like the present. How much harder for those who, unused to mere manual labour, have to wage an uphill fight with the world, in an unfruitful field-who have character, trust, and position to regain, whilst struggling for the mere necessaries of life! In the condition of our colony, such a spectacle is far from uncommon. Unfortunately the public are not in circumstances to give much substantial encouragement to literary labourers, but we will hope that success may attend the steps of this infant periodical ...

Barrow later published the first 113 issues of Western Australia's first daily newspaper, The Express, before leaving the colony for Mauritius in mid-1870.


The Proceedings of the Old Bailey; "GEORGE HAMMOND, GEORGE BARROW, Deception & forgery, 10th May 1858"

"THE MINSTRELSY OF THE WEST", The West Australian Times (7 July 1864), 2

see also "GENERAL INTELLIGENCE", The Perth Gazette (22 July 1864), 2

Of a second issue, with the song Wake me early by W. J. Robson [presumably imported],

"GENERAL INTELLIGENCE", The Perth Gazette (22 July 1864), 2

[News], The West Australian Times (25 August 1864), 2

a third, and possibly last, issue may not have contained any music

"GENERAL INTELLIGENCE", The Perth Gazette (16 September 1864), 2

The Express, microfilm copy at SL-WA; Permalink

Bibliography and resources:

George Barrow, DAAO

BARRY, William Hawesworth

Bandmaster, schoolmaster (Kyneton)

Active Kyneton, VIC, before 1858


"LAW REPORT", The Argus (28 April 1858), 6

The insolvent was examined. He had been Denominational schoolmaster at Kyneton ... Insolvent explained this debt by stating that the people of Kyneton some time ago took it into their heads to get up a band. Witness had been a band-master of old, and was appointed to the same post in the Kyneton band that was to be. He acted as Chairman of the preliminary meetings, in which capacity he ordered the instruments for which he was now held accountable. The history of the band was, that after a few months existence the members of it dispersed to various localities, the instruments for the most part disappearing along with them, and the bandmaster was left to pay the bill ...

BARSANTI, Octavius (Ottavio, O.S.F.)

Clergyman, musician, choral conductor

Born Pruno, Italy, 20 October 1827
Arrived Sydney, NSW, about 1866 (from New Zealand)
Died Sydney, NSW, 23 May 1884


1872-07-06: An evening class for sacred music is to be held weekly in St. Mary's Seminary, by Rev. Ottavio Barsanti. The musical taste and abilities of that gentleman are not unknown in Sydney, and no doubt many parents will show their cordial appreciation of the services of the Rev. Mr. Barsanti by sending their sons to this class, which will take place every Tuesday evening from 8 to 9. Grave, andante, and allegro melodies in the threefold ecclesiastical style (Gregorino, fratto, and figuranto), are to be taught in this class.

1872-11-30: The lecture on Music - announced to be delivered on the evening of Friday, the 22nd instant - the feast of St. Cecilia, by the Very Rev. Dr. Barsanti, had, in consequence of the inclemency of the weather, to be postponed until further notice. As, however, at the hour appointed W. A. Duncan, Esq., the president of the society, and all the members of the society with many of their friends were present, the very rev. lecturer addressed those present for over an hour on the subject, pointing out that the reason that day had been chosen for the delivery of the lecture was in honor of St. Cecilia, the Divine Philomela of the church. He, then, proceeded to describe music as the finest of the fine arts, as the daughter of prayer, the handmaid of religion, and as a goddess that had come down to us from heaven, and had a throne among the choirs of the celestials. He showed its magical influence in every state of public, private and domestic life, and concluded that music, being a divine inspiration, must be chiefly employed for religious purposes, and being a divine thing, it must be used so as to create a distaste for the things of this earth, and to kindle in our hearts a love for the things above. Mr. Duncan in proposing a vote of thanks to the lecturer expressed his great satisfaction and said that the lecture had effectually being delivered because he had heard that evening on music even more than he had anticipated. He praised the lecturer for his efforts in establishing in this city a philharmonic society connected with the church. Mr. M'Mahon proposed a vote of thanks to the chairman, which was carried by acclamation. On next Sunday, the first Sunday of advent, there will be a total change of music in the church service. Mass will be sung in pure Gregorian fratto style, arranged by Dr. Barsanti for St. Cecilia Philharmonic Society, and in the evening there will be vespers chanted in the same style. The pains which the Rev. Dr. has taken for this arrangement can scarcely be appreciated by those who have attended his class, but we hope he will be rewarded by a complete success in his persevering efforts, and by the grateful attentions of his pupils.

1884-05-31: On the 23rd instant the Very Rev. Dr. Barsanti, the wellknown Roman Catholic clergyman, died at St. Vincent's Hospital, disease of the heart being, it is supposed, the cause of his unexpected death. The rev. gentleman many years ago occupied a distinguished position in the Church to which he belonged; and enjoyed a singular reputation for power and eloquence as a preacher. Some eight years since, owing to a disagreement with the local authorities of the Roman Catholic Church, Dr. Barsanti ceased to officiate publicly, and entered the Government service as one of the clerical staff in the Lands Department, which appointment he retained till a few weeks ago, when, acting, we are informed, on authority from Rome, the Administrator of the arch-diocese offered a position at St Joseph's, Newtown, which Dr. Barsanti accepted. The return to active priestly labours would appear to have overtaxed both the health and the energy of the rev. gentleman, for he was compelled to seek medical attention in St. Vincent's Hospital soon after resuming official duties. His return to his former position in the Church was hailed with great satisfaction by the Roman Catholic body, and his death, following so soon on what was regarded as a happy event, will doubtless cause much sorrow and regret in the denomination most affected by his sudden demise. Dr. Barsanti was a native of Italy, and a musical enthusiast, inheriting all the passionate love of the divine art for which many of his countrymen are remarkable. Among his co-religionists he was, we understand, held in reverence as a good-hearted, humble, and broad-minded priest, and outside the Roman Catholic body the genial doctor had many genuine friends, whose goodwill he won and preserved by his frank manner and affable and kindly behaviour. The deceased was fairly advanced in years, very many of which he spent in Australia.

1884-06-07: ... Dr. Barasnti was in many respects a remarkable man. Preaching was his forte, and in Church music he was an acknowledged master. He had all the essentials of a preacher, a fine presence, a magnificent voice, an earnest manner, and a cultivated style which set off his rare natural ability to advantage ... Who can describe the wonderful effect of his singing in the solemn offices of the Church? His rich baritone voice of immense power and sympathetic sweetness would fill the largest church, and in the hymns and chants it would peal forth with the power and volume of a great cathedral organ. In the Holy Week services his solemn chanting and singing of the lamentations and prophecies was grandly impressive. Apart from the purely ecclesiastical music he was an enthusiast in the divine art, and there were few standard music works of which he had not some knowledge. He was a composer too of no mean order, but made no display of his talent in this direction. When among friends he would sing more snatches from Favourite operas, and those who ever met him in his "musical moments" will remember how his noble voice used to ring out in "II Balen," the air he was so fond of singing whenever he happened to drop into some family musical circle. He interested himself in the formation of a choral society at St. Mary's, and for a considerable time he trained the vesper choir with remarkable success. In the religious processions the Doctor's voice could be heard above all the rest, and it is related that at one of the grand service at St. Patrick's, Melbourne, the Franciscan monk's vocal organ rang clear and strong above the sound of the great choir and orchestra. Dr. Barsanti was a talented lecturer and an agreeable public speaker. While in Melbourne he delivered several lectures in connection with St. Patrick's Society which were published in pamphlet form, and in Sydney he delivered two or three - one on the "Temporal Power of the Pope" in St. Mary's Seminary and one on "Music" in the Temperance Hall ...


"CATHOLIC CHURCH", Freeman's Journal (22 June 1861), 5

"CELEBRATION OF MARRIAGES", Sydney Mail (2 February 1867), 9

"Music and Drama", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (6 July 1872), 24

"ST. CECILIA PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", Freeman's Journal (30 November 1872), 10

"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 May 1884), 20

"Death of Dr. Barsanti", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (31 May 1884), 1021

"THE LATE VERY REV. DR. BARSANTI, O.S.F.", Freeman's Journal (7 June 1884), 17 


Hazel Riseborough, "Barsanti, Ottavio", Dictionary of New Zealand biography 1 (1990)/Encyclopedia of New Zealand 

BARTLETT, Flora Adelaide

Composer of music

Born Perth, 1885/6


"PROPERTY DISTRIBUTION", West Australian Sunday Times (10 September 1899), 7

Under the heading of "An Independence for 5s." we publish the announcement of Bartlett's Monster Property Distribution, of 40,000 subscribers at 5. The object for which the distribution has been instituted is a most laudable one, being that Mr. C. Bartlett, the proprietor, may secure the wherewithal to send his daughter, Miss Flora Adelaide Bartlett, aged 13, who is a composer of music, to Europe, where she may have every opportunity of obtaining the best possible tuition in the development of her remarkable gift. We have received two of the little lady's compositions- the "Federal Waltz" and the "Grand Triumphal March," the latter being in commemoration of America's victory over Spain. Miss Bartlett composed a piece, entitled the "Trilby Waltz," when only nine years of age ... The registered address, where tickets may be obtained, is C. Bartlett, 12 Royal-Arcade, Perth.

"COMPLIMENTARY PERFORMANCE", Kalgoorlie Miner (16 August 1900), 8



Active Victorian goldfields, 1859-60


"CRITERION CONCERT HALL", The Star (11 April 1859), 3

"STAR CONCERT COMPANY", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (24 October 1859), 2

"STAR THEATRE", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (14 November 1859), 2

... Miss Bartley we cannot speak too highly of as a classical cantatrice with a rich powerful voice, and the song "Little Nell," this lady renders with such depth of feeling and distinct articulation, that makes a tear start to every eye. Mrs. Andrew maintains her reputation as an old favourite. Master Burgees is a great acquisition to the troupe for concerted music, and young Charley never fails to get a genuine encore.

"STAR THEATRE", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (1 December 1859), 2

"ABBOTT'S LYCEUM", Bendigo Advertiser (21 July 1860), 2

BARTON, Charles Hastings

Journalist, politician, songwriter, composer

Born Vevey, Switzerland, 11 Dec 1828
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1853
Died Maryborough, QLD, 16 June 1902, aged 73


Barton was active in musical circles at Tanunda, South Australia, and on record as composer and/or lyricist of three lost songs. Two credited to him alone are From the North Sea's dark waves (song; "Composed expressly for the occasion by Mr. Barton"), see "TANUNDA ...", South Australian Register (13 March 1858), 3:, and There dwellest a spirit in yonder stream ("Mr. Barton was both the writer of the words and the composer of the music"), "TANUNDA ...", South Australian Register (13 March 1858), 3: A third, with Ferdinand Draeger was Advance Australia ("the words by Mr. Charles Barton, of Tanunda, and the music by Mr. Draeger"), was published in 1858, see "NEW MUSIC", South Australian Register (31 August 1858), 2:, and "TANUNDA", South Australian Register (6 October 1858), 3:


see also "THE NEW LABOUR CANDIDATES", Worker (15 February 1902), 4

"Death of Labor Member Barton", Worker (21 June 1902), 2

Bibliography and resources:

John Tidey, "Charles Hastings Barton, colonial journalist", Australian Studies in Journalism 12 (2003), 34-47



Active Sydney, 1851


A "young gentleman named Barton, who evidently did his best to please the audience", supported Caroline Pyne and Elizabeth Emanuel in Abraham Emanuel and George Hudson's weekly "Casino" concerts in March, April, and May 1851.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 April 1851), 1

"THE CASINO", Empire (14 April 1851), 2


Organist, musical instrument tuner and repairer

Active Bendigo, by 1857


[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (4 February 1857), 3

"WALLACE MONUMENT CONCERT", Bendigo Advertiser (14 April 1857), 3

"CHURCH OF ENGLAND", Bendigo Advertiser (20 July 1859), 2

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (30 July 1861), 4

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (19 June 1863), 3

"COUNTY COURT", Bendigo Advertiser (4 July 1865), 2

BARWISE (? Jackson?, John)

General and musical retailer (Jackson and Barwise)

Active Sydney, NSW, 1828-29


In August 1828, apparently having obtained at least some of his stock from John Edwards, John (or Jackson) Barwise, as Barwise, Jackson and Co. (his wife's name was Jackson, and he was later in partnership with his brother-in-law as Barwise and Weller) advertised from his premises at 97, George-street, Sydney:

To the Lovers of Harmony ... two magnificent and fine-toned Pedal Harps, and two elegant portable Royal Harps ... instruction books, pieces of music for harp and piano, and some hundreds of the newest and most fashionable songs and quadrilles; a superior Spanish guitar made by Panarmo [recte Panormo], flageolets, &c ... PIANOFORTES - BROADWOOD MAKER, SEVEN PIANOFORTES for SALE ... consisting of Grand Pianofortes; Harmonic ditto; Cottage ditto; Round cornered Square ditto.

Edwards again recommended Barwise and Weller's musical stock in October 1829. Famously, Barwise later claimed to have found gold in NSW in that very year, 1829.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 August 1828), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Monitor (10 October 1829), 1

"WHO FIRST DISCOVERED GOLD IN AUSTRALIA", The Argus (25 November 1867), 3


Music instructor (fife and drum band)

Died Willunga, SA, 4 February 1875, aged 64


"DEATHS", South Australian Register (5 February 1875), 4

"WILLUNGA", South Australian Register (17 February 1875), 3

The late Mr. J. B. Bassett, whose decease was lately announced, was an old colonist and resided here for 27 years. He established a school under the auspices of the Board of Education, and from the first maintained a first-class position, and the yearly examinations were red-letter days in the town. Mr. Bassett in some cases educated two generations, and many of his former pupils were at his funeral. The deceased was often at the front in philanthropic movements, and was remarkable for the energy and zeal he threw into anything he took in hand. Amongst many other things was the establishment of a Band of Hope, which for years has been kept together by his almost unaided exertions, for in the surrounding districts they soon collapsed for want of such a staunch supporter. He established a Drum and Fife Band, and personally instructed the members in music at his residence.


Vocalist, musical memorialist

Baptised London, 22 September 1818
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1853
Died North Adelaide, SA, 10 September 1883, aged 65


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (14 November 1853), 2

"THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CATHEDRAL", South Australian Register (2 April 1861), 3

"DEATHS", South Australian Register (11 September 1883), 4


Thomas Bastard, The autobiography of Cockney Tom (Adelaide: McClory and Masterman, 1881)

Extracts: "After a time I was summoned by the Bishop, and told it was my duty to join the choir. I explained that I was but a poor scholar, and did not understand English, much less Latin; but he introduced me to Father Maurice Lencioni, a good man, who held the office of choir singing-master and confessor, and whose duty it was to visit the sick, bury the dead, and bring young people together for marriage. Everybody liked this priest, myself particularly. He was an Italian, a splendid musician, and gifted with a good voice; he undertook to teach me the Latin service, and he had his work to do. It was a long time before I could manage it; but at length I succeeded fairly well, but never became A1."

"About this time that great singer Madame Anna Bishop paid a visit to Adelaide, accompanied by Mr. George Loder, an accomplished musician. They took apartments at the York Hotel, kept by a Mrs. Bray, who conceived such a liking for Madame that in her will she bequeathed her a legacy of one thousand pounds, besides making her other presents. Madame required a local agent, and Mrs. Bray, knowing me, recommended me to her. I was accordingly sent for and engaged to make myself generally useful, to sing when required, and to act as money taker at her concerts, and White's Rooms were fixed upon and engaged by me from the proprietor, Mr. Geo. White, on behalf of Madame. The bank authorities allowed me the privilege of taking the engagement of White's Rooms so long as I did not neglect my duty at the bank, and by such engagements I was brought into the society of all the leading artists who visited Adelaide. Perhaps it would not be out of place to mention some of their names, viz., Madame Caley, fellow pupil of Jenny Lind, Richard W. Kohler, Miska Hanser, the greatest violinist that ever came to Australia, Linly Norman, Richard White, Madame Carandini, Walter Sherwin, Madame Goddard, the premier pianist, W. Montgomery, B. Fairclough, and many others."

[Bastard also gives a detailed account of his musical experiences on the Victorian goldfields in 1853.]

Bibliography and resources:

BAT, James ("dictus Noctivagus") (pseudonymn)

Columnist, poet, songwriter

Active Sydney, NSW, 1840s


The poems and opinions of James Bat, "dictus Noctivagus" ("night wanderer", or perhaps sleepwalker), are discussed in a loose, irregular series of whimsical, satirical columns in the Sydney Herald between 1845 and 1848. At first a suburban poet, from Pyrmont, Bat later finds work in the bush, "a congenial duty in keeping off the dingoes or native dogs from the flocks" at the Warragal Station.


"ORIGINAL CORRESPONDENCE", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 June 1845), 2

"ORIGINAL POETRY. THE SEPTEMBER MUSQUITO", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 September 1845), 3

"COLLOQUIES AND SOLILOQUIES OF A SILK-GROWER", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 December 1845), 2

"SUBURBAN POERTRY", The Sydney Morning Herald (5 November 1847), 2

"POETRY FROM THE CROWN LANDS", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 December 1847), 2

The Squatter's song of triumph

Come tell me now of hill and dale,
Of grassy plain and flowing river;
Of banks, where mighty trees prevail,
And creeks their wintry wealth deliver;
Of ridges sheltering from the gale,
And gullies that from neighbours sever,
Our squattage there we will entail,
To us and to our heirs for ever.

Come speak of stations and of stock,
Of bullocks talk and tale deliver,
The weaning and the fattening flock,
The rams and ewes that fail us never,
Make not of milkless tea a mock.
For doughy damper praise the giver.
Our squattage now no power shall dock,
But be to us and ours for ever!

"THE SICK MAN'S DREAM", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 May 1848), 3


Organist, choirmaster

Active Maitland, NSW, 1859-60


"PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", The Maitland Mercury (6 August 1859), 2

"MAITLAND SCHOOL OF ARTS", The Maitland Mercury (3 September 1859), 3

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (12 November 1859), 1

"THE PHILHARMONIC INSTITUTE", The Maitland Mercury (9 February 1860), 3

"MAITLAND PHILHARMONIC INSTITUTE", The Maitland Mercury (12 April 1860), 2

"MAITLAND PHILHARMONIC INSTITUTE", The Maitland Mercury (16 May 1861), 2


Teacher of music

Active Sydney, NSW, 1833


Together with William Cavendish (for dancing) and George Sippe, Miss Bates was a music teacher on as on the prospectus of Mr. and Mrs. Davies's Boarding and Day School in Sydney in 1833.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 August 1833), 3

BATES, Daisy

Indigenous culture and song reporter

Born Tipperary, Ireland, 16 October 1863
Arrived Australia, 1884
Died Prospect, SA, 18 April 1951 (NLA persistent identifier)


Papers: University of Adelaide, Library, Rare books and special collections, MSS 572.994 B32t 

Associations: Nebinyan

BATES, Joseph

Street singer, vagrant

Active Sydney, NSW, 1850


"THE POLICE REGISTER", Bell's Life in Sydney (22 June 1850), 2

WHY ARE YOU WANDERING HERE I PRAY? -Far advanced in years and remarkable, peculiarly remarkable, for his very disagreeable style of countenance and dingy costume, Joseph Bates, (better known in the vicinity of the Rocks as the "Girl I left behind me," for his continual patronage of that sweet Irish melody) ...

BATES, Percy (Percy Alexander Charles)

Tenor vocalist, teacher of singing

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1892
Died Strathfield, NSW, 8 April 1949, aged 79


[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 August 1892), 5

At the monthly musical service held in the Pitt Street Congregational Church last night, Mendelssohn's "Hear My Prayer" was rendered by a large choir ... The Rev. W. Scott preached ... after which Sullivan's anthem, "I will sing of Thy power," was rendered, Mr. Percy Bates taking the tenor solo. Mr. E. J. Massey presided at the organ. There was a large congregation.

"THE NEW CATHEDRAL TENOR", Freeman's Journal (7 March 1896), 15

Mr. Percy Bates has besn appointed principal tenor of St. Mary's Cathedral choir, in succession to the late Mr. James Hinchy. Mr. Bates is a well known Sydney singer, and adds to a fine voice musical knowledge and refined taste. He is a member of the Sydney Liedertafel, and was for some time the tenor soloist of St. Benedict's. Mr. Bates, who is an excellent reader, will be of special service in the concerted music. The appointment, which is fully approved of by Mr. J. A. Delany, the Cathedral organist, cannot fail to give satisfaction to the congregation. Going back about 25 years, James Keane, James Hinchy, D. Gunning, and P. J. Barrett may be named among those who have filled the position of principal tenor at St. Mary's.

"COLUMN 8", The Sydney Morning Herald (31 March 1948), 1

AMONG the congregation at St. Andrew's Cathedral on Sunday were two friends who were in the choir 66 years ago. They are Mr. Percy Bates, of Strathfield, and Mr. Walter Davies, of Glebe. Mr. Bates, now 79, is still in the choir. He was one of Sydney's leading tenors and toured England from 1903 to 1909. Mr. Davies, now 80, is Sydney's oldest and most travelled photographer.

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 April 1949), 16

"COLUMN 8", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 April 1949), 1 

ONE of the choristers in the memorial service to the late Percy Bates, oldest member of St. Andrew's Cathedral choir, was Mr. Walter Davies, who will soon be 81. Before that Mr. Davies had not sung in a church choir for 63 years. He and Mr. Percy Bates were both members of the Cathedral choir 67 years ago. They lost contact with each other until a par in this column, stating that Mr. Davies had sent a food parcel to the youngest boy of the Manchester Cathedral choir - of which he had been youngest member 72 years before - was read by Mr.Bates.


Music teacher, contralto vocalist (Melbourne Philharmonic)

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1857


"PRAHRAN MECHANICS' INSTITUTION", The Argus (27 January 1857), 5

"MR. KROM'S BENEFIT CONCERT", The Argus (3 December 1857), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (27 July 1857), 7

"THE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (22 September 1858), 5

It is to be regretted that the work does I not contain more than the one contralto passage which was assigned to Mrs. Batten, for this lady's voice is of the purest and most equable quality, and with a little more practice will exhibit a power of which at present the possessor is scarcely aware.

[News], The Argus (4 July 1860), 4

"THE MESSIAH. THE PHILHARMONIC", The Argus (26 December 1862), 5

BAXTER, Mrs. T. P.

Teacher of music

Active Maitland, NSW, 1846


[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (26 September 1846), 3

"Married", The Maitland Mercury (18 August 1847), 3


Contralto vocalist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1857


Baxter, a "professor of singing at the Royal Academy of Music", made her first appearance in Melbourne in March 1857 as co-artist to Anna Bishop.


"THE MELBOURNE HOSPITAL CONCERT", The Argus (30 March 1857), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (30 March 1857), 8


"MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (29 April 1857), 5

BAYER, Louis

Musician, composer, librettist

Born Germany, 1858
Arrived Victoria, c. 1873
Died Warrnambool, VIC, 28 October 1907 (NLA persistent identifier)


"PERSONAL", Camperdown Chronicle (31 October 1907), 3

A man who was possessed of many good qualities, rare musical gifts, warm-hearted generosity, and the exceptionally strong personal magnetism that gains numerous friends, passed away at Warrnambool on Monday night in Mr. Louis Bayer. His death occurred under particularly sad circumstances. Some months ago he wrote and composed an opera, The Golden West, which, musically, had much to recommend it. It was produced under unfavourable conditions in various   district centres and, though financially unsuccessful, met with an amount of appreciation which Mr. Bayer considered warranted another attempt. He, therefore, engaged a professional company and   arranged to play at Warrnambool during show week, with the neighbouring towns to follow. This enterprise proved even more disastrous than the former, and, worse still, entailed an amount of work   and worry which completely prostrated   him. He collapsed completely when in Camperdown last week and was removed to Warrnambool, where he grew worse and death ensued on Monday. The late Mr. Bayer was a native of Germany, but came to Victoria a young man. From Melbourne, where he had been professionally engaged, he came to Cobden about 28 years ago. After a residence there of about 12 months he went to New South Wales, and spent some time as a trapper. He returned to this district in 1883. On 24th October of that year, according to an old diary of Mr. W. Fielder's, a meeting was held in the Mechanics' Institute (now the Mechanics' Chambers) for the purpose of forming a music society. ... Mr. Bayer afterwards wrote and composed the opera, Federation, which was produced for the first time on 21st June, 1887, to a crowded house ... In May the following year, Muutchaka was produced, and was repeated in Warrnambool. These operas found great favor, and for several years after were played with much success. The late Mr. Bayer went to reside at Warrnambool in August, 1891, and afterwards wrote the operas Dora, The Barber of Krugersdorp and The Golden West. He was a devout lover of nature in all its varied forms. The bush life of Australia appealed to him strongly and furnished his subjects and inspired his music, which is thoroughly descriptive of, and thoroughly in harmony with the spirit of the Australian bush ...

Musical works:

The Leura waltz (arranged by L. Bayer) (Lithography by Troedel & Co)

Federation  (opera in 2 acts; libretto and music by L. Bayer) (Libretto: Melbourne : Kemp and Boyce, 1887)

Muutchaka; or, the last of his tribe (opera in 2 acts; libretto and music by L. Bayer) (Libretto: Melbourne: Kemp and Boyce, 1888): The moon shine's bright (Serenade from the opera Federation) and Weep with me (Prayer from the opera Muutchaka) ([Melbourne: lithography by Troedel & Co., 1888])

The Irishman's song (from the opera Dora; words and music by Louis Bayer (Warrnambool: R. A. Philp, [1895]) Exhibition Cantata (words: J. S. Stanley; music: L. Bayer) [Warrnambool, 1896]

The barber of Krugersdorp (comic opera; word book) ([Camperdown/Warrnambool: 1900])

Bibliography and resources:

Eric Irvin, "Louis Bayer (1858-1907), composer to the man on the land", Southerly 48/3 (September 1988), 284-297

BEALE, Octavius Charles

Piano manufacturer

Born Mountmellick, Laois, Ireland, 23 February 1850
Arrived Hobart, TAS, December 1854
Died Stroud, NSW, 16 December 1930 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Teacher of Music, Violin, Viola and Violoncello

Active Melbourne and Sydney, 1852


[Advertisement], The Argus (5 June 1852), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 December 1852), 1

BEAUMONT, Daniel Abraham (younger brother of Armes BEAUMONT)

Vocalist, conductor

Born Norfolk, England, 1 August 1843
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1848
Died North Melbourne, VIC, 17 May 1897


"DEATH OF MR. D. A. BEAUMONT", The Age (18 May 1897), 6. (FIRST EDITION) 

Sincere regret will be felt among a very large circle on learning of the death of Mr. D. A. Beaumont, one of the best known and respected of amateur musicians in Melbourne. Professionally Mr. Beaumont was a lithographic printer. He served his time to the business with Messrs. Chas. Troedel and Co., and was afterwards in the lithographic rooms of Messrs. Sands and M'Dougall and Messrs. E. Whitehead and Co. For about 16 years past he was in the railway service as lithographic printer supervising the reproduction of the plans and sections required by both branches of the engineering staff. It was through his musical attainments and achievements, however, that he had become most widely and favorably known. The fact that he was brother of Mr. Armes Beaumont no doubt helped his popularity, but he had sterling ability of his own, and though his connection with music had not the same brilliant publicity as attached to the roles of the popular operatic artist, his long and diligent devotion to the art might be favorably compared to that of many professionals ...

Death of Mr. D. Beaumont", North Melbourne Gazette (21 May 1897), 3 

On Monday last Mr. D. A. Beaumont passed away, after a long and painful illness. He was a native of Norfolk, England, having been born on August 1st, 1843. He came out to Victoria with his parents when only five years old. He was naturally a musician, and was connected with almost every musical society in Melbourne. He was one of the founders of the Melbourne Philharmonic Society and the Melbourne Liedertafel. He also took a lively interest in sacred music, and for some 17 years he was percentor [sic] in the Union Memorial Church North Melbourne, under the Rev. A. Kinnimont and the Rev. Dr. Gilchrist. For five years he led in the Rev. D. S. Eacharn's church, St Andrew's, Carlton, and for the past two years and a half at the Rev. A. Stewart's church, St John's, Essendon. He was for eight years conductor of the Victorian Railways Musical Society, and many were the social evenings of other associations at which this well-trained little choir gave its acceptable contributions to the harmony. The cause of his death was cancer, but it was not till some seven weeks ago that he took to his bed. Thee funeral took place last Wednesday, a large number of he leading townsmen being present to do his memory honor ... The Melbourne Liedertafel paid a touching tribute to the friendship they bore the deceased by gathering round and in the pouring rain singing two devotional hymns ... At the time of his death he was 53 years of age, and he leaves a sorrowing widow and eight children to mourn their sad loss.

BEAUMONT, Edward Armes

Tenor vocalist

Born ? 1840; baptised Ingham, Norfolk, England, 15 December 1842
Arrived Melbourne, NSW (VIC) 1848
Active publicly by May 1860
Died North Melbourne, VIC, 17 July 1913 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


Vocalist (sister of the above)

BEAUMONT, Sarah Hannah (see Mrs. J. H. FOX)

Soprano vocalist (sister of the above)




"Members of the newly-formed Fitzroy Musical Union ...", The Argus (11 May 1860), 5

... The tenor music was alloted to Mr. Beaumont, a young singer of no great style or power of voice, but with qualities which culture will develops into usefulness. He gave the air, In native worth, with a good deal of sweetness and expression, and was most deservedly encored.

[News], The Argus (5 October 1860), 4

[News], The Argus (10 June 1862), 4

"TOPICS OF THE DAY", The South Australian Advertiser (22 July 1863), 2


"ARMES BEAUMONT. GREAT TENOR DEAD", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 July 1913), 10 

Bibliography and resources:

Kenneth Hince, Beaumont, Edward Armes (1842-1913), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

Obituaries Australia:

BECKER, Franz Louis Leopold, R.A.M.

Professor of Music, pianist, organist, composer
Born Germany, c.1840
Active Newcastle, NSW, by 1870
Died Bundaberg, QLD, 27 July 1897 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Summary (family history):

BECKER Franz Louis Leopold, R.A.M., son of Prof. Louis BECKER, Kapellmeister to the King of Hanover; born c.1840 Germany; was a "welcome visitor to the palace, joining the younger branches in duets etc. He was a student at the Leipzig conservatorium for 6 years, (the highest musical college in the world) and passed with grand eclat after his performance before 5000 auditors. His sound knowledge of theory music could not be surpassed on this side of the globe"; conducted Madame Agatha States Opera Co. through America, California and Chile and also Madame Anna Bishop's grand concerts ...


[Advertisement], The Newcastle Chronicle (20 January 1870), 1

[Advertisement], The Newcastle Chronicle (10 February 1870), 1

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (25 October 1870), 1

; "Myrtle Villa Polka", The Newcastle Chronicle (22 January 1876), 4

"Herr Franz Becker of Newcastle ...", Evening News (28 March 1876), 2

"Musical Composition", The Newcastle Chronicle (1 April 1876), 4

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (23 June 1883), 8

"New Music", Queensland Figaro and Punch (22 August 1885), 22

"New Music", Queensland Figaro and Punch (11 May 1889), 10s

"New Music", Evening News (8 January 1897), 3

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1897), 4

"NEW MUSIC", Australian Town and Country Journal (16 January 1897), 44

"WOMAN'S COLUMN", Freeman's Journal (16 January 1897), 10

[News], Morning Bulletin (31 July 1897), 5

... Herr Becker, who was born in Hanover in 1840, came to the colonies in the middle of the seventies, having previously travelled almost in every part of the globe, and spent several years in Chile. From Melbourne he came up to Charters Towers, where he remained for six years, and eventually came to Bundaberg with his wife and her family in 1883. With the exception of a few months, when he removed to Sydney, he lived continuously in this town, giving instructions in music. As a brilliant pianist he had no equal in this district, and in musical circles his presence will be greatly missed. A widow and four children, ranging in age from thirteen to four years, are left to mourn their irreparable loss.

"Local and General News", The Bundaberg Mail and Burnett Advertiser (30 July 1897), 2 

[Probate], The Brisbane Courier (21 August 1897), 10

"EARLY MUSIC ON CHARTERS TOWERS", The Northern Miner (30 May 1945), 8

Musical works:

Love's philosophy (ballad; poetry by Shelley; music by Franz Becker; Sung by Madame Anna Bishop) (Sydney: Elvy & Co.; Melbourne: W. H. Glen, [? 1870])

The W.K.L., or, Myrtle Villa polka (composed for the pianoforte by Franz Becker) (West Maitland: H. Paskins, [1876])

The merry brewer of Bundaberg (morceau de danse; dedicated to Gustav Steindl, brewer, of Bundaberg) (Sydney/Brisbane: W. H. Paling, [1897])

BECKER, Ludwig

Transcriber of Indigenous songs, ? birdsongs, artist, naturalist

Born near Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 5 September 1808
Arrived Launceston, TAS, 10 March 1851
Died Bullo Rover, QLD, 29 April 1861 (NLA persistent identifier)


According to (Lady) Caroline Denison, with whom Becker stayed:

... he is one of those universal geniuses who can do anything ... a very good naturalist, geologist ... draws and plays and sings, conjures and ventriloquises and imitates the notes of birds so accurately/

He wrote and illustrated his own Ein Australisch Lied (Melbourne, 1860) ("to be sung when one is well, to the tune: "Mannheim eine schöne Stadt ...").

Becker joined Burke's exploring expedition, leaving Melbourne on 20 August 1860, and in a despatch sent back from Menindee to the Royal Society of Victoria on 27 November, he included 2 Indigenous songs, YAAM-SONG (CORROBOREE SONG) (translation), and ANARUKA-SONG (CREEK-SONG) (text, music, translation). He died with his colleagues William Purcell and Charles Stone at the expedition's camp on the western bank of Koorliatto Waterhole, Bulloo River in 1861.

See main entry on Becker's Indigenous song transcriptions: 


"ROYAL SOCIETY OF VICTORIA", The Argus (11 December 1860), 5

"FUNERAL HONOURS BY AN EYE-WITNESS", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 February 1863), 5

Bibliography and resources:

Marjorie J. Tippling, Becker, Ludwig (1808-1861), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

Ludwig Becker, DAAO (Design & Art Australia Online)

BECKER, Richard (Carl Richard)

Violinist, teacher of violin (Conservatoire of Music, Stettin, Germany), conductor

Born ? Stettin, Germany
Active Yea, VIC, by 1891 to Manly, 1935 or later 



Died Manly, NSW, 26 December 1935, aged 59


"CORRESPONDENCE", Alexandra and Yea Standard (11 September 1891), 2

[Advertisement], Yea Chronicle (8 June 1893), 2

"MARRIAGES", The Argus (23 December 1895), 1

"YEA ORCHESTRA CONCERT", Yea Chronicle (27 May 1897), 2

"SOCIAL ITEMS", Evening News (22 November 1902), 3s

"CLARENCE TOWN", The Maitland Mercury (8 December 1909), 6

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 December 1935), 6



BECKFORD, Thomas Leaman

Organist, amateur musician, violoncello player, cellist, merchant, warehouseman

Born ? UK, c. 1785
Active Launceston, VDL (TAS) by 1835
Died Launceston, TAS, 12 November 1852, aged 67


Beckford, "an old and highly esteemed fellow colonist" was reduced to the "state of absolute penury" by an investment disaster in 1842. He was one of the orchestra for John and Eliza Bushelle's Launceston concert in March 1843. He gave a subscription concert with Joseph Megson in November 1844. Himself deputising in the position, Beckford wrote a letter to the press in July 1845 concerning Joseph Megson's appointment as organist at St. John's, mentioning also Mrs. Nairn, Edmund Leffler, and Francis Howson senior. At Mrs. Chester's concert in September 1848:

A celebrated Sinfonia by Haydn was performed by a portion of the band, assisted by Mr. Beckford, who lent the music for the occasion. Mr. Bishop the master of the Band, and Mr. Howson, Senr., displayed much ability in this portion of the entertainment.


[News], The Hobart Town Courier (16 January 1835), 2

The concert at the British Hotel on Wednesday evening was most respectably attended, and the gentlemen amateurs deserve much praise for their exertions to gratify the company, Mrs. Davis presided at the piano-forte, and was very ably supported by Messrs. Munce, jun. (on the violin), Curzon (German flute), and Beckford (violincello). Ibid. [= Launceston Independent]

[Advertisement], Launceston Advertiser (21 April 1842), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Advertiser (27 May 1842), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Advertiser (30 March 1843), 1

[Advertisement], The Cornwell Chronicle (20 November 1844), 2

"ORGANIST", Launceston Examiner (12 July 1845), 3

"ORIGINAL CORRESPONDENCE", The Cornwall Chronicle (19 July 1845), 9

"SERMONS AT ST. JOHN'S AND TRINITY", The Cornwall Chronicle (21 June 1848), 2

We may just observe, that the chanting and singing at St. John's was very good, and Mr. Beckford, the Organist, deserves praise for his attention to this portion of the Church service. The Miserere was tastefully performed.

"Mrs. Chester's Concert", The Cornwall Chronicle (13 September 1848), 19

"Church Music", The Cornwall Chronicle (2 February 1850), 77

A short time since, we had occasion to notice the improvement that was being made with respect to the Choir of St. John's Church, which is composed of young persons (male and female) who have devoted nearly all their spare time gratuitously, in promoting the advancement of the psalmody of the Church. Since then, the improvement made in the singing, has been the theme of universal approbation, and for which the congregation are, in a great measure indebted to our old respected townsman Mr. Beckford, who has for nearly the last four years presided at the organ, during which time, he has been untiring in his endeavours to instruct the young Choristers under his superintendence; several favorite anthems, a beautiful sanctus, and some other sacred pieces, have been introduced by Mr. Beckford, which have given the utmost satisfaction.

"The late Mr. Beckford", The Cornwall Chronicle (24 November 1852), 780

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (24 November 1852), 2

"DEATHS", Launceston Examiner (5 March 1868), 4

"REMINISCENCES. [BY. B]", Launceston Examiner (12 November 1892), 2

BEDFORD, Virginia M. (Miss)

Amateur musician, composer

Active Hobart, TAS, c.mid 1850s


"MARRIAGES", The Hobart Town Mercury (12 July 1859), 2

Musical work:

The forget me not waltz ("Affectionately dedicated to Mrs. Bedford") (Hobart Town: Huxtable and Deakin, [185-?])

Bibliography and resources:

Peter Bolger, Bedford, Edward Samuel (1809-1876), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

BEE, Walter John

Singing master, organist, school teacher

Active Victoria, by 1875


[News], The Record and Emerald Hill and Sandridge Advertiser (23 July 1875), 2

"MARRIAGES", Illustrated Australian News (19 January 1876), 14

"LITTLE RIVER", The Bacchus Marsh Express (4 October 1879), 3

"A MODEL SCHOOL TEACHER", Bendigo Advertiser (18 April 1882), 2

BEER, Bernard

Musiclover, broker

Active Sydney, NSW, 1864


Beer was perhaps related to the Bernard Beer who was father of the English composer John Barnett (1802-1890), of The mountain sylph fame, and a cousin of Meyerbeer.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (31 January 1854), 1

"MEYERBEER. To the Editor", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 July 1864), 12

Sir, - May I beg the favour of your causing the insertion of the few following words in your next issue. The mail has just brought to us the intelligence of the death of the great composer, Meyerbeer, the author of the operas "Les Huguenots" and "Le Prophète," so successfully presented to us last season, by Mr. Lyster's company. His death is much deplored, not only in musical circles, but in the whole of England, Germany, and France, where he was known not only as one of the great composers, but as a sterling good man - indeed, no one had reason to say the slightest word against him. As a great admirer of the compositions of the deceased, and a personal friend of many years standing, I am anxious to honour his memory in some way, and I think that a fitting time has now arrived for doing so. What I venture to propose is, that a grand concert be given, chiefly from the repertoire of the great composer, to be called the "Meyerbeer Memorial Concert," and the proceeds handed over to the committee for the relief of the sufferers by the late calamitous floods ... From my personal knowledge of Meyerbeer, I knew him to be possessed of much charity, and nothing would have afforded him more pain than to know that any friend was in distress while he had the means of relieving him. ... I am, Sir, your obedient servant, BERNARD BEER.

"MEYERBEER. To the Editor", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 July 1864), 6

? "ENEMY ORIGIN", Truth (8 June 1918), 6


Violinist, composer, teacher of music, piano tuner

Active Bendigo, VIC, by ? 1865


"BOROUGH POLICE COURT", Bendigo Advertiser (1 April 1865), 1 supplement 

"COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT TO MRS. ELLIS", Bendigo Advertiser (5 October 1867), 2

... Mrs. Fatherley presided at the organ during the performance of these selections from the oratorio, Herr Gollmick acting as conductor, Mr. Behdau as first violin, Mr. Hallas with the cornet, and Mr. Warden as double bass.

"COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT TO NORTHCOTT'S BAND", Bendigo Advertiser (15 November 1867), 2

... of all the performances of the evening commend us to the one on a single stringed violin by Mr. Behdan, accompanied on the piano by Mrs. Fatherley. It was rapturously applauded, and another piece of his own composition given with like effect ... After a song by Mr. Hobbs, who does not do his voice justice, another treat followed in a duet - Mr. Behdan on his one-stringed violin, and Herr Gollmick on the piano ...

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (11 May 1869), 1 

MR. BEHDAN, Tuner of the Pianoforte and Harmonium; And Teacher of Music in general. VICTORIA HOTEL, WAHGUNYAH.

BELBIN, William

Amateur bass vocalist, politician

Born Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1825
Died Sydney, NSW, 26 June 1892, aged 66



"THE ORATORIO", The Courier (23 May 1846), 3

"THE CHORAL SOCIETY", The Courier (5 December 1846), 2

"CHORAL SOCIETY", Colonial Times (17 November 1848), 2

[Advertisement], The Courier (21 July 1849), 3

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 June 1892), 1

"MR. WILLIAM BELBIN", Launceston Examiner (28 June 1892), 3


Comic vocalist, songwriter, playwright

Active NSW, by 1846
Died Redfern, NSW, 13 April 1883, aged 61


"SINGLETON", The Maitland Mercury (17 June 1846), 2

"SINGLETON. THE THEATRE", The Maitland Mercury (17 April 1847), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 December 1847), 1

[Advertisement], "QUEEN'S THEATRE", The Argus (4 July 1850), 3

"LITERARY", The Argus (16 February 1849), 2

"RETRIBUTION, OR THE DRUNKARD'S CURSE", Bell's Life in Sydney (21 June 1851), 2

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 July 1852), 2

"NEW INSOLVENTS", The Argus (30 September 1861), 6

Francis Belfield, late of Redbank, near Avoca, comedian, now a prisoner in Her Majesty's Gaol, Inglewood. Causes of insolvency - Losses in theatrical speculations, pressure of creditors, and imprisonment. Assets, £27; liabilities, £412 4s. 6d.; deficiency, £385 4s. 6d.

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 April 1883), 1

BELFIELD.-April 13, at the residence of his son-in-law, Mr. John Brown, 42, Burnett-street, Redfern, Francis Belfield, for many years connected with the theatrical profession in Victoria and Sydney, greatly respected by all who knew him, aged 61 years.

"THE LATE MR. F. BELFIELD", Clarence and Richmond Examiner and New England Advertiser (15 May 1883), 3 

Extant plays:

Retribution; or, The drunkard's curse (a domestic drama in two acts) (Melbourne: printed at the Daily News office, 1849)

The rebel chief  (a play in three acts by Francis Belfield; this drama was first produced December 14th, 1849, at the Queen's Theatre, Melbourne) (Melbourne: William Clarke, Printer, Morning Herald office, 1850)


Surgeon and amateur singer

Born 1764
Australia and Tasmania, 1801-1802 (on the Géographe)
Died 1835



On 31 January 1802, Péron and Beleffin encountered a group of Bruny Island women and exchange of songs (between Bellefin and the woman later identified as Arra-maïda) and dances took place. The account of the incident first appeared in Péron 1807, was published in English in Péron 1809. Excerpts also later appeared in Bonwick 1870 (newly translated from Péron 1807), Bonwick 1884, and Fenton 1884 (abridged from Bonwick 1870).

1809 (Péron): On the 31st of January, early in the morning, I landed on the isle Bruny. A boat from the Naturalist and our longboat, had brought a considerable number of people on shore on this island, either to fish or to get wood for the ships ... and without pursuing the natives, which the swiftness of foot peculiar to these people would have made hopeless, we contented ourselves with calling to them, shewing them several different things as presents, and at the same time waving our handkerchiefs. At these demonstrations of friendship they hesitated an instant, and then stopped, as if to wait for us. We now discovered that they were women, and that there was not a single male among the party. We were advancing nearer, when one of the oldest of them leaving her companions a few steps in the rear, made signs to us to stay where we were, and to sit down, calling aloud to us médi, médi (sit down, sit down); she seemed also to desire us to lay down our arms, of which they seemed to be in some fear. These preliminaries being settled, the women squatted on their heels, and from that moment seemed to shew all the natural vivacity of their character without the least reserve, and speaking altogether, asked us a number of questions, seeming often to criticise our appearance, and laugh heartily at our expence, making a thousand odd gestures and contortions. M. Bellefin began to sing, at the same time using a great deal of action; the women immediately kept silence, observing with as much attention the motions of M. Bellefin as they seemed to give to the sound of his voice. At the end of every verse some applauded him with loud acclamations, others laughed heartily, while the young women, being more timid, kept silence, and expressed their surprize and satisfaction only by their looks and gestures ... one only, among all her companions, had preserved any degree of confidence, with a lively and merry temper: this was she who had imposed the preliminary conditions which I mentioned above. After M. Bellefin had concluded his song, she began to mimic his action and the tone of his voice, in a very pleasant and truly original manner, which much diverted her companions: she next began herself to sing, with such a rapidity of expression, that it would be very difficult to give any idea of music, such as it was, so different from the general principles of any European music. Their tunes seem entirely to accord with their language; for these people speak with such quickness and volubility, that it is impossible, as we shall shew hereafter, to distinguish their pronunciation with any degree of precision: it is a sort of rolling sound, for which our European languages do not furnish any expression of comparison or analogy. Excited by the sound of her own voice, which we did not fail to applaud with much warmth, and doubtless wishing to obtain our admiration in other respects, our jovial Diemenese began to dance, and to throw herself into divers attitudes, some of which might be thought very indecent, if in this state of society, men were not still absolutely strangers to all the delicacy of sentiment and conduct, which among us is only the consequence of complete civilization. While all this was passing, I employed myself in minuting all the particulars which I have here given, and many other observations, which will with more propriety be produced at a future time. I was doubtless observed by this same woman, who had exerted herself so much to entertain us; for she had no sooner finished her dance, than she came close to me, and taking from a bag made of rushes, such as I have before described, some charcoal which it contained, she crushed it between her hands, and with an obliging air she began to apply it on my face, as is customary in these regions. I willingly submitted to this obliging piece of caprice: M. Heirisson had the same complaisance, and was ornamented with a similar mask. We now seemed to be very much admired by these women; they appeared to regard us with a degree of sweet satisfaction and pleasure, and seemed to congratulate us on the acquisition of such an addition to our beauty. Thus it appears that the fairness of skin, of which Europeans are so vain, is an absolute defect, and a sort of deformity, which, in these distant climates, must yield the palm of beauty to the blackness of coal, or the colour of red ochre.


Pianoforte maker, carpenter

Born England, c.1784
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 14 October 1833 (per Indianna, from London, 20 March)
Died Sydney, NSW, 17 October 1845, aged 61

BENHAM, Daniel

Pianoforte maker, repairer and tuner

Departed Sydney, NSW, 21 April 1849 (per Spencer, for San Francisco)


"ARRIVALS", The Sydney Herald (17 October 1833), 2

"SUPREME COURT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (9 July 1835), 3

... John Benham examined: I am a piano-forte maker, and have repaired the piano two or three months ago; it was a very good one, worth £68; an old instrument that stands the climate is as valuable as a new one, because a new one cannot be depended on.

"SUPREME COURT", The Sydney Herald (13 July 1835), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (10 December 1835), 3

MR. JOHN BENHAM begs to acquaint the Ladies and Gentlemen of the Colony, that he has just commenced Business as a Piano Forte Maker and Repairer, at his Premises, No.5, Liverpool-street, East, where he has on hand an assortment of Cottage Cabinet, &c. Piano Fortes, of Australian Materials and Manufacture ready for inspection, which he can satisfactorily recommend to those who may be disposed to encourage Colonial Workmanship.

"DIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 October 1845), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 October 1845), 1

NOTICE OF REMOVAL. THE Widow and Son of the late Mr. John Benham, Pianoforte-maker, in thanking their friends and the public for past favours, beg respectfully to acquaint them they have removed from their late residence in York-street, to the house in Bridge street, lately occupied by Mr. Barlow, where the business will for the future be carried on. Pianofortes carefully tuned and repaired.

"CLEARANCES", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 April 1849), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 April 1849), 1

MR. DANIEL BENHAM, Pianoforte Maker, late of Bridge-street, being about to leave Sydney, begs to return his sincere thanks to those ladies and gentlemen to whom he is indebted for support during his stay in the colony, and to inform them that he has made an arrangement with Mr. W. J. Johnson to take the above business ...



Professor of music; teacher of pianoforte, harmonium, and concertina; composer

Active Melbourne, VIC by April 1868

May 1872: The performer who presided at the harmonium on this occasion was not that great composer, Henry Benjamin, who, it appears, is the official harmonium-grinder to this lodge.

July 1872: Mr. Harry Rickards was sued in the County Court yesterday by Mr. Henry Benjamin, professor of music, for £100, alleged damages for breach of contract, and money due for work and labour done. The plaintiffs case was that he had been engaged to give music lessons to the defendant and his wife, and it was agreed while he was so engaged that he should set to waltz music some of the airs which Mr. Rickards had sung in Melbourne, the music to be written by the plaintiff, and the profits to be divided between him and the defendant. When he had finished the waltz music Rickards approved of it, but afterwards said he would have nothing to do with it because plaintiff had put on it that it was arranged, and composed by Henry Benjamin, and he (defendant) thought it should have only been stated that it was arranged and compiled by Benjamin. He considered he had suffered great loss through the conduct of the defendant, because the airs which he composed the music from were very popular at the time, and it would have sold well. The music lessons he had given he charged £4 4s. for. He denied that when he played the waltz music to Rickards, the latter told him to take it home and boil it, and said he had made an application to join the Musical Association of Victoria, who had offered to accept him. For the defence, Mr. Rickards stated that one evening at Gorton's Hotel, the plaintiff said he would like to compose a waltz on his melodies, and it was agreed he should do so, the music to be published, if approved of by defendant, at the joint expense of the two. The waltz, which the plaintiff wrote was merely four of his (defendant's) melodies strung together, and as they were all in waltz time there was no composition needed. When plaintiff played the waltz to him he pulled him off the stool, told him he never heard such rubbish, and he had better take it home and boil it. Benjamin afterwards said he would publish the waltz, but defendant told him not to do so, as the songs it was compiled from were copyright. Benjamin had never given him music lessons, but he had given Mrs. Rickards some, and there was an amount owing to him, which would have been paid if an account had been rendered. Mr. Harcourt Lee, a member of the Victorian Musical Association, described the waltz as rubbish, which would not sell in Melbourne. He also said the association would not admit the plaintiff into it, and that plaintiff took one quarter's lessons from Herr Schott, and then set up as a professor of music. His Honour Judge Forbes returned a verdict for plaintiff for £4 4s with 10s. costs.


[Advertisement], The Argus (24 April 1868), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (28 August 1869), 8

[News], The Argus (17 September 1869), 5

"POLICE ... FITZROY", The Argus (4 February 1870), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (30 December 1870), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 January 1871), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 February 1872), 8

"MUSIC IN MELBOURNE. May 15", The North Eastern Ensign (17 May 1872), 2

[News], The Argus (17 July 1872), 5

Musical works:

Wilt thou be mine (sung by J. A. Herman, the silvery tenor) (Melbourne, [? Author], [1869])

The knight's return (words by Chas. Bright; sung by T. Rainford) (Melbourne, [? Author], [1871/72])

Doing the block (music by Henry Benjamin; words by Marcus Clarke; sung by Harry Rickards) (Melbourne: Henry Benjamin, [1872])  

BENNELONG (Woollarawarre)

Singer, songmaker

Born Eora country, c.1764
Died Sydney, NSW, 3 January 1813 (NLA persistent identifier)


Bibliography and resources:

ABD Bennelong

Keith Vincent Smith, "Bennelong among his people", Aboriginal History 33 (2009)

Kate Fullagar, "Bennelong in Britain", Aboriginal History 33 (2009)


Singer, pianist, organist, concert presenter, composer

Born Wiltshire, England, c.1817
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 25 September 1839 (per Prince Regent, from London, 6 June)
Died Adelaide, 22 September 1854, aged 37 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


In October 1839, two recent arrivals "from Chichester", William Ewens and George Bennett assisted at Charles Platts's lecture on music. In February 1840, Platts and Bennett jointly advertised the first professional concert in Adelaide.

"FIRST PROFESSIONAL CONCERT IN ADELAIDE", South Australian Register (15 February 1840), 6

At celebrations of the anniversary of the colony in Gawler in 1851, Bennett himself concocted a song, now lost, a South Australian Anthem ("Let all our cares and griefs be drowned") reportedly "composed expressly for the occasion ... the intrinsic merit of the music exciting very general admiration".

"OLD COLONISTS' FESTIVAL", South Australian Register (28 March 1851), 2

"CONCERT AT GAWLEER TOWN", South Australian Register (26 April 1851), 2

Bennett's concert programs suggest he was a capable conductor and pianist in oratorio and middle-brow operatic numbers. Press reports, by the early 1850s, mainly register his voluntary musical contributions to convivial Masonic and civic gatherings, or indeed convivial gatherings of any sort. Visiting a butcher friend who had just returned from the gold-fields in 1852, Bennett was playing a polka on the piano for the assembled company in what was, actually, probably a sly-grog shop, when a fight broke out with his host. He lost two teeth-deemed a serious blow for a professor of singing-and was awarded damages when the matter ended up in court.

"LOCAL COURT. ADELAIDE. BENNETT V. FOREMAN", South Australian Register (19 August 1852), 3

Two years later, he was dead.


"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", South Australian Register (19 October 1839), 4

"FREEMASONRY (From S.A. Gazette)", The Cornwall Chronicle (31 January 1849), 340

Mr. George Bennett acted as Provisional Grand Organist. An appropriate anthem was chanted in very good style.

"DIED", South Australian Register (25 September 1854), 2

"THE LATE MR. BENNETT", South Australian Register (25 September 1854), 2

THE LATE MR. BENNETT. - An obituary notice in our present publication records the decease of Mr. George Bennett, professional musician. He was a native of Wiltshire, and received his musical education from his uncle, the late Mr. T. Bennett, for many years organist of Chichester Cathedral, of which the deceased was in his youth a chorister. Mr. Bennett possessed an unusual degree of natural talent, which, combined with the teaching of a first-rate master, constituted him a leader of ability. He arrived in this colony by the Prince Regent in 1839, since which period, to within a few months of his death, he was, almost exclusively, the leader of all concerts and musical societies, both public and private, in the colony, and for the last year or two he was organist at the Wesleyan Chapel, Pirie street. Deceased was in the 37th year of his age. He has left a widow and one child, a boy about eight years old. The funeral will take place at the Cemetery this morning, at 11 o'clock.

"FUNERAL OF MR. G. BENNETT", South Australian Register (26 September 1854), 2

FUNERAL OF MR. G. BENNETT. - The funeral which took place yesterday at 11 o'clock, was numerously attended by the brethren in Freemasonry of the deceased and other mourning friends, to the number of sixty or seventy persons. As the procession entered Trinity Church, the symphony to Knapp's funeral anthem was performed by Mr. Daniel, who presided at the seraphine, and the service was read with due solemnity by the Dean. Pope's Ode was sung at the Church by members of the Choral Society and some pupils of the vocal class of Mr. Daniel.


Amateur pianist, arranger

Active Launceston, TAS, 1858


The Nightingale varsoviana, honouring the heroine of the Crimea, Florence Nightingale, must have become popular at around the time an enterprising young architect, Horace Bennett, left England for Tasmania. In Hobart, Bennett's early interests included mining speculation, and public entertainment.

On arrival in May 1858, he advertised for "a Large room ... easily converted into a LARGE HALL for public entertainment", and in July announced the publication of some music to fill it:

Just Published,-Price 2s. 6d. THE NIGHTINGALE VARSOVIANA being the original music of this new and favourite dance, arranged for the piano forte by Horace Bennett. May be had of the principal music sellers of this city.

Bennett's place of entertainment, the Polytechnic Bazaar, which eventually opened in 1862 soon ran into trouble with the local authorities for failing to be sufficiently "select" in its clientele. Bennett contributed designs towards the roof of the Launceston Town Hall in 1864. Meanwhile, it also appears he contracted a bigamous marriage in Launceston in November 1858.


[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Daily Mercury (27 May 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Daily Mercury (10 July 1858), 6

"MARRIAGES", Launceston Examiner (11 November 1858), 2

"MUNICIPAL COUNCIL", The Mercury (17 June 1862), 3

"POLYTECHNIC BAZAAR, HOBART TOWN", Launceston Examiner (19 June 1862), 5

"INSOLVENCY COURT", Launceston Examiner (20 September 1862), 2

"MUNICIPAL COUNCIL", The Cornwall Chronicle (6 January 1864), 5

"TOWN HALL ROOF", Launceston Examiner (11 May 1867), 3

"A WILL CASE", The Mercury (9 December 1926), 3


Choral singer, choir member (St. James's Church, Sydney), convict

Active Sydney, NSW, 1822-25


Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825; correspondence from Hill, Richard (Revd) to Hill, Samuel (per Hadlow) 

1822 Jan 19; Re request for leave for choir members (Reel 6053; 4/1756 p.67)

1822 Feb 20; Re James Bennett joining choir of church (Reel 6054; 4/1759 p.165)

1824 Dec 15; Re the services of James Bennett no longer being required (Reel 6014; 4/3513 p.88)

"POLICE OFFICE", The Australian (13 January 1825), 2 

James Bennett, a painter residing in George-street, professing to be a lover of sweet sounds, was deprived of his ticket of leave, for taking certain liberties with the choral department of St. James's Church, in a letter to the Editor of the Sydney Gazette, some few weeks since.

[Editorial], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 January 1825), 2 

In our contemporary of last week we were somewhat surprised on meeting with the following paragraph, in his Police report: - "James Bennett, a painter residing in George street, professing to be a lover of sweet sounds, was deprived of his ticket of leave, for taking certain liberties, with the choral department of St. James's Church, in a letter to the Editor of the Sydney Gazette, some few weeks since." Were this report true, and had the Magistrates deprived the man of his liberty upon the only account stated as above, we have no hesitation in averring, that Bennett was unjustly dealt with; inasmuch as neither that individual, nor any other prisoner of the crown, was the author of the letter that appeared in our columns "some few weeks since," which was subscribed, "A Lover of sweet Sounds." But our contemporary, with a facility that reflects credit to his scholarship, takes the gentlemanly advantage, at the moment afforded, of trying to depreciate our Journal, at the expence of any poor fellow that may happen to come before the new Censorship of the Press, so recently established, but which will bring more odium upon our contemporary than he perhaps is aware of, unless such a practice is at once abandoned. The man, Bennett, we have learnt, held a ticket of leave at the instance of the Rev. Mr. Hill, so long as he continued a member of "the choral department of St. James's Church;" but, as he thought proper to relinquish the only condition upon which liberty was suspended, of course his ticket of leave was cancelled; - this is nearer the fact. Not that Bennett ever wrote a letter to the Editor of the Sydney Gazette; or that the Editor of the Sydney Gazette is in the habit of receiving correspondencies from any other writers but Gentlemen, and those generally scholars!


Organist, pianist

Active Wangaratta, VIC, 1863-64; Chiltern, 1864-69


"WANGARATTA", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (6 June 1863), 2

... I must, before concluding, congratulate the committee of the Athenaeum on the happy hit they made last evening by the introduction of instrumental music. Mr Bennett, before and after the lecture, discoursed most eloquent music, his rendering of selections from "La Sonnambula," and other favorite oparas, were given in a truly professional style, and gave great satisfaction to all present. The Chairman announced that the next lecture in connection with the institution would be delivered by Mr Brooke Smith.

"THE ORGANIST OF TRINITY CHURCH AND THE LADY", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (11 June 1863), 4

To the Editor of the Ovens and Murray Advertiser. DEAR SIR, - A correspondent in the Columns of your contemporary, the Wangaratta Dispatch, has imputed to me the authorship of a letter which appeared in the 'Standard' of Wednesday last, thereby accusing me of having adopted this means of obtaining the situation of organist in 'Trinity Church. I am sure it needs no line from me to t ell the public of Wangaratta what they already know so well, namely, that there's a harmonium in the church, but, strange to say, no choir nor yet instrumental music. Why it is so I know not. The 'lady' (for that is the name my accuser subscribes) says that he thought at first, I was going to give my services gratis. How exceedingly verdant he must have been !! From the very first I expressed my determination to decline the duties of organist unless I was remunerated, and I can inform him (the lady) that without at all taking into consideration the time and trouble spent in conducting the church choral matters at rehearsals, and on Sundays, the talent has a right to be paid for as well. I repudiate his accusation with scorn, and would caution him against writing slander he has done in this instance, and I can. assure him that nothing, (even the belter of the name which he profanes by assuming), shall preserve him from castigation should he deserve it. Yours sincerely, J. BENNETT. Wangaratta, June 6th, 1863.

"WANGARATTA", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (30 June 1863), 2

1863-06-30: The Atheneum Committee are endeavoring to augment their Building Fund, and, the proceeds of Mr. Brooke Smith's lecture are to be devoted to that object. We have a gentleman amongst us who has frequently given musical lectures, or rather, I ought to say, literary and musical entertainments, in aid of kindred institutions to the Atheneum, and I think the Committee would do well to solicit the assistance of Mr. Bennett (to whom I refer), as there is no doubt if he should consent to lecture, there would be a bumper house. At length, I observe with pleasure that a vigorous effort has been made to remodel the choir in Trinity Church. Several ladies and gentlemen of acknowledged voca talent have consented to assist. The services of Mr. Bennett have also been secured and as he has been accustomed to officiate as organist and conductor in larger Churches than ours, there is every prospect of the Church music being carried out properly. It is certainly a matter upon which I can congratulate the congregation, as it was decidedly a reproach to have a harmonium lying untouched during divine service.

"WANGARATTA", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (21 January 1864), 4

"CHILTERN", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (23 September 1865), 3 

The amateur concert in aid of the funds of the Ovens District Hospital and Benevolent Asylum, came off in Peel's Theatre, on Wednesday night last. The audience was the largest that has assembled in Chiltern since the palmy days of the lower Indigo. The vocalists acquitted themselves very well, and were loudly encored. The first appearance of the serenaders was hailed with loud and prolonged cheers. Their portion of! the entertainment gave general satisfaction, especially the badinage carried on by "Bones" and "Tambo." The musical department consisted of Messrs Bennett, Barlow, and Weinberg, whose musical capabilities need no comment, as the names of these gentlemen are a sufficient guarantee to the public that the music was first-class. The gross proceeds of the house must have been nearly £40.

"CORRESPONDENCE", The Church of England Messenger for the Diocese of Melbourne (9 September 1869), 9 


Musician, choirmaster, organist

Born Lewannick, Cornwall, 20 May 1838
Active Adelaide, SA, by 1861
Died Woodville, SA, 14 December 1890, aged 52 years


Teacher of piano

Born North Adelaide, SA, 6 August 1849
Died Gawler, SA, 22 May 1939, aged 89

BENNETT, Ernest Mathew

Violinist, music teacher (pupil of Herr Heinicke)

Born SA, 1871 (son of the above)

1861-07-03: The Choral Society, of which there were present 14 ladies and about 20 gentlemen vocalists under the able leadership of Mr. G. Tilley, sang in the course of the evening no less than 11 pieces, consisting of selections from the compositions of Mozart, Handel, Haydn, Matthews, and Kent, and, considering the short time the Society has been formed, in a manner highly creditable. Mr. John Bennett officiated as organist ... The Hallelujah Chorus was sung as a finale to the entertainment.

1877-12-20: Service of Song at Alberton. A pleasing service of song, entitled 'Elijah,' in aid of the manse fund, was given at the Alberton Baptist Church before a moderate gathering on Wednesday night, December 19. An efficient choir of 12 voices, from various denominations in the neighbourhood, under the leadership of Mr. John Bennett, sang in excellent style, while Mr. J. W. Channon officiated as organist.

1890-12-15 obituary: The Late Mr. Bennett. - We regret to notice the announcement of the death, at the age of fifty-two years, of Mr. John Bennett, of Woodville, and a well-known and highly esteemed businessman of Port Adelaide. For many years he has carried on a shipsmith's establishment, and it is from fifteen to twenty years since he was first elected a member of the Town Council, in which he sat for several terms. He always took an intelligent interest in local matters, and was associated with different charitable and other movements. Of the Victoria Lodge, M.U., he was a Past Grand. As a musician his services were in frequent request, both as choirmaster and organist. He married a daughter of Mr. T. J. Mitchell, of Woodville, and a sister of Dr. Mitchell, now of Ballarat, and has left her a widow with a family. The funeral takes place at the Woodville Cemetery this afternoon.

1891-01-24: MUSIC MRS. JOHN BENNETT. WOODVTLLE. From 2nd February will receive Advanced and Elementary PUPILS in PIANOFORTE PLAYING at SEMAPHORE and Neighbourhood, and is open to Engagement with Schools. A FRENCH CLASS will be formed if sufficient inducement offers. MR. E. M. BENNETT (an Advanced Pupil of Herr Heinicke) is prepared to give Instruction in VIOLIN PLAYING.


"PORT ADELAIDE SACRED CHORAL SOCIETY", South Australian Register (3 July 1861), 3

"NORWOOD WESLEYAN CHAPEL ANNIVERSARY", Adelaide Observer (14 October 1865), 1 Supplement

"SERVICE OF SONG AT ALBERTON", South Australian Register (20 December 1877), 5

"THE LATE MR. BENNETT", South Australian Register (15 December 1890), 4

"DEATHS", South Australian Register (15 December 1890), 4

[Advertisement], Petersburg Times (7 January 1910), 1 

Bibliography and resources:

Family history by Graeme Moad 

BENNETT, Rosa (Miss Rosa E. BENNETT; Mrs. William WASTELL; Rosa E. WASTELL)

Vocalist, pianist, composer

Active Adelaide, SA, by 1885
Died North Sydney, NSW, 18 July 1923


"BOHEMIAN CLUB SOCIAL", Evening Journal (25 June 1885), 2

... During the evening Miss Rosa E. Bennett played the "Evening Shadows" waltz (which has recently been composed and published by her) with great taste ...

"NEW MUSIC", Evening Journal (30 June 1885), 3 

"NEW MUSIC", The Advertiser (21 January 1905), 10 

"OBITUARY", The Advertiser (22 July 1927), 15 

Mrs. Wastell, a well-known composer and musician, whose death occurred in Sydney on Monday, had a large circle of friends in Adelaide. Her maiden name was Bennett, and she was born in New South Wales. She came to South Australia in 1883, and later married Mr. William Wastell, who for many years was in business in King William-street as a chemist. Mrs. Wastell was long connected with charities and the North Adelaide Baptist Church, and her work on their behalf gained her many friends. She was a talented musician and was a successful composer of ballads and songs, among her finest works being "Evening Shadows," a song which was awarded the first prize in an open competition inaugurated by Sir William Robinson (then Governor of the State). Mrs. Wastell was also awarded first prize in the Unley competitions several years ago for a beautiful song, entitled "Birds," which was sung by Mrs. J. B. Gard. Probably her best effort was "Memory," which had a large sale. She composed the words of her songs. Mrs. Wastell returned to Sydney five years ago.

Musical works:

Evening shadows, waltz composed by Rosa E. Bennett, dedicated by kind permission to his excellency Sir Wm. C. F. Robinson, K.C.M.G., governor of South Australia (DIGITISED)


Violoncello pupil (of Henry Witton)

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1862


[Advertisement], The Courier [Brisbane] (24 October 1862), 1

W. R. BENNETT (Violoncello), Barnard-st. [pupil of Henry James Witton]

BENSON, Mrs. L. C.

Organist, vocalist

Born Hobart, TAS, 1 March 1860


"70 YEARS A MUSICIAN. Mrs. L. C. Benson's 80th Birthday", The Mercury (1 March 1940), 5

BENT, Andrew

Musical album bookbinder, printer, publisher

Born London, 1790
Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 2 February 1812 (convict per Guildford and Ruby)
Died Sydney, NSW, 16 August 1851


"MUSIC. Mr. BENT having received a Quantity of very handsome Marble Paper by the late arrival, of different Patterns, begs to inform the Ladies and Gentlemen of Hobart Town and its Vicinity, who may wish to have Music bound, of the circumstance. Mr. BENT feels assured, that the elegance of his Patterns, and the lowness of his Charges, not to mention the superior Workmen he employs, will ensure him the commands of the Lovers of Sweet Sounds." Bent was also a Hobart newspaper proprietor.


[Government expenses], Hobart Town Gazette (4 March 1826), 1s

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (18 January 1828), 2

Bibliography and resources:

E. R. Pretyman, Bent, Andrew (1790-1851), Australian dictionary of biography 1 (1966)



Active Melbourne, VIC, and Sydney, NSW, 1850s


Mrs. Bently first appeared in Melbourne in December 1851 as a solo pianist and probably also as accompanist for the soprano Mrs. Testar. She accompanied Harriet Fiddes and Francesca Allen in concerts in Sydney and Maitland district in 1853. Perhaps she was the same Mrs. Bentley teaching music and dancing at Maitland in 1859.


"THE CONCERT", The Argus (11 December 1851),

"MRS. FIDDES' CONCERT", The Maitland Mercury (28 May 1853), 2

"MRS. FIDDES' CONCERT", The Maitland Mercury (1 June 1853), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 July 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (26 May 1859), 1

BENTLEY, Julia (MUNK; Mrs. Thomas Charles BENTLEY)

Pianist, professor of music

Born ? Exeter, England, c.1837
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1860
Active by January 1861
Died "Warrawillah", Hunter's Hill, NSW, 27 February 1923


Julia Bentley, formerly Julia Munk of Exeter, arrived in Sydney with her husband Thomas Charles Bentley (married 1857) in 1860. A "pupil of Thalberg and Miss [Arabella] Goddard", she advertised as a piano teacher in Sydney in January 1861. She was billed to appear for Douglas Callen and the Sydney Philharmonic Society on 30 April, playing Dohler's Fantasia on Vivi tu, and Madame Oury's Fantasia on La Traviata, however did not actually appear for the Society until 14 May, when the Heraldand Empire reviewed her favourably. She was billed to appear again for the society on 27 May 1862 playing Beethoven's Pathetique Sonata, however, due to a disturbance on the night of the concert, the performance did not take place. The Society publicly apologised to her in an advertisement on 31 May. However, in a letter in the press on 4 June, her husband gave details of a malicious campaign of correspondence waged first against her, and then also against her supporter Edward Boulanger, that escalated to serious assault. Cesare Cutolo was among those accused of responsibility, and Bentley herself was accused of having concocted the whole affair. Even though the case reached the Legislative Assembly, it was never satisfactorily solved. However, Julia Bentley's public career was effectively over.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 January 1861), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 April 1861), 1

£100 (ONE HUNDRED POUNDS) REWARD. The above reward will be paid to any person who will (by letter or otherwise) give such information as will lead to the conviction of the author of numerous anonymous letters addressed from time to time, during the last twelve months, to the heads of certain influential families in Sydney, having for their object the circulation of false and malicious charges against a Lady Professor, resident in the city, and also of certain anonymous communications recently written with the same object, and directed against an Eminent Artist of the musical profession lately returned to the colony. It is known that the letters alluded to have been written by an amanuensis, and information given by that person will entitle him to the reward. Apply to the parties concerned; or to Messrs. JOHNSON and JOHNSON, solicitors, Pitt-street

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 May 1861), 1

"SYDNEY PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 May 1861), 5

"MUSIC AND THE DRAMA", Empire (21 May 1861), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 April 1862), 1

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 May 1862), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 May 1862), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (31 May 1862), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 June 1862), 8

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 June 1862), 5

[Letter] "To the Editor", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 October 1862), 2 

"LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY. THE BENTLEY CASE", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 July 1863), 3

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 September 1868), 1

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 March 1923), 14 

"OUR STRANGE PAST: WHO SCARED MRS. BENTLY", The Mail (28 March 1953), 4s

BENVENUTI, Antonio Giovanni

Violinist, violin player, composer

Born Padua, Italy, c.1820
Arrived Brisbane, QLD, 19 September 1871 (per Polonaise, from London 10 June)
Died Brisbane, QLD, 21 April 1896

BENVENUTI, Italo Angelo

Flautist, oboist

Born 1861
Died Brisbane, QLD, 18 January 1932

BENVENUTI, Luigi Antonio

Violinist, double bass player

Born 1859
Died 1934

BENVENUTI, Margaret Jane (Peggy, Mrs L. A. BENVENUTI)

Contralto vocalist

Died Taringa, QLD, 15 September 1932


BENVENUTI, Victor Giuseppi

Violinist, conductor

Born 1864
Died Brisbane, QLD, April 1923


BENVENUTI, Leo Antonio

Violinist, double-bass player

Born 1900
Died 1975



Benvenuti family, Brisbane, c.1890s

Image: Victorio Guiseppi, Luigi Antonio, Italo Angelo and Antonio Giovanni Benvenuti, c.1890s

1871-09-29: SIGNOR A. BENVENUTI, Professor of Violin, Teacher of the Guitar, and French and Italian languages. Terms moderate. Address Cottage next Roman Catholic School, Boundary-street.

1871-10-07: A musical composition, entitled "Il Vesuvia," by Professor Benvenuti, who is a late arrival in Brisbane, and evidently a musician of great talent, excited much admiration and was loudly applauded.

1880-02-19: It is needless, to say Signor Benvenuti took the house by storm with his violin solo, being a fantasia, arranged by himself from "Beatrice di Tenda."

1896-04-22: THE LATE SIGNOR BENVENUTI. A very old and well-known resident of Brisbane, Signor Antonio Benvenuti, died early yesterday morning. Although, owing to his age, the deceased has but rarely of late appeared before the public, he was for twenty years one of the most prominent figures among Brisbane professional musicians. He arrived with his family in this colony from London, by the ship Polonaise in 1871. Soon after arrival he joined the then flourishing stock company at the old Theatre Royal, where he was leader of the orchestra for some years. Since that time, until his retirement five years ago, he has been constantly before the public either at the theatre, on the concert platform, or in the ballroom. One of the very earliest of musical pioneers here, he was one of the first to systematise musical performances, professional musicians being then few and far between. He leaves three sons, also skilful musicians, who have long been favourably known in connection with concert and theatrical music, one resident in Sydney and the other two in Brisbane.

1932-01-21: Mr. I. A. Benvenuti. ONE of the few remaining Brisbane musicians of the 'eighties and 'nineties passed away on Monday in the person of Mr. Italo Angelo Benvenuti. He was one of three brothers, sons of Mr. Antonio Benvenuti, an Italian colonist who settled in Brisbane and followed the profession of a musician. His violin playing, so far superior to anything that had come to the city before, soon won him a leading place, and with his three sons he became well known in musical circles. "Benvenutis Band" was an established feature of Brisbane, and supplied music for the principal theatrical companies visiting here. Mr. Italo Benvenuti's favourite instrument was the flute, although he frequently played the oboe.

1934-11-20: Obituary. Mr. L. A. Benvenuti. The death has occurred in Brisbane of Mr. Luigi Antonio Benvenuti, for many years one of the finest bass players in Australia, and one of a family of musicians known throughout the Commonwealth. Mr. Benvenuti, who was 76, retired about eight years ago but retained to the last his active interest in all matters associated with music and musicians. He died after a brief illness. He was one of three brothers who came with their parents to Australia from London about 65 years ago. Their father, who had gone from Italy to England to join the Covent Garden Orchestra, emigrated to Australia, and went first to Sydney and Melbourne. He came to Queensland, and for years the family appeared as Benvenuti 's Orchestra. Luigi, who was only seven when he reached Australia, quickly became noted as a violinist and string bass player. He travelled with grand opera and comic opera companies. His late home at Princess Street, Taringa, contains one of the best music libraries in the Commonwealth. Mrs. Benvenuti died about two years ago. They are survived by two sons: Mr. V. Benvenuti and Mr. Leo Benvenuti, the latter being a member of the Regent Theatre Orchestra, and a former leader of the Winter Garden and Tivoli orchestras. Mrs. H. Cusack, of Cooyar, is a daughter.


[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (29 September 1871), 1

"HIBERNIAN SOCIETY", The Queenslander (7 October 1871), 3

[News], The Brisbane Courier (19 February 1880), 3

"THE LATE SIGNOR BENVENUTI", The Brisbane Courier (22 April 1896), 5

"Obituary", The Courier-Mail (20 November 1934), 15

"Mr. I. A. Benvenuti", The Queenslander (21 January 1932), 9

"Mrs. Margaret Jane Benvenuti", The Brisbane Courier (21 September 1932), 13

"To play before Royalty. Musician follows family tradition", The Courier-Mail (22 January 1954), 6 

Bibliography and resources:

Benvenuti collection, NLA

"Antonio Giovanni BENVENUTI", The Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame and Outback Heritage Centre

BERG, Charles (Carl Reinhold BERG; Charles BERG; Herr BERG)

Trombonist, tuba basso player, mining speculator

Born ? Sweden, 1825/26

Active Melbourne, VIC, from 1854
Died Sandringham, VIC, 8 May 1890, aged 64


In October 1854 Berg and Lundberg, a clarinettist, both "from the King's Theatre Stockholm" appeared with Sidney Nelson and family at the Queen's Theatre. They appeared again there a few days later, along with John Winterbottom, to play for Catherine Hayes and Lewis Lavenu, when it was reported:

An instrumental duet, for clarionet and valve trombone, given by Herrn Berg and Lundberg, two Swedish musicians, was much applauded, although it appeared somewhat slow amongst the more exciting performances of the evening.

He is surely the "Mr. Berry" the Argus (mis-)reported as playing at the Theatre Royal in July 1855. Berg also played in Lyster's Opera Orchestra from 1861, and in the Melbourne Popular Concerts in the 1880s.

He is probably the "Charles Berg, a musician, living at Sandridge" who was victim of a petty theft in Melbourne in 1862.


[Advertisement], The Argus (21 October 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (26 October 1854), 8

"QUEEN'S THEATRE - MISS CATHERINE HAYES", The Argus (30 October 1854), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (11 November 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (9 July 1855), 8

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (19 July 1855), 5

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (30 July 1855), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 September 1859), 8

[News], The Argus (22 April 1861), 4

"CHARGE OF STEALING FROM THE PERSON", The Argus (1 March 1864), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 April 1862), 8

The Victoria Post Office directory (1866), 13

[News], The Argus (30 October 1867), 5

[News], The Argus (31 January 1870), 4

"MELBOURNE POPULAR CONCERTS", The Argus (15 June 1882), 9

[Advertisement], Bairnsdale Advertiser (4 November 1884), 3

"Deaths", The Argus (9 May 1890), 1


... It is with deep regret that we have to announce the demise of Mr. C. R. Berg, who was apparently in good health a few days ago, but who died suddenly yesterday morning. Mr. Berg has been a member of the orchestra (tuba) since its formation, and also took part in the Exhibition concerts. He was well advanced in years, and was well known and much respected as a musician, and also in private life, by all who were in any way associated with him.

"Deaths", The Argus (9 May 1890), 1

"Deaths", The Argus (3 October 1891), 1

"DEATHS", The Argus (19 June 1903), 1


Guitar pupil (of Henry Witton)

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1862


[Advertisement], The Courier [Brisbane] (24 October 1862), 1

H. BERINGAR (Guitar), Fitzroy-st., Collingwood. [pupil of Henry James Witton]


Cornet player, bandsman

Active Adelaide, by 1872
Died Adelaide, February 1897



Died Broken Hill, November 1921


"FAREWELL TO MR. J. S. J. BERMINGHAM", The Advertiser (4 February 1897), 6

"THE LATE MR. J. J. BIRMINGHAM RECORD OF THE CITY BAND", Barrier Miner (23 November 1921), 3

BERNIER, Pierre-François

Astronomer (on the Géographe), Indigenous music and culture recorder

Born La Rochelle, Charente Maritime, France, 19 November 1779
Active Australia, 1801-03
Died at sea off coast of Timor, 5/6 June 1803 (on board the Géographe)

See main entries on Bernier and Lesueurs's Indigenous song transcriptions: 

Bernier (by Ingres, c.1800)

Image: Portrait by Ingres (1800)çois_Bernier#/media/File:Bernier-Ingres-1800.jpg

Indigenous songs (from Lesueur and Petit 1824): Musique des sauvages de la Nouvelle-Galles du Sud (Lesueur et Bernier notaverunt)


1802 Bernier Air


Fornasiero and West-Sooby 2015, 24-25 reproduce a handwritten notation (? Bernier's 1802 original, or a later copy from it) of the "Air des Naturels de la N[ouve]lle Hollande au Port Jackson" (pictured above) and a much later handwritten copy text for the engraving of the music plate of the Péron and Freycinet Atlas of 1824 = Lesueur and Petit 1824 (Lesueur Collection, Muséum de l'Histoire Naturelle, Le Harve, nos. 16057R , 16059-1)


"Notice sur l'astronome Bernier", Connaissance des temps pour l'an XV (1804), 446-52

Jêrome Lalande, "Notice sur l'astronome Bernier", Magasin encyclopédique, ou Journal des sciences, des lettres et des arts (1804), 256-59

Bibliography and resources:

Jacques Vialle, "Le destin tragique de Pierre-Francois Bernier", Australian journal of French studies41/2 (2004), 165-70;dn=200410133;res=IELAPA

BERRY, Zachariah

Bandsman, Band of the 3rd Regiment (Buffs)

Born Horsham, Sussex, England, 1788
Active NSW, 1823-27
Died ? 1839 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


London, National Archives, PRO, WO12/2118: 3rd Regiment of Foot (Buffs) payrolls 1824-26; microfilm copy at SL-NSW: PRO Reel 3695

Bibliogarphy and resources: 


Band of the 3rd Regiment


Pianist, organist, composer, "blind musician"

Born Brunswick, Germany c.1864
Arrived Adelaide, 25 July 1881 (per Catania, from Hamburg 18 May)


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (26 July 1881), 4

"A BLIND MUSICIAN", South Australian Register (10 August 1881), 5

"ORIGINAL MUSIC. THE NEW YEAR-A CANTATA", South Australian Register (20 February 1895), 3

"BLIND PIANO TUNERS", The Register (13 April 1922), 6

"FINGERS THAT SEE", The Mail (3 September 1927), 1


Musical works:

The wind in the trees (descriptive song; words by Emma E. Holden; music by Hans Bertram)

The empire's own (words by Noel Webb; music by Hans Bertram)

BEST, Edwin

Composer, amateur musician

Active Adelaide, SA, by ? 1877
Died Adelaide, SA, 13 June 1936, aged 71 years

1885: We have received a copy of the Estienne Vocal Waltz, which we referred to soma time ago as the production of an Adelaidean, Mr. Edwin Best. The composition is a very creditable one, with better pretence to variety, life, and color than many pieces of the valse character. It has a bold introduction of runs and chords in E major, and a chromatic lead into the vocal air in G major, "Love true as thine thine." The words by the way might have been improved upon ...

1888: Amongst the number of scores sent in for the Melbourne Exhibition Cantata was one by Mr. Edwin Best, of Adelaide, an amateur who has made music a study for several years past, and whose work bears testimony of good reading, intelligent conception, and some practical acquaintance with the art. The Cantata opens with an overture in four movements, which leads to a chorus in five parts, "Welcome to visitors," followed by a recit. and aria for soprano with obligato for violoncello and flute; than a cavatina, "O'er leagues," for the contralto, and "Solitude" again as an intermezzo in E flat major ... [detailed description continues]

1890: THE VICTORIAN ORCHESTRA. TO THE EDITOR. Sir - The above body has given at least one good concert before leaving the colony, but in my humble opinion it is to be regretted that Beethoven appeared to a disadvantage by the preponderance of Wagner numbers. If three works by each master had been given it would have been nearer the mark. My reason for writing this is to show that Wagner cannot be understood unless his aim is comprehended, for Wagner's music was founded on Beethoven's principles. It was not until Wagner had heard one of Beethoven's symphonies that he finally adopted musical composition. Both the masters' styles are romantic, and if it be asked what is their difference it should he stated that Beethoven was inspired by nature, but Wagner drew his ideas from the supernatural world, and employed them in the musical drama. It is here where Wagner's genius shines. Beethoven had only music without scenery and effects to show his genius. In music alone, independent of poetry and painting, Beethoven is a genius, because he invented, whereas Wagner is a talent, because be adopted another's principles. Those who think that the phrase "the music of the future" means anything are mistaken, because Wagner did not intend to give anything new in sound, but only to show what could be done by the union of music (Beethoven's principles) and the mythical drama. I am, Sir, &c, PASSING NOTE (Edwin Best). September 15.


"News of the Week", South Australian Chronicle and Weekly Mail (2 June 1877), 6

"NEW MUSIC", South Australian Register (9 December 1885), 4

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (10 December 1885), 1

[News], The South Australian Advertiser (12 December 1885), 4

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (16 December 1885), 1

[News], The South Australian Advertiser (9 June 1888), 5

"DR. MACKAY AND HENRY RUSSELL. TO THE EDITOR", The South Australian Advertiser (19 December 1888), 7

"THE VICTORIAN ORCHESTRA. TO THE EDITOR", South Australian Register (16 September 1890), 7

"DEATHS", The Advertiser (15 June 1936), 16

Musical works:

Estienne vocal waltz (written and composed by Edwin Best) (Adelaide: Cawthorne & Co., [1885])

BETTERIDGE, Mr. (? Henry)

Double-bass (contra-basso) player, amateur musician, member of Adelaide Choral Society (? attorney)

Active Adelaide, by 1854
? Departed SA, 1874
? Died WA, 1909


[Advertisement], The South Australian (11 October 1854), 1

"CHORAL SOCIETY", South Australian Register (13 January 1857), 3

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (12 May 1859), 1

"THE NORWOOD PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The South Australian Advertiser (20 July 1861), 2

? "LEGAL", South Australian Register (29 August 1874), 5

? "FUNERALS", The West Australian (17 August 1909), 1


Bandsman, band of the 63rd Regiment

Died Hobart Town, VDL, 6 June 1831

See also Band of the 63rd regiment


[News], Colonial Times (8 June 1831), 3 

John Beveridge, belonging to the band of the 63rd Regiment, died suddenly on Monday last, at Mr. P. Dudgeon's, the Derwent Brewery; he had, during the day, appeared rather depressed in spirits, owing to his having received intelligence of the death of a relative, but otherwise, as usual; the deceased was particularly subject to severe fits of cramp. A Coroner's Inquest was held on the body, on the following day, when a Verdict of - "Died in a fit of Apoplexy" was returned.

BEVERLEY, Florence (Miss Florence CALZADO)

Contralto vocalist, burlesque comedian

Active Victoria, by 1863; Sydney, until 1873

1865: We learn from Bell's Life in Victoria that Mr. and Mrs. R. Smythe (late Miss Amelia Bailey), Mons. Poussard, and Miss Florence Beverley, after a successful tour through India and Chins, will shortly return to Melbourne.

1867: We observe from the Cape papers to hand by the mail that the Poussard-Bailey party, who were driven from Mauritius by the prevalence of the fever there, were performing with great success in Cape Town, drawing crowded houses nightly. The Cape Argus remarks respecting them: "M. Poussard is a violinist and pianist of first-class ability, while Miss Amelia Bailey is most enthusiastically received. The comic songs, in character, by Miss Calzado take immensely, and night after night she is vociferously encored."


"NEWS AND NOTES", The Star (10 January 1863), 2

[Advertisement], Empire (30 September 1863), 1

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (27 February 1864), 3

[News], The Argus (9 June 1864), 5

[News], The Argus (17 June 1864), 5

"MUSICAL", South Australian Register (25 May 1865), 2

"DRAMATIC AND MUSICAL", South Australian Register (3 April 1866), 2

[News], The Argus (17 June 1867), 4

[News], The Argus (31 August 1869), 5

"ARTISTES AND THEIR WANDERINGS. II", The Mercury (13 September 1869), 3

"POPULAR CONCERTS AT ST. GEORGE'S HALL", The Argus (27 January 1870), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 February 1873), 10

Bibliography and resources:

BEYER, Augustus

Organist, ? violinist   

Arrived Adelaide, SA, 31 March 1848 (per Pauline, from Bremen)
Died Cox's Creek, SA, 23 November 1858, in his 53rd year


Music teacher

March 1848: Passengers - Augustus Beyer, organist; Mrs. Beyer and five children

July 1848: The daughter of a German teacher, seventeen years of age, seeks an engagement in a respectable family for teaching young children. Besides the usual objects of instruction, she can give lessons in the French language, in drawing, and in the rudiments of music. Apply to A. BEYER, Gawler-place.

1856: MISKA HAUSER. - We understand this inimitable artist is likely to carry away from Adelaide a prize which he himself considers would alone have amply recompensed his visit to South Australia. It came to his knowledge that Mr. Beyer, of Freeman-street, had an old violin to which its former owner, the late Mr. [Spencer Wellington] Wallace, a musician of great colonial celebrity, attached immense value. Mr. Beyer, however, had formed a more moderate estimate of its worth, and actually sold it for £10 a few days before Miska Hauser heard of it. The purchaser of the violin from Mr. Beyer was found, and, as he consented for a trifling advance on his outlay to part with the instrument, the Hungarian master found himself possessed of a veritable chef d'oeuvre of Stravidare, of Cremona [sic]. The tone of this instrument under the magic touch of Miska Hauser is, we understand, so surpassingly exquisite that its enthusiastic owner calculates upon achieving greater triumphs than ever in his divine art through its agency. 


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian (4 April 1848), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (12 July 1848), 1

"MISKA HAUSER", South Australian Register (18 January 1856), 3

"DIED", The South Australian Advertiser (29 November 1858), 2

"DEATHS", South Australian Register (16 August 1888), 4

See also:

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian (7 November 1848), 2

Lists "1 organist", anonymous, among the German emigrants on board the Victoria, from Hamburg.

BEYER, Franz

Violinist (Tanunda School Band)

Active Tanunda, SA, 1853


"TANUNDA SCHOOL EXAMINATION", South Australian Register (29 March 1853), 2

BIAL, Charles (Carl, Karl)

Pianist, accompanist, musical director, composer, arranger

Born ? Germany, 1833
Active Melbourne, 1854-59; Adelaide 1855-56
Died ? Germany, 1892


Herr C. Bial was "Conductor and Accompaniest" at Astley's Amphitheatre in Melbourne for Octavia Hamilton's benefit in October 1854. He was accompanist for Miska Hauser in June 1855, also travelling back to Adelaide with Hauser. Back in Melbourne by May 1856 advertised then that he would henceforth "devote his time to the Musical Instruction of advanced pupils on the Piano". He appeared in concert with Edward Boulanger in July 1859 playing piano duet arrangements of Beethoven symphonies and as his solo a Thalberg fantasia. "Being about to quit the colony for Europe", Bial gave a farewell concert in December 1859. After our Bial's departure, in Sydney in October 1860, the song setting When we two parted by "Herr Karl Bial" was sung by Miss G. McCarthy at Madame Jaffa's concert. Unexpectedly, it seems likely that Charles Bial was indeed none other than the German pianist, composer and arranger Carl Bial (1833-92), into whose later care the young Melbourne pianist John Kruse was placed in Berlin in 1878.

Back in Berlin in 1863, he had a piano work, Souvenire de Caire, Polka Brillante pour piano, published in Berlin by Peters, under the name "Charles Bial" (compare Cutolo's Remembrances of the Pyramids; Bial was once also compared with Cutolo, in a letter to the Adelaide press in December 1858).

"Herr Bial (Berlin Conservatoire)" and "E. Boulanger (Paris Conservatoire)", the latter by then very late, were listed as former teachers of a Mr. C. W. Russell, from the "Royal Conservatoire of Music, Stuttgart", when he set up his teaching practice in St. Kilda in July the same year, 1878.

Rodolphe Bial was his brother.


[Advertisement], The Argus (11 October 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 November 1854), 8

"MISKA HAUSER", The Argus (1 June 1855), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (21 June 1855), 8

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (24 June 1858), 1

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (28 June 1858), 2

"MISKA HAUSER'S CONCERT AT THE PORT", South Australian Register (22 December 1855), 2

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 February 1856), 8

"MISS EMILIE SMITH'S CONCERT", The Argus (26 February 1856), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (12 May 1856), 3

"SIGNOR CUTOLO. TO THE EDITOR", South Australian Register (2 December 1858), 3

[News], The Argus (13 July 1859), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 December 1859), 8

[Advertisement], Empire (29 September 1860), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 July 1878), 8

"THE KRUSE FUND", The Argus (13 September 1878), 3

Musical works:

Fackeltanz aus der Oper Der Landfriede von Ignaz Brüll; arr. von C. Bial.

BIAL, Rodolphe (Rudolf)

Violinist, pianist, composer

Born Habelschwerdt, Silesia, 26 August 1834
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by July 1857
Died New York, 13 November 1881



"Mr. Rodolphe Bial, Violinist, late Musical Director at Berlin, having just arrived from Germany" announced a concert at Melbourne's Mechanics' Institution on 6 August 1857, assisted by his brother Charles Bial, Charles's piano pupil Miss Emilie Smith, and Julius Siede. At Ballarat's Charlie Napier in October: "M. Rodolphe Bial played with exquisite taste his variations on the air of The Old Folks at Home, and in reply to the enthusiastic encore tendered in a finished and highly artistic manner, the well known refrain of Yankee Doodle."

He is last documented in Australia as leading the band for a New Year's Eve ball in Ballarat on 31 December 1857. Perhaps dating his Australian visit, however, are his Yarra songs waltzes, published twenty years later (New York: Edward Schuberth, 1879; online:;,_Rudolf%29).


"A NEW VIOLINIST", The Argus (28 July 1857), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (6 August 1857), 8

[Advertisement], The Star (21 October 1857), 3

"CHARLIE NAPIER", The Star (27 October 1857), 2

[Advertisement], The Star (19 November 1857), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (29 December 1857), 3

Musical works (German sources):

Bibliography and resources:

BIANCHI, Eugenio (Signor)

Tenor vocalist

BIANCHI, Giovanna (Signora)

Soprano vocalist

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by January 1860 (from California)
Departed Sydney, NSW, 11 January 1862 (per Iconium, for San Francisco)


"THEATRICAL CHITCHAT", The Courier (5 May 1859), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (18 June 1859), 1

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (17 January 1860), 5

"THE THEATRE ROYAL ON SATURDAY. TO THE EDITOR", The Argus (23 January 1860), 5

"LAST NIGHT OF THE BIANCHIS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 January 1862), 4

"CLEARANCES", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 January 1862), 4

"MUSICAL AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 January 1862), 4

"THE BIANCHIS IN CALIFORNIA", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 November 1862), 5

Bibliography and resources:

George W. Martin, Verdi at the Golden Gate: opera and San Francisco in the Gold Rush years (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1993), 118


George W. Martin, Verdi in America: Oberto through Rigoletto (Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2011), 119

BIGGS, Jesse

Musician, bassoon player, organist, organ builder, and pianoforte tuner

Born England, 13 November 1819
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by 1856
Died Launceston, TAS, 23 August 1872, aged 53

Summary (after OHTA):

Jesse Biggs was born in London on 13 November 1819. After training with Gray & Davison in London, he is known to have built one organ in Britain, at St Margaret's Church, Stanford Rivers, Essex, but this appears no longer to exist. Arriving in Melbourne in 1856, he built the first organ in Holy Trinity Church, Williamstown, Victoria, opened in July 1857 and in 1859 moved to Hobart, Tasmania where he erected major organs at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, Hobart, the Mechanics' Institute, Launceston and Hobart Town Hall. He also "perfected" the imported organ at St. David's Cathedral, Hobart. He is likely to have provided assistance to the Launceston organ-builder Samuel Joscelyne. He was also said to be the most competent exponent of the bassoon in Tasmania. In 1871 he returned to Geelong to carry out work at Christ Church and All Saints' Church. According to contemporary newspapers now available online, Biggs appears now to have built a number of organs in Victoria and Tasmania, of which only a handful survive intact.

1864: Mr. J. Biggs, organ builder, has just completed, at his residence Upper Brisbane-street, a beautiful chamber organ, which he built to order for a gentleman in the country. This, we believe, is the first organ actually manufactured in Tasmania, the metal pipes being the only portion of it imported from England. It contains 6 stops :-l open diapason, 2 Dulciana, 3 stop diapason, wood bass, metal treble, 4 principal, 5 fifteenth, and 6 flute. The sound board is made of New South Wales cedar and American clear pine, which is equal to the Honduras mahogany, so generally used in England for this purpose. The bellows are made on an improved principle, which renders the labor of blowing so light that a child of seven years of age can perform it with ease. The case, which is not yet finished, is to be of cedar with silk panels. The whole of the work, turning included, has been performed by Mr. Biggs, in addition to his usual duties of tuning and repairing pianos, &c., since the 23rd February. Having a supply of metal pipes on hand, Mr. Biggs intends to build other organs for sale, and in a short time few places of worship in this colony will be without that most appropriate of all instruments for sacred music- a good organ.

1866: CHURCH ORGAN FOR SALE, containing 8 stops, and one octave, of Bourdon pedal pipes, 16 feet tone; two octaves of German pedals, acting on the keys. Will be sold a bargain. J. Biggs, Organ Builder, Brisbane-street. 15 July.

Obituary: The death of Mr. Jesse Biggs, musician and organ builder, has given another opportunity for the exercise of genuine charity. Through no fault of his own Mr. Biggs has left his family totally unprovided for, so much so that a few personal friends had to see that the last services rendered to him were properly and decorously carried out. Steps are now being taken towards holding a monster popular concert on behalf of his wife and family, and as the matter is in good hands, and the public of Launceston is not ungenerously inclined, it will doubtless be a success. Mr. Biggs, having superintended the erection of the organ at St. David's and the Town Hall in your city [Hobart], is consequently not wholly unknown in the South, and possibly there may be found some amongst those who will read this little notice of the deceased inclined to help the widow and the orphan. I had some slight acquaintance with Mr. Biggs, and believe that from the time the question of obtaining an organ for the Melbourne Town Hall was first mooted he cherished the hope of being in one way or another connected with that magnificent instrument. But for disease and ultimate death, who knows but his humble aspiration might have been fulfilled?  Requiescat in pace.

September 1872: On Monday evening a grand vocal and instrumental concert was given in the hall of the Mechanics' Institute in aid of the widow of the late Mr. Jesse Biggs. The large ball was well filled by a fashionable audience, though all classes were well represented. ... The concert commenced with Auber's overture to "Masaniello," by ten performers - Mr. Thos. Sharp, Mr. Abbott, and Mr. Chick (violins), Mr. Wm. Sharp (double bass), Mr Joscelyne and Mr. A. Hart (violoncellos), Mr. C. Galvin (clarionet), Mr. J. M. Davies (flute), Mr. A. Day and Mr. R. D. Harris (cornets), and Mrs. H. B. Nickolls presided at the pianoforte. The overture was excellently performed, in perfect time, and with fine effect. It gave entire satisfaction, and elicited universal applause ... The second part opened with the overture "L'ltaliana in Algeri," by the performers of the first overture with the addition of Mr. J. H. Melvyn, making a fourth violin, but using a tenor or viola. It was remarkably well performed, but the piece itself has not the swelling grandeur, force, body, and variety of the overture to Masaniello ...



On Tuesday evening the whole of the first, and the greater portion of the second parts of Haydn's "Creation," with selections from the works of Handel, Mendelssohn, and Beethoven, were performed in this church, in connection with the opening of an organ erected therein by Mr. Biggs, organ builder, Little Lonsdale street ... The organ, ably played by Mr. Boswell, organist of St. Peter's, is small but powerful, and its tone of excellent quality. The attendance was numerous, but not crowded. The receipts will scarcely clear the instrument from debt.

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (25 March 1862), 5

"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", Launceston Examiner (20 January 1863), 5

"TOWN TALK AND TABLE CHAT", The Cornwall Chronicle (11 May 1864), 4

"TOWN TALK AND TABLE CHAT", The Cornwall Chronicle (25 June 1864), 4

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (25 July 1866), 16

"OPENING OF THE NEW TOWN HALL", The Mercury (25 October 1866), 3

"LONGFORD", Launceston Examiner (18 June 1867), 5

"INSOLVENCY COURT", Launceston Examiner (7 September 1867), 5

[News], Launceston Examiner (13 February 1869), 4

"COMPLIMENTARY BENEFIT TO MR. BIGGS", The Mercury (30 June 1869), 2

[Advertisement], The Mercury (10 July 1869), 1

"SIGNOR GAGLIARDI'S BENEFIT CONCERT", The Mercury (12 July 1869), 2

"PROMENADE CONCERT", The Mercury (13 July 1869), 2

"NEWS OF THE WEEK", Launceston Examiner (2 October 1869), 2

"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE. THE ORGAN", Launceston Examiner (9 September 1871), 5

"DEATH", The Cornwall Chronicle (28 August 1872), 2

"OUR LAUNCESTON LETTER", The Mercury (30 August 1872), 2

"GRAND CONCERT AT THE MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", The Cornwall Chronicle (4 September 1872), 2

Bibliography and resources:

"Jesse Biggs - organbuilder", OHTA News 26/2 (April 2002), 4

UK, National Archives, Biggs Family Letters, Z 895

Z 895/1/Letter fourteen (pages 42-44), 25 December 1851, from Abraham to brother William: Mentions Jesse's diligence and skill in baking bread and building organs; Z 895/1/Letter fifteen (pages 45-47); 18 February 1852, from Abraham to brother William: Sent small box of various colonial woods (for the "Organ Builder").


Irish bagpiper

Active Sydney, NSW, 1823


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (2 January 1823), 4

IF BIGLEY, the Irish Bagpiper, will call at the GAZETTE OFFICE, he will hear of something to his advantage.





Active Sydney, NSW, 1820s's+Band (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[News], The Monitor (31 December 1827), 6

CAPTAIN PIPER'S old fiddler Billy, shipped himself as cook, on board the Ephemina; but on Mr. Cubit mustering the crew at the Heads as usual, he found poor Billy's certificate of freedom did not bear the signature of Mr. Healy. Billy was in consequence put back in the guard-boat, to the great mortification of the ship's company, who had provided him with a violin, in the hope of having some music during the ensuing Christmas.

BINDER, Marion (Miss M. A. [sic]; Mrs. Edward HURST)

Pianist, vocalist, music teacher, composer

Active Ballarat, VIC, by 1862

1862: MISS BINDER will give Lessons in Singing and Music after the most approved method of the best English masters, on moderate terms. Schools attended. Apply, Upton House Establishment for Young Ladies, Clarendon street, off Lydiar-street, Soldiers' Hill; or at Evans Brothers, next Bath's Hotel, Lydlard street. N.B.-Mrs BINDER is anxious to solicit the attention of the public to her collection of Music now for sale, which she will add to by every mail.

1866: Miss Binder had been appointed organist of the Ballarat Harmonic Society, in the place of Mrs W. Little, retired. Miss Binder is an accomplished musician, whose public performances on the piano-forte some concerts back will be fresh in memory. The society is at present rehearsing Handel's serenata, "Acis and Galatea," and Romberg's "Lay of the Bell," with a view to their production at a public concert to be held towards the close of June.

1877: Mrs. Edward Hurst, the wife of a gentleman well-known in connection with various public movements in Sandhurst, appears to be making a name for herself as a musical composer. A number of the musical profession and other gentlemen assembled at Harrison's music warehouse. Ballarat, on the evening of the 20th ult., at a rehearsal of two musical compositions by Mrs. Hurst, music teacher of Creswick road, entitled "The Henrietta Waltz" and "The Ballarat March" respectively. The opinion expressed by those present way that the waltz was much superior to the ordinary run of terpsichorean music. The march, too, has a good martial, vigorous melody throughout; and both productions show that Mrs. Hurst possesses, besides her skill as a pianiste, some ability as a musical composer.


[Advertisement], The Star [Ballarat] (15 April 1862), 3

[Advertisement], The Star [Ballarat] (7 May 1862), 3

[Advertisement]: "THE BALLARAT GRAMMAR-SCHOOL", The Ballarat Star (7 January 1865), 1

"NEWS AND NOTES", The Ballarat Star (14 May 1866), 2

"MUSIC IN BALLARAT", The Musical World 44/42 (27 October 1866), 690

"MARRIAGE", The Ballarat Star (6 January 1870), 2

[News], The Bendigo Advertiser (31 October 1877), 3 

Musical works:

The Ballaarat Waltz in The Illustrated Melbourne Post (25 January 1865)

Bibliography and resources

Doggett 2006


Orchestral musician

Active Sydney, NSW, 1854


[Advertisement], Empire (25 August 1854), 1

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (26 August 1854), 3


Town Cryer (Sydney), convict

Active Sydney, until 1813


[Notice], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (10 August 1811), 1

HIS Excellency the Governor has been pleased to appoint John Bingham to be Public Town Cryer at Sydney, in the room of Samuel Potter, deceased

"CIVIL DEPARTMENT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 July 1813), 1

Bibliography and resources:

Michael Flynn, The Second Fleet: Britain's grim convict armada of 1790 (Library of Australian History, 1993), 475

BINNING, Thomas Bains

Pianist (pupil of Mr. C. S. Packer), teacher of music, composer

Born ? Sydney, 1853
Active Sydney, by 1879
Died Ashfield, NSW, 15 August 1925, aged 70


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 March 1879), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 July 1880), 9

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 July 1880), 2

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (17 January 1885), 1

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 May 1887), 8

"AUSTRALIA, a new song", Australian Town and Country Journal (18 June 1887), 10

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 August 1925), 8 

Musical works:

Only to love (music by T. B. Binning; words by Charles Sandys Packer) ([18-?])

Australia (song; words by J. I. Marshall; music by T. B. Binning) (Sydney: Gibbs, Shallard, & Co., [1887])


Pupil of Charles Packer; accompanist for Equitable Musical Society


(Biraban, John McGILL, M'GILL, MacGILL, MacGIL, Maggill, Eagle Hawk, Barabahn)

Awabakal Indigenous leader, songman, culture and song informant

Died Newcastle, 14 April 1846 (NLA persistent identifier)


Biraban, 1839


"CONFERENCE WITH THE NATIVES", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (12 January 1830), 2

An interesting circumstance which occurred at the GOVERNOR'S late Conference with the Aborigines, was accidentally omitted in our account of Saturday. A native Chief, of the name of Barabahn, has resided for a considerable time with the Rev. Mr. THRELKELD at Lake Macquarie, and by his intelligence and steady application has been of great service to Mr. T. in his endeavours to reduce the Aboriginal language to a grammatical form. Of the honourable proficiency which that gentleman has made in his arduous undertaking, he attributes no small share to the assistance afforded him by Barabahn; and having reported this to the GOVERNOR, HIS EXCELLENCY was pleaded to confer upon the Chief, in the presence of his numerous countrymen at Parramatta on Wednesday last, a badge of distinction, consisting of a brass plate bearing this inscription - "Barabahn, or Mac Gil, Chief of the Tribe at Bartalah, on Lake Macquarie; a Reward for his assistance in reducing his Native Tongue to a written Language." In suspending this badge upon the breast of the Chief, His EXCELLENCY commended his laudable conduct, and expressed the pleasure he felt in thus rewarding it. Mr. THRELKELD has been singularly, and most undeservedly, abandoned by the Directors of the London Society to which he belonged; but a number of respectable gentlemen, interested in the cause of the Aborigines, have liberally subscribed for the support of his valuable Mission; and it is in contemplation to adopt such measures as may enable him to conduct it on a permanent footing. The diligence with which he has applied to the study of the language, has established his Missionary character high in the estimation of many of the most intelligent and influential members of the community. Labouring under discouragements of a peculiarly trying nature, but which, from the best of motives, we forbear to make public, Mr. THRELKELD, in remaining firm and undaunted at his post, has exhibited a fortitude beyond all praise, - proving himself above yielding to the caprices of ill-informed and ill-judging men. We do not pledge ourselves to a concurrence with the whole of the proceedings on his part which have come to our knowledge, but we most unequivocally express our conviction, that for a true Missionary spirit, and for a zealous and able discharge of his duties as the Missionary of the New Holland tribes, he has entitled himself not only to the praises of his quondam constituents in England, but to those of every true philanthropist. We hope his labours may prove so successful as to shame his unfeeling accusers, and to demonstrate the justice of the commendation we have felt it our duty to bestow upon him.

"DIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (1 May 1846), 3

DIED, At Newcastle, on the 14th April, M'Gill, the aboriginal native well known a few years back at the Supreme Court as assistant interpreter in several cases in which the aborigines were tried for capital offences. He was a living witness against the assertion of the French Phrenologists, "that the blacks of this colony were physically incapable of instruction, from organic malformation."

Bibliography and resources:

Threlkeld 1850, 5-7, "Reminiscences of Biraban" (image above is frontispiece) 


"Biraban", Wikipeadia

BIRD, Isabella Tempest (Miss PAUL; Mrs. Isaac BIRD; later Mrs. RICH)

See under main family entry Tempest Paul and her Currency Lasses

BIRKETT, Richard

Composer, songwriter

Active Australia, 1867


[Advertisement], Empire (1 October 1867), 1

[News], The Argus (5 November 1867), 4

"The Australian Digger's Song" has been published by Messrs. Clarson, Massina, and Co., at their Sydney establishment. The air and words are by Mr. Richard Birkett, who has had the assistance of a professional gentleman in arranging the music. We are unable to compliment the author on the words of his song, which are superlatively stupid.

BISCACCIANTI, Alessandro (Count)

Opera company director, agent, impresario, violoncello player

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 15 December 1871 (per Nevada, from Honolulu, 20 November)
Died Fitzroy, VIC, 19 April 1879, aged 61

1872-01-20: The concerts at the Exhibition have been grand successes, such as have not been hitherto seen in Sydney. That of Monday last, was, in some respects, superior to its predecessor. With more time at their disposal, and greater conveniences at command, the managers, Mr. John Bonnott and Signor Biscaccianti, were able to make their arrangements so that there should not be the slightest cause of complaint. The business tact of the former and the agreeable politeness of the Signor, a gentleman of distinguished position in his own country, and the husband of the young artiste Signora [Elise] Biscaccianti - an American who made a great name in the musical world as a vocalist a few years ago, her early decease being greatly regretted ... [recte, they had separated; she died in 1896]

1872-02-07: The first of the final series of three concerts to be given by the Agatha States Opera Company took place last night at the Town hall. The attendance was, unfortunately, the smallest we have ever seen in that place at any similar entertainment. The programme introduced a novelty in the shape of a violoncello solo, by Signoi Biscaccianti, which was in every respect worthy of the unanimous approval it evoked; the theme was the "Ave Maria," of Gounod, with J. S. Bach's first prelude as an accompaniment. This melody is now too well known to need further description at our hands. It will suffice to say that Signor Biscaccianti played it with great feeling and finished execution. At the repetition of the subject, Madame Agatha States sang the melody, with violoncello obligate accompaniment, which, with the piano, formed an admirable embellishment to the tune ...

1879-04-22: Signor A. Biscaccianti, who for several years past has been closely identified with the musical profession in Melbourne, died on Saturday evening at his residence, Royal Terrace, Fitzroy, after a lingering illness. He first came to Melbourne as agent for the States opera troupe, and subsequently acted in a similar capacity for the Alice May company, and for Miss Jenny Claus. Some months ago he visited California for the benefit of his health, and since his return has been identified with many high-class musical performances. The deceased gentleman (says the Age) was an accomplished player on the violoncello, and was highly respected for his courteous manners and business integrity.

1879-04-26: The musical public and profession in Melbourne will learn with regret, but without surprise, of the death of Signor Biscaccianti, which occurred on Saturday evening, at 7 o'clock, at his residence, No. 6 Royal-terrace, Nicholson-street, Fitzroy. The late Signor Biscaccianti arrived here about seven years ago with the opera company which included Madame Agatha States, Signor Cecchi, Signor Orlandini, Signor Susini, and Signor Giorza, and has at various intervals acted since then as agent for the higher order of musical entertainments. Signor Biscaccianti was a credit to the business in which he was engaged, being a man of gentle manners and honourable character.


"Musical and Dramatic Review", Australian Town and Country Journal (20 January 1872), 21

[News], The Argus (7 February 1872), 5

"THE CALIFORNIAN MAIL. Arrival of the Nevada", The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser (19 December 1871), 4

"Deaths", The Argus (21 April 1879), 1

"TOWN TALK", Geelong Advertiser (22 April 1879), 2

"TOWN NEWS", The Australasian (26 April 1879), 19 

Bibliography and resources:

"Eliza Biscaccianti", Wikipedia

BISHOP, Mr. (? William)

Bandmaster (96th Regiment)

Active Sydney and Parramatta, NSW, by 1842; Launceston and Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1843-49


The band of the 96th Regiment was active in NSW in 1842. Bishop and his band were in Launceston in March 1843, when they assisted at John and Eliza Bushelle's concert there. He and two other musicians assisted James Henri Anderson at the opening of the Launceston Synagogue in 1846. Hobart heard the band for the first time in October 1846:

On Saturday, a detachment of this regiment, with another of the 51st, were brigaded in the Domain ... and the attendance of spectators was rather numerous. For the first lime, we heard with attention the fine Band of the 96th, which, under the able and talented mastership of Mr. Bishop, will prove a source of great delight to all lovers of music. It is indeed to be hoped that the performances of this Band will become more frequent, so that our good citizens may derive as much pleasure from the same, as did our neighbours of the northern capital. The Drum-Major, who marches in front as a Drum-Major should do, keeps time with his staff in a very stately manner: the lesser Band is of drums and fifes, and not of bugles, &c , and it is a very good one.

At Mrs. Chester's Launceston concert in September 1848:

A celebrated Sinfonia by Haydn was performed by a portion of the band, assisted by Mr. Beckford, who lent the music for the occasion. Mr. Bishop the master of the Band, and Mr. Howson, Senr., displayed much ability in this portion of the entertainment.

According to a much later recollection (1917)

The band of the same had a great number of clarionets, and was very sweet toned. Mr. Bishop was bandmaster.


[Advertisement], Launceston Advertiser (30 March 1843), 1

"MADAME GAUTROT'S CONCERT", The Cornwall Chronicle (18 February 1846), 132

"THE JEWS. OPENING OF THE SYNAGOGUE AT LAUNCESTON", Launceston Advertiser (2 April 1846), 2

"THE 96TH REGIMENT", Colonial Times (13 October 1846), 3

"SECOND DAY", The Cornwall Chronicle (17 April 1847), 303

"THE REGATTA", Colonial Times (3 December 1847), 3

"Mrs. Chester's Concert", The Cornwall Chronicle (13 September 1848), 19

"THE 96TH", The Cornwall Chronicle (31 January 1849), 340



Soprano vocalist

Born London, 9 January 1810
Died New York, 18/19 March 1884

THIS ENTRY IS A STUB, to document arrival and departure details for her 3 Australian tours (1855-57; 1868-69; 1874-75)

First tour: Arrived Sydney, 3 December 1855 (per Kit Carson, from San Francisco); departed Sydney, 21 September 1857 (per Manitou, for Callao)

Second tour: Arrived King George Sound (for Adelaide), 8 May 1868 (per Geelong, from Point de Galle); departed Sydney, 16 December 1868 (per Hero, for Auckland, New Zealand); arrived Melbourne, 24 February 1869 (per Alhambra, from Wellington, NZ); departed Adelaide, around 24 May 1869 (per mail steamer, for Europe)

Third tour: Arrived Sydney, 9 November 1874 (per City of Melbourne, from San Francisco); departed Sydney, 7 August 1875 (per Osyth, via Melbourne and Cape Town, for London)

References (1): "MADAME BISHOP", Empire (4 December 1855), 5

"GRAND CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 September 1857), 7

"CLEARANCES", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 September 1857), 4

(2) "ARRIVALS", The South Australian Advertiser (13 May 1868), 2

"CLEARANCES", Empire (17 December 1868), 2

"MADAME ANNA BISHOP", South Australian Register (17 April 1869), 2

Since her visit to the colony [South Australia] in June last, Madame Bishop has visited Melbourne, Sandhurst, Echuca, Castlemaine, Daylesford, Kyneton, Geelong, Ballarat, Sydney, Newcastle, Maitland, Brisbane, Ipswich, Auckland, Nelson, Christ Church, Lyttelton, Dunedin, Launceston, Hobart Town, and back again to Melbourne.

"MAIL STEAMER", South Australian Register (24 May 1869), 2

(3) [News], Empire (10 November 1874), 2

"DEPARTURES", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 August 1875), 4

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Mercury (14 August 1875), 2

Obituaries: "DEATH OF MADAME ANNA BISHOP", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 May 1884), 6

"MADAME ANNA BISHOP", The Argus (3 May 1884), 10

Note: Some previous histories have stated or implied that, at the time of her first visit in 1855, Bishop was reduced to visiting outposts like Australia because she was unwelcome in homeland Britain, on account of her adulterous relationship with Bochsa. Yet I doubt very much, from contemporary sources I have seen, that this is an adequate account of the truth. Henry Bishop's death in 1855, followed by Bochsa's early in 1856 at the outset of her tour, may have precluded wider discussion of any perceived immorality on her part. Notwithstanding, when Anna left Australian for South America in 1857, her musical director and agent, George Loder and Rees, made for London, presumably there to organise her return. And in December 1858, having perhaps tested the waters in the colonies, she appeared again on a London stage for the first time in 10 years.


"MUSICAL MATTERS IN MELBOURNE", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 July 1856), 5

"DEPARTURES", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 September 1857), 4

"MADAME ANNA BISHOP'S CONCERT", The Musical World (18 December 1858), 804

"EXTER HALL-MADAME ANNA BISHOP'S CONCERT", The Illustrated Magazine (25 January 1859), 52

"Bishop, Lady Anna", in Edward Walford, Men of the time: a biographical dictionary of eminent living characters (including women) (London: Routledge, Warne, & Routledge, 1862), 71-72

Bibliography and resources:

Richard Davis, Anna Bishop: the intrepid prima donna (Sydney: Currency Press, 1997)

Gyger 1999)


Musician (European Band)

Active Sydney, 1858


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (11 September 1858), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 October 1858), 10

BITTON, Edward

Music hall proprietor, publican

Active Sydney, NSW, 1869

September 1869: At a Licensing Court held yesterday, applications were made by Edward Bitton, of the "Melodian," Pitt-street, and Henry Greig, of the Bush Tavern, corner of Park and Elizabeth streets, for the renewal for the present month of licenses permitting them to have music and singing in their public-houses. Objections were brought against the granting of licenses in both cases, on the ground that these music halls were the resort of women of ill fame, &c. The Bench in both instances declined to grant a renewal.

October 1869: Edward Bitton, of 182, Castlereagh-street, late publican. Cause of insolvency: Loss of music license, depression of trade, and pressure of creditor. Liabilities, £488. Assets, £55. Deficiency, £433, Mr. Mackenzie, official assignee.


"LICENSING COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 September 1869), 2

"INSOLVENCY COURT", Empire (26 October 1869), 4

BLACK, John Reddie

Vocalist, delineator, journalist, photographer

Born Dysart, Fyfe, Scotland, 8 January 1826
Active Adelaide, SA, by 1858
Died Yokohama, Japan, 11 June 1880 (NLA persistent identifier)


Having been briefly an Enfield resident and Adelaide businessman, Mr. J. R. Black was "not unknown to his auditors" when he appeared at Kensington Institute in Adelaide in July 1858. Though "few perhaps who have admired his occasional songs or duets imagined him capable of arresting the attention of an audience for an entire evening", nevertheless, as accompanied by the talented young pianist Richard Baxter White, R.A.M., "in this he was completely successful". He toured themed programs of Scotch and Patriotic songs, interlarded with anecdotes, that became surprisingly popular. In Sydney in November 1859, a complimentary benefit was organised on his behalf with patronage at the highest level. Later in Sydney, W. J. Johnson published John  Blockley's Tennyson song Break, break, break as "Sung by Mr. J. R. Black", perhaps coinciding with his performances of the song there in April 1861 (Johnson also issued the song without the reference to Blockley; see In Hobart, the bookbinder George Rolwegan issued Caller Herrin as "The Celebrated Scotch Song ... as sung by Mr. J. R. Black, with symphony from Knapton's variations", first advertised on 31 December 1861. He had apparently left Australia by early 1863, and in 1864 it was widely but incorrectly reported that he had died in Calcutta. By 1864 was in Japan, where he worked as a photographer and publisher of English language newspapers including The Japan Herald and The Far East. He also published a book Young Japan. His son, Henry James Black, born in Adelaide on 22 December 1858, reportedly became Japan's first foreign-born Kabuki actor.


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (29 June 1858), 1

"MR. J. R. BLACK'S ENTERTAINMENT", South Australian Register (1 July 1858), 2

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (26 July 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (7 January 1859), 3

"THE NATIONAL MELODIES OF MANY LANDS", Empire (28 September 1859), 8

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 November 1859), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1859), 1

"SOCIAL", Empire (12 November 1859), 4

[Advertisement], The Moreton Bay Courier (28 July 1860), 4

[Advertisement], Empire (23 April 1861), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 April 1861), 1

[Advertisement], The Mercury (31 May 1861), 1

"MR. J. R. BLACK" & "MR. T. P. HILL", The Mercury (5 June 1861), 2

[Advertisement], The Mercury (31 December 1861), 3

"OLD-TIME MEMORIES", South Australian  Register (10 August 1891), 6


"J. R. Black", Wikipedia

Bibliography and resources:

Ian McArthur, Mediating modernity: Henry Black and narrated hybridity in Meiji Japan (Ph.D thesis, University of Sydney, 2002)

 Ian McArthur, Henry Black: on stage in Meiji Japan (Clayton: Monash University Publishing, [2013]) 


Pianoforte maker and tuner

Active Melbourne, by December 1859
Died Malvern, VIC, 24 September 1914, in his 83rd year ("pianoforte expert; a colonist of 62 years")


[Advertisement], The Argus (23 December 1859), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 April 1860), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 June 1860), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (20 October 1860), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (20 February 1861), 3

"DEATHS", The Argus (26 September 1914), 1



Arrived Adelaide, by October 1853


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (19 October 1853), 2

Miss Blackhurst, nine years a pupil in the Royal Academy of Music, London, respectfully informs the Ladies and Gentlemen of Adelaide, that a Grand Soiree Musicale will be held in the Royal Victoria Theatre, on Wednesday, 19th October ... Instrumental Performers - Messrs. Thurloe, Lillywhite, John Cobbin, Swift, John Cobbin, jun., M'Cullagh, Walker, Tuxford, Smith, Mantegeni. Vocal Performers - Messrs. Blackhurst, Walker, Risely, Allen, Knight, Mrs. Hastings, Miss Petman, Miss Blackhurst. Leader: Mr. Chapman. Mr. Solomons Grand Piano will be used for this occasion.


Bombardon player, bandsman (99th Regiment)

Regiment active Australia, 1843-56


"THE BAND OF THE 99TH", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 September 1844), 3

[Advertisement], The Australian (29 November 1845), 1



Contralto, pianist, composer

Active Wollongong, NSW, by 1889 (NLE persistent identifier)


"CONCERT AT WOLLONGONG", Evening News (16 January 1889), 3

"NEW MUSIC", Australian Town and Country Journal (15 September 1894), 45

"MISS SYLVIA BLACKSTON", The Sydney Morning Herald (6 January 1904), 7

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 November 1911), 6

"AUSTRALIA'S GREAT ONES OF THE STAGE", Arrow (9 November 1917), 3

BLAIR, Robert

Musicseller, stationer, general storeholder

Active Maitland, by 1852/3
Died Maitland, NSW, 18 September 1884


[Advertisement]: "MUSIC", The Maitland Mercury (6 April 1858), 3

"DEATHS", The Maitland Mercury (20 September 1884), 1

"THE LATE MR. ROBERT BLAIR", The Maitland Mercury (20 September 1884), 4

"THE LATE ROBERT BLAIR", Singleton Argus (24 September 1884), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Val Rudkin (comp.), "Robert Blair (1819-1884) Bookseller & Stationer", Bulletin of Maitland and District Historical Society 20/2 (May 2013)



Active South Australia, 1859


"BLAKE v. CRESWICK", South Australian Register (22 September 1859), 3

For £10 10s, musician's bill ... the plaintiff, who stated that he was a musician had played, according to the instructions of the defendant, at various places in the country. He had performed 26 nights altogether. The price agreed upon was 15s. per night.


Bandsman, Band of the 3rd Regiment (Buffs)

Active NSW, 1823-27 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


London, National Archives, PRO, WO12/2118: 3rd Regiment of Foot (Buffs) payrolls 1824-26; microfilm copy at SL-NSW: PRO Reel 3695


Band of the 3rd Regiment (Buffs)


Amateur tenor vocalist, former convict, musical instrument repairer

Born England, 1784
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 18 January 1816 (as convict per Fanny)
Died Sydney, NSW, 27 October 1841, aged 57 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


At the Sydney Amateur Concert in July 1826, Blanch, making a first appearance, sang Braham's Dulce Domum. He repeated Dulce Domum at the 1827 Anniversary Dinner, and he and Barnett Levey provided songs for the 1831 dinner.

He was probably the James Blanch who arrived as a convict in 1816; who advertised as a "Mathematical and Philosophical Instrument Maker" in 1822; and later as a musical instrument repairer, brass founder, and ironmonger; and who died in 1841.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (8 February 1822), 2

"THE AMATEUR CONCERT", The Monitor (21 July 1826), 5

"SYDNEY AMATEUR CONCERT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (22 July 1826), 3

Mr. Blanch (a first appearance), gave Braham's delightful ballad of "Dulce Domum", in a manner which evinced, in his conception and execution, a style of uncommon purity and elegance, and manifested unquestionable pretensions to vocal excellence.

"Amateur Concert", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (9 September 1826), 3

... A comic glee, When Arthur first at Court, by Messrs. Clark, Blanch, and Edwards, concluded the first part ... Mr. Blanch sang the Thorn, with considerable taste and feeling.

"THE ANNIVERSARY DINNER", The Monitor (27 January 1827), 5

... A Patriotic song by Mr. Hill, and "Dulce Domum" by Mr. Blanch were greatly applauded, the style of singing of each being well adapted to his subject. Mr. Blanch certainly breathes forth sweet tones, which in the lofty new Court House sounded like a flute.

"AUSTRALIAN SOCIETY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (29 January 1831), 2

"DIED", The Sydney Monitor (1 November 1841), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Julian Holland, "James Blanch: Australia's first meteorologist?", The Australian Meteorologist 21 (May 2000), 3-4


Vocalist, licensed singing master (Department of Education)

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1863
Died Deepdene, VIC, 11 September 1918, aged 81

1866: The second concert of the Melbourne Philharmonic Society for the present year was given last evening, in St. George's-hall ... The first part consisted of Spohr's sublime and original oratorio of the "Last Judgment". It is about a quarter of a century since the late Edward Taylor Gresham, professor, translated the original into English, and presided over the performance of the oratorio in Norwich, and afterwards in all the principal towns in England. The impression created soon after by the works of Mendelssohn caused a partial eclipse of Spohr's works for some time, but the interest therein has revived, and the author's claims are now fairly appreciated. It is a bold enterprise for any but the most efficient choral societies to attempt to do strict justice to the productions of either of these modern masters, but the sudden, original, and surprising modulations and transitions which characterised Spohr, severely test the skill of performers, both vocal and instrumental; and this should be considered in any fair criticisms on the attempt. The society had to rely on local talent for the principal vocal parts. Mrs. J. C. Ellis, Miss M. Liddle, Mr. C. A. Donaldson, and Mr. Charles Blanchard, undertook nearly the whole of these, and as professional vocalists of high attainments were not accessible, we think the musical public should fairly appreciate the valuable aid of the amateur principals at such concerts. ... Mr. C. Blanchard gave the solos "I am the First and the Last," "I know, saith the Lord," and "Come, said a voice," with excellent effect.

1876: Mr. Charles Blanchard has been appointed by the Minister as singing master at the Sale, Maffra, and Stratford schools.


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 July 1863), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (14 September 1864), 8

"PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", The Argus (12 September 1866), 6

"PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", The Argus (17 July 1867), 7

"SALE. Tuesday", The Argus (31 May 1876), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (12 September 1918), 1

"WILLS AND ESTATES", The Argus (10 October 1918), 4


Corporal of the Band; "Master of the Band of the 48th Regiment"

Born c.1784
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 3 August 1817 (per Matilda)
Died Bathurst, NSW, 18 February 1832


Blizzard arrived with his regiment on the Matilda in August 1817. He had enlisted in the 48th in 1793 at St. Vincent in the West Indies as a 10-year-old boy drummer, his father being the master of the band. His band was recorded as playing with "delightful effect" at a fete champetre held by Captain Piper in 1819, and again in 1820. Given this association, it is possible that Blizzard was later a member, perhaps even master, of Captain Piper's Band of Music in Sydney and/or later in Bathurst. He remained in NSW having taken his discharge on 25 June 1824, and received a grant of land in 1825. He was appointed a constable in Sydney in 1828. He was active as a freemason (Lodge of Australia No.820, English Constitution, 6 April, 1829) and was publican of Golden Fleece Inn, Kelso, "Old Bathrust".


[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (4 December 1819), 2

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 November 1820), 2

"Government notice", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (28 January 1828), 1

"BATHURST", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (28 February 1832), 3

Died. On Saturday, after a short illness, Mr. William Blizard, landlord of the Golden Fleece Inn, and formerly Master of the Band of H. M. 48th Regiment. The deceased has left behind him the reputation of a good soldier, and an honest man.

Bibliography and resources:

Sargent, The colonial garrison

"Blizzard, William", Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825

"Private William Blizzard"

"A brief Australian masonic history: the Irish connection"


Cornopean and cornet-a-piston player

Active Melbourne, 1853


[Advertisement], The Argus (5 March 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (17 March 1853), 12:

? "BAKERY HILL SOIREE", The Star (30 June 1857), 3

BLOUET, Emile (? pseud.)


Active Sydney, 1888


"Cremorne Galop", Australian Town and Country Journal (9 June 1888), 33

on the name Blouet, see "The Week", South Australian Weekly Chronicle (11 February 1888), 11

BLOXHAM, Ada (Beatrice)

Mezzo-soprano vocalist, teacher of singing and Sol-fa

Born Jolimont, East Melbourne, VIC, 13 July 1865



Summary (after Stevens, with additions): Bloxham was a pupil of Emily Patton in Melbourne  from whom she learnt Tonic Sol-fa. She won the first Clarke Scholarship to the newly-established Royal College of Music in London where she spent four years studying with Madame Otto Goldschmidt (Jenny Lind) and gained the Associate diploma (ARCM). She returned to Melbourne in mid-1888, and made her debut return at a Saturday popular concert in Cowen's Centennial Exhibition concert series in August. She practised at a teacher in Coburg before going to Japan where she taught Tonic Sol-fa with Emily Patton at Yokohama and in Tokyo. She then went to South Africa where she married in 1901 (Mrs. John Edwin Palmer). By 1912 she was teaching Tonic Sol-fa in the south of England but returned to South Africa in the early 1920s, resuming her Tonic Sol-fa teaching at Durban.


[Advertisement], The Argus (26 January 1880), 8

"SIR W. J. CLARKE MUSICAL SCHOLARSHIP", Illustrated Australian News (21 February 1883), 27

"MISS ADA BEATRICE BLOXHAM", The Australian Sketcher (11 April 1883), 58

[News], The Argus (12 February 1887), 8

"SPECIAL TELEGRAMS", The Argus (21 May 1888), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (18 August 1888), 20


"THE TONIC SOL-FA ASSOCIATION", The Argus (8 October 1888), 10

Bibliography and resources:

Biographical notes by Robin S. Stevens.


Music printer and lithographer

Born Ireland, c.1819
Arrived Wellington, NZ, 23 April 1841 (per Olympus from Gravesend, 9 December 1840)
Arrived Sydney, NSW, by December 1841 (? per Lalla Rook)
Arrived Hobart, by mid 1843
Departed Hobart, late 1844 (for Hong Kong)
Died London, 11 May 1846, aged 27 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


Bluett arrived in Sydney via New Zealand late in 1841. The inscription "T. Bluet. Print." appears with the picture engraving on the cover of the undated Savourneen deelish for Francis Ellard, and very early in 1843 for Isaac Nathan he lithographed the songs Australia the wide and the free and The Aboriginal father.

Bluett moved on to Hobart by mid-1843, where he worked for James A. Thomson, and thus probably had a hand in Thomson's edition of John Howson's first set of Tasmanian waltzes in July. By October, he was advertising in his own name offering "Lithographic Drawings, Maps, Plans, Music ... &c." and it may have been him who issued John Howson's second set of Tasmanian waltzes in November. His last known musical print in March 1844 was Joseph Gautrot's Josephian hymn. Bluett was in Hong Kong by late March 1845. He died in London in May 1846 as the result of an accidental gunshot wound.

My thanks to Paul Bartonfor sharing his research findings.


[Unclaimed letters], Australasian Chronicle (11 July 1843), 4

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (18 July 1843), 1

[Advertisement], The Courier (6 October 1843), 1

[Advertisement], The Courier (21 July 1843), 1

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (7 November 1843), 1

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (21 November 1843), 2

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (19 March 1844), 1

[Advertisement], The Courier (5 April 1844), 3

"SACRED MUSIC", The Courier (5 April 1844), 2

[British news], Launceston Examiner (29 August 1846), 3

A most extraordinary assault, of a murderous tendency, whatever the intention may have been, was committed in Drury Lane. Thomas Blewitt, a young married man, was returning to his lodging in White Horse Yard, Drury Lane, about half-past eight o'clock, when, as he approached Prince's Street, a youth fired a pistol at him, wounding him in the chest. The wounded man was taken to Charing Cross Hospital; where it was found that a bullet had passed through the thorax. After the youth had fired at Blewitt, he ran up Drury Lane. He was met and seized by a Police man, who had been attracted by the smoke and noise, and was hastening towards Prince's Street: but the lad exclaimed that a pistol had gone off by accident; and as the crowd were calling out that a man had shot himself, tihe Policeman let him go.

[News], The Courier (31 October 1846), 3

The trial of John Graham for shooting Thomas Bluett, ended in his acquittal, on the ground that it was accidental. Mr. Bluett, we believe, was at one period resident in Hobart Town, occupying premises in Liverpool-street.

Bibliography and resources:

Paul Barton, "Thomas Bluett, lithographer", Australiana (May 2006), 20-26

Thomas Bluett, DAAO

BOAM, Phillip

Theatre musician, orchestra leader, violinist, composer

Active Melbourne, by 1855; Sydney, until 1866


"Mr. Boam's Celebrated Quadrille Band" was active in Melbourne in 1854, and Boam was leader of the orchestra at Sydney's Royal Lyceum Theatre in March 1855, the proprietor even taking out an advertisement warning off poachers:

Caution. I, AUGUSTUS LEOPOLDT, having, by written agreement engaged Mr. BOAM, musician, for a certain period from the date of the 17th March, 1855, this is to give notice to all parties not to engage the said Mr. Boam, or legal proceedings will be instituted against them by me.

Boam was in Hobart leading the orchestra at the Theatre Royal in 1857, as well as offering to teach violin, and appeared in Maitland in 1862 with Marmaduke Wilson. At the Victoria Theatre in Sydney in April 1863, he was in charge of the orchestra with no less a musician than John Gibbs playing under him.

He returned from London on board the Great Britain by June, bringing with him copies of:

the last sensational works, viz. : - East Lynne, Henry Dunbar, The Mariner's Compass, Orange Girl, Lost in London, &c. The abovenamed dramas, purchased by Mr. Boam with the sole right of disposing of them to any of the managers in the Australian colonies, protected by the Dramatic Authors Society ... P. Boam, musical director, Prlnce of Wales Opera House, Sydney.

In that same month, at the Victoria Theatre, the season was "closed by Mr. Charles Walsh singing a very pretty song entitled Father dear, come home, composed by Mr. Boam".


[Advertisement], The Argus (16 August 1854), 8

[Advertisement], Empire (17 March 1855), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (19 March 1855), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 March 1855), 4

[Advertisement], The Hobart Mercury (13 April 1857), 2

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (28 January 1862), 1

"OLYMPIC THEATRE", The Maitland Mercury (28 January 1862), 2

"LYCEUM THEATRE", Empire (16 January 1863), 4

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Empire (7 April 1863), 4

 [Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 September 1863), 1

"THE VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 June 1866), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 June 1866), 1


Vocalist, pianist, teacher of music

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 19 January 1833 (per Guardian, from London, 4 September 1832)
Departed Sydney, NSW, 23 May 1837 (per Fortune, for London)

: (NLA persistent identifier)


She arrived from London with her husband early in 1733. From April 1834, Mrs. Boatright offered board and tuition to young ladies at her Bunker Hill Establishment. She sang, along with Juana Ellard, in the Philharmonic Society concert in September 1834, in Maria Taylor's concert at the Pulteney Hotel in March 1835, and again for Thomas Stubbs's concert in April. She embarked for London in May 1837.

1834 (September): We had not the pleasure of hearing Mrs. B. at the first concert, but her song of the Deserter [Haynes Bayly], with the dead march and muffled drum accompaniment, was one of the most effective performances of the evening. This lady also, with Mr. C. [Cavendish] performed the air, O Dolce Contento, arranged as a duet for the pianoforte [Latour], in a very superior style.


"ARRIVALS", The Australian (25 January 1833), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (7 April 1834), 3

"THE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Sydney Monitor (3 September 1834), 3

"PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (4 September 1834), 2

"Mr. Lewis's Concert", The Sydney Monitor (20 December 1834), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (21 March 1835), 3

"CONCERT", The Sydney Monitor (28 March 1835), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (20 April 1835), 3

"THE CONCERT", The Sydney Herald (23 April 1835), 2

"SHIP NEWS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 May 1837), 2

But see also, re Mr. J. Boatright:

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Sydney Herald (6 October 1836), 2

"LAW INTELLIGENCE", The Sydney Herald (29 June 1837), 2

Bibliography and resources:

Mrs. Boatright, DAAO 

BOBART, Henry Hodgkinson

Clergyman, amateur musician
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 2 November 1835 (on the Lotus, en route to NZ)
Died Parramatta, NSW, 19 July 1854, aged 47



Bobart owned and installed the first organ in St John's, Parramatta, in 1841.

1854-08-15: A MEETING of the parishioners of St. John's and other friends of the late Rev. H. H. Bobart, M.A., was held in the vestry of St. John's Church, on Friday last, at twelve o'clock, for the purpose of taking into consideration the most appropriate manner of testifying respect for the memory of that much-lamented minister ... He (Mr. Bobart) was also a devout admirer of sacred music, and was ever ready to sing the the praises of God in the midst of the congregation.


"PARRAMATTA", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 August 1854), 2 


"Rev H. H. Bobart", Prospect Heritage Trust 

Bibliography and resources:

Rushworth 1988, 23

BOCHSA, Nicholas Charles (The Chevalier BOCHSA)

Harpist, pianist, conductor, composer, teacher

Born Montmédy, France, 9 August 1789
Arrived Sydney NSW, 3 December 1855 (per Kit Carson from San Francisco)
Died Sydney, 6 January 1856 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)



He was son of a Bohemian musician, Charles (Karl) Bochsa, and his name was generally pronounced BOX-sa by his homeleand British, American, and Australian contemporaries; see, for example: "A FRENCHMAN", The Courier (28 May 1841), 4:


A former teacher in England of later Australian residents Lewis Lavenu, Stephen Marsh, Charles Packer, Ernesto Spagnoletti (senior), and Madame De Storr, the harpist-composer Nicholas Bochsa arrived in Australia via the Pacific route, with his lover, the singer Anna Bishop, on 3 December 1855 ("MADAME BISHOP", Empire (4 December 1855), 5 Copies of Bochsa's music had been advertised for sale in Launceston as early as 1834. Early Australian performances of Bochsa's music included those given by the Gautrots (songs, 1839), Joseph Reichenberg (a "concerto" for clarinet with orchestral accompaniment, 1841), John Howson, Richard and Mrs Curtis and G. F. Duly (Concertante for flute and harp, 1842; and Quartetto for harp, piano, flute, and cello, 1842, played again by Maria Prout and Julius Imberg with amateurs in 1848), and by his former pupils Maria Prout and Stephen Marsh (1842). In Sydney in November 1845, the band of the 99th regiment accompanied Marsh in "a Grand Fantasia, on the Harp, of Bochsa's (performed for the first time in the southern hemisphere), entitled, "Recollections of Wales", introducing several very favourite Welsh Airs."

Bochsa's and Bishop's Sydney programs included one recent American work by Bochsa, A characteristic Fantasia for the orchestra based on Bochsa's own "Mexican song", La Pasadita. Another recent work, and possibly a first performance, was "Bochsa's new Whimsical Overture for full Orchestra", The Past and the Present. Bochsa was reportedly already ill on arrival in Sydney, and Stephen Marsh, already engaged as piano accompanist for Bishop's Sydney concerts, took over as musical director after the first concert. Bochsa's condition worsened, and he died in Sydney shortly afterward. He was buried in the churchyard at St. Stephen's, Camperdown (now Newtown). One item of his funeral music was arranged from a tune that he had reportedly written on his deathbed.

According to the press report of his obsequies. This "dying chant" was shortly to have been published, to a specially-written English text, as Rest, great Musician, rest! But, if so, it does not survive.

After Bochsa's death, Bishop continued to perform his music in Australia, notably the Mexican "castanet" song La Bajadere, also printed locally in W. J. Johnson's Sydney Harmonicon (no copy survives, but see US edition

Early documentation in Australian sources:

"LIBEL.-BOCHSA v. FISHER AND SMITH", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (2 May 1827), 4

ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 May 1827), 4

"THE KING v. FISHER AND ANOTHER", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 May 1827), 4

"THE PRESS AND THE LAW OF LIBEL", The Monitor (8 June 1827), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Advertiser (11 September 1834), 1

"ELOPEMENT", Australasian Chronicle (6 December 1839), 4

[Advertisement], Australasian Chronicle (10 December 1839), 3

"MORI AND BOCHSA BECOME ITINERANT MUSIC-MONGERS", The Sydney Monitor (24 January 1840), 4

"A FRENCHMAN", The Courier (28 May 1841), 4

[Advertisement], The Australian (31 August 1841), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 June 1853), 1 

... TUESDAY EVENING, JUNE 20, Under distinguished Patronage. MADAME DE STORR, Harpist, Pupil of Signor Bochsa, begs to notify to the gentry of Sydney and its environs that she purposes giving a Grand Evening Concert at the Royal Victoria Theatre ...

Bochsa in Australia:

[Advertisement], Empire (22 December 1855), 1

[Advertisement]: "SYDNEY HARMONICON", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 February 1856), 9

"THE SYDNEY HARMONICON", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 February 1856), 5

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (29 December 1855), 3

"PRINCE OF WALES THEATRE", Empire (3 January 1856), 4


"DEATH AND OBSEQUIES OF THE LATE M. BOCHSA", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1856), 4

... Bochsa, three days before his death, also compose[d] a mournful refrain ... Madame Bishop was struck with the solemnity and appropriateness of the air ... Accordingly, the Latin Requiem from the Catholic Ritual was adapted by Mr. Frank Howson, and harmonised in four parts by Mr. Paling ...  The dying chaunt will shortly be published, the following stanzas having been written thereto [prints text]

"DEATH OF CHEVALIER BOCHSA", Bell's Life in Sydney (12 January 1856), 2

"THE LATE CHEVALIER BOCHSA", Empire (9 January 1856), 5

[Letter from Stephen Marsh, Sydney]:"THE LATE BOCHSA", The Musical World (24 May 1856), 326

Bochsa's grave, St Stephen's Churchyard, Newtown


Bochsa's gravestone in the cemetery, St. Stephen's Church, Newtown, is near the (liturgical) west door of the church; see also "Monument in memory of N. C. Bochsa, erected by Anna Bishop over his grave in Camperdown Cemetery, 1856"

Bibliography and resources:

E. J. Lea-Scarlett, "Bochsa, Robert Nicholas Charles (1789-1856)", Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

Richard Davis, Anna Bishop: the intrepid prima donna (Sydney: Currency Press, 1997)

Rosemary Margaret Hallo, Erard, Bochsa and their impact on harp music-making in Australia (1830-1866): an early history from documents (Ph.D thesis, University of Adelaide, 2014) (DIGITISED)

BOCK, Thomas

Viola (tenor) player, amateur vocalist, artist

Born Sutton Coldfield, England, c.1790
Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 19 January 1824 (per Asia)
Died Hobart, 18 March 1855, in the 65th year of his age (NLA persistent identifier)


"ST. GEORGE'S DAY", The Hobart Town Courier (25 April 1829), 2

"VAN DIEMAN'S LAND NEWS. MR. DEANE'S CONCERT", The Sydney Monitor (2 October 1830), 4

The concert commenced with a grand symphony my Stamity [Stamitz]. Mr. Deane presided very ably at the violin, Messrs. Brown and Williams (master of the Band of the 63rd) seconds., Mr. Bock and Master Deane (a young gentleman only ten years old) tenors, Mr. Hoffer, a violoncello, and two horns by excellent performers of the 63rd Band. This beautiful symphony was performed with the greatest effect, and received with the warmest applause. ... Bishop's beautiful glee "The Foresters" was then sung most admirably by Messrs. Pemfriest, Bock, Marshall, and Lanford. ... Bishop's glee, "Beam of Light," then followed by Miss Ludgater, Messrs. Deane, Bock, and Langford. ... The first act closed with a piece from Hayden, by the whole of the performers, and the second act opened with another piece of that celebrated master. Mr. Bock then sang with great taste Wade's "Ding dong bell" which was followed by the celebrated glee "The last rose Summer," by Miss Ludgater, Messrs. Deane, Marshall, and Bock ... A beautiful Quartetto from Haydn then followed, by Mr. Deane the Violin, Mr. Marshall the Flute, Mr. Bock the Tenor, and Mr. Hoffer the Violoncello. It was admirably executed.

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (28 September 1831), 1

"DEATH", The Courier (19 March 1855), 2

Bibliography and resources:

BOEHM, Traugott Wilhelm

School teacher, music teacher

Born Brandenburg, Germany, 18 October 1836
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 2 January 1839 (per Zebra)
Active Adelaide, by 1867s
Died Warracknabeal, VIC, 12 May 1917


[News], Chronicle (27 January 1906), 37

About fifty years ago Mr. T. W. Boehm taught young men in the village of Hahndorf, situated among the hills about 17 miles east of Adelaide. Many of his old pupils hold prominent positions throughout, the State, and at a gathering of the Hahndorf Old Boys' Association on Monday evening a letter was read from Mr. Boehm, who is now in Victoria, in which he ex pressed the view that nations whose school masters and pedagogues ranked highest would always take the lead in civilisation and politics. It was really the schoolmaster who gained the great battles on land and sea in the late war in the East. It was a war between intelligence and ignorance. Pedagogues on both sides of the British Channel predicted the result of that war with unerring certainty. To see the greatest strong hold of tyranny and despotism on earth humiliated - Shaken to its very foundations - was the most gratifying event to the teacher and philanthropist which had happened in modern times. Mr. Boehm is about 73 years of age, and is a music teacher at Warracknabeal.

"T. W. Boehm and Hahndorf", The Advertiser (12 April 1935), 27

Resources and Bibliography and resources:

Suzanne Edgar, "Boehm, Traugott Wilhelm (1836-1917)", Australian dictionary of biography 7 (1979):


Soprano vocalist

Born Nizbor, Bohemia, 1843
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, December 1879
Died South Yarra, VIC, 16 March 1922, gabriella



Boema arrived in Australia in Melbourne in December 1879 (from a tour to Batavia). She made her official first public appearance in Australia in Melbourne, on 10 January 1880, billed as "Prima Donna Drammatica Assoluta from the Imperial Theatre of Moscow, La Scala of Milano, Pagliano Florence &c.", as an associate artist with violinist Camilla Urso. She and he husband Raffaele Steffani were away from Australia again from November 1883. She made a second tour of the United States (she had first performed there in the mid-1860s), but she had returned to Melbourne by December 1885. She was a principal vocalist for Frederic Cowen in the orchestral concert series at the Melbourne Centennial Exhibition in 1888.


"ARRIVALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 October 1879), 4

[News], The Argus (15 December 1879), 5

We were favoured on Saturday afternoon by hearing a new singer who gave a private exhibition of her powers as a vocalist before a select circle in Messrs. Nicholson and Ascherberg's rooms m Collins street. Signora Gabriella Boema comes to Australia by way of India and the East, bringing with her a well won continental reputation as an operatic prima donna. Her performances on Saturday afternoon were in every way satisfactory, and showed her to advantage as an artist well adapted to the concert platform. The following were the selections she sang, namely - 1. "Non Torno" (Italian), by Mattei, song, accompanied by Alfred Plumpton; 2. "Am Meere" (German) by Schubert, song, accompanied by Julius Herz; 3.  "Frühlingslied (German), by Mendelssohn, song, accompanied by Julius Herz, and [4] "Ritorno vincitor (Italian), by Verdi, from the opera "Aida", grand scena, accompanied by Alfred Plumpton. In these selections Signora Boema displayed the possession of a soprano voice of an attractive quality, and an artistic method in using it which met with general approval. Her tones are of a clear and ringing quality, not wholly free from vibration. They evince quick sensibility on the part of the singer, and are very sympathetic in effect. Her delivery is easy and her pronunciation clear. She produces the effect of force without exertion, and exercises a genuine control over her hearers even in the very finest shades of expression, and she was equally successful in each of the above named selections, which were sufficiently varied to form a comprehensive test. When the opportunity occurs Signora Boema will be heard by the public with pleasure.

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 January 1880), 8

"CLEARED OUT", The Argus (3 November 1883), 8

"DEATHS", The Argus (28 March 1822), 1

"PERSONAL", The Argus (29 March 1922), 10

The death last week of Madame Boema Steffani at her home in South Yarra revives memories of one who a generation ago was held in high esteem in Melbourne as a dramatic soprano. Born in Prague, Bohemia, in 1843, Madame Boema, to use her stage name, came to Australia with her parents in November, 1879, after a tour of Java, Manila, and the East, with an operatic and concert company organised by her husband, M. Steffani, who survives her. On her arrival in Melbourne Madame Boema accepted an engagement with Mr. W. S. Lister, the impressario [sic], and appeared in several operas. She sang with Trebelli, mother of Antonia Dolores, and Julia Coy, mother of Signorina Coy, in "Don Giovanni", "L'Africaine", "Norma", and "Les Huguenots". The operatic season in Melbourne was not of long duration, and Mme. Boema began teaching, in which she gained immediate success. She afterwards accepted a position, on the teaching staff of the University Conservatorium, and was a singer in St. Patrick's Cathedral. Her remains were interred in the Kew Cemetery.

"DEATH OF MME. STEFFANI", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 March 1922), 7

Bibliography and resources:

Stockigt 2003

J. Lukeš, "La Boema - kdo te je", Nizborsky List 3 (September 2009), 7-8

BOESEN, Teresa (Madame BOESEN; Mrs. Theo BOESEN; formerly Miss CURTIS; Mrs. John MEILLON)

Pianist, pupil of Boulanger, piano teacher

Go to main page Harry Parsons and his Curtis family descendents 

BOGLE, John Joseph

Musician, professor of music

Born c.1837
Active Sydney, NSW, ? 1857
Died Morriset, NSW, 1 July 1932, aged 95


John Joseph Bogle was the eldest son of Andrew Bogle, senior (d.1877), and his first wife, Elizabeth Young. Andrew was a former Jamaican slave and later witness in the Tichborne trials; after retiring from service in England to the Tichborne-Doughty family, Andrew emigrated to Sydney, c.1854-55, with his second wife. John had been apprenticed to a chemist in Nottingham, with the help of the Tichbornes, but the arrangement was not a success and he had to be bought out of his apprenticeship. He was sent out to join his father in Australia in 1855. The family settled in Balmain where Bogles remained prominent citizens after Andrew senior returned to England.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 November 1868), 1

"The Tichborne Trial", Evening News (23 January 1874), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 October 1879), 1

WOULD Mr. BOGLE, Musician, Balmain, send his address to Mrs. MONTGOMERY, 149, Castlereagh-street.

"The Flag of the South", Freeman's Journal (5 March 1892), 16

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 July 1932), 10

"MR. J. J. BOGLE", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 July 1932), 10

Mr. John Joseph Bogle, who died at Lake Macquarie recently, at the age of 95 years, was born on the Tichbourne Estates, Upton House, near Pool, Dorset (England). He was apprenticed to a London chemist and qualified for his certificate. At the same time he studied music, and became an accomplished pianist. When 20 years of age he came to Sydney, and was employed by Dr. Elliott, founder of the present firm of Elliott Bros., Ltd. For about 20 years he was church organist and choirmaster at St. Augustine's, Balmain. He also composed music for the words of the poem, "The Flag of the South," by E. J. Brady.

Bibliography and resources:

Joy Lumsden, "The true and remarkable history of Andrew Bogle", Jamaican Historical Society Bulletin 11/4 (October 1999) 

BOLEY, Dorrel Fair (Dan F. BOLEY, D. F. BOLEY)

Minstrel, serenader, banjo-player, bass vocalist, musical director

Arrived Sydney, 23 October 1855 (per Vaquero, from Honolulu, 3 September),
Died at sea (drowned), 1862


"ARRIVALS, The Shipping Gazette and Sydney General Trade List (29 October 1855), 242

"COPPIN'S OLYMPIC", The Argus (17 December 1855), 5

Messrs. Campbell, Barker, and Boley are the principal solo vocalists, and all possess splendid voices, the first named having an organ of great compass, which he manages with the most exquisite taste. Mr. Barker's voice, a fine tenor, is heard to great advantage in some of the ballads which he sings, and Mr. Boley is a basso profondo of great power and volume. Messrs Morgan and Porter are skilful accompanyists and clever actors, and Mr. Abbott is a violinist of superior ability, besides being in every respect an accomplished musician.

"THE SERENADERS", Bathurst Free Press and Mining Journal (3 January 1857), 2

THE SERENADERS. A night spent in listening to the performances of the company of serenaders now performing at the Prince of Wales Theatre, on a professional tour, has very favorably impressed us with their musical capabilities. Mr. Boley's deep, rich bass, which he wields with considerable ease and flexibility, first strikes the ear of the listener as the swells and cadences of the chorus enrapture the soul with their melody. Mr. Brower is a capital baritone, and sings well. His "Poor Dog Tray," on Thursday evening, was a gem. Mr. Boley's "Good old Jeff" was given with good taste, was beautifully emphasised, and the chorus was a delicious piece of music.

"MARRIAGE", Empire (15 October 1857), 4

MARRIAGE. On Tuesday, October 13th, at the Wesleyan Chapel, Princes-street, by the Rev. William Hessel, Wesleyan Minister, Mr. Dorrel Fair Boley, to Miss Matilda Watkins, both of Sydney.

"MELANCHOLY FATE OF THE BOLEY MINSTRELS", Examiner (12 August 1862), 4 

MELANCHOLY FATE OF THE BOLEY MINSTRELS. Most of the habitues of the concert halls of Melbourne will remember Boley's Minstrels," who about twelve months since left Australia on a professional visit to Mauritius. After playing a far from successful engagement at Port Louis, they embarked on board a Schooner for the Cape of Good Hope, and we regret to add, were wrecked off Cape St. Mary. The passengers, including the troupe, and Mrs. Boley and children, were fourteen in number, and have all perished, with the exception of Mr. Robson, who with three sailors succeeded in returning to Port Louis ... - Bell's Life in Victoria.


We met by chance (ballad, composed by Kucken; arranged and sung (with the original Tyrolienne) by D. F. Boley) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1857]) 

Bibliography and resources:


Boley's Minstrels were organized by D. F. Boley, and left Australia in January, 1862, on a visit to the Mauritius Islands. After a not very successful engagement they embarked for the Cape of Good Hope, but were wrecked off Cape St. Mary late in 1862. Mr. and Mrs. Boley and the children were lost, as was the entire troupe, a Mr. Robson being the only one saved from drowning. George W. Demerest, Chas. L. Grew, W. White Lee, W. Robson and Totten Arent were in the company. Dan F. Boley was one of the original Backus Minstrels. He was a fine banjoist and his deep sonorous, bass voice will be recollected with mingled feelings of regret and pleasure. In 1855 he, in company with Backus, Burbank and others, re-organised the Backus Minstrels and made a trip to Australia. After a time all except Boley returned, but he married a wealthy widow and remained there.


Professor of music (Society of Arts)

Active Sydney, NSW, 1854


[Advertisement], Empire (30 October 1854), 1 

"CONCERT OF THE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", Empire (28 December 1854), 4

... A party of amateurs, under the direction of Mr. Bolton, the Professor of Music at the Society of Arts, sang two German glees with great taste and feeling. These gentlemen, by dint of much practice together, have acquired that ensemble that is so necessary in glee singing. Their voices harmonise admirably, and they pay attention to the expression sought to be conveyed by the music ...

"MECHANICS' SCHOOL OF ARTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 December 1855), 3 

... During the evening several glees were sung - most of them German. All were well received, but there was a strong partiality shown to the "Model British glee" - "by Celia's Arbour" - the singers being Messrs. Colley, Fisher, Walcott, and J. Bolton.

BOLTON, Robert Thorley


Born c. 1831
Active Maitland, NSW, 1861
Died (drowned), Morpeth, NSW, 1 April 1864, aged 33


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 April 1861), 1

... March, March, Keep Yourselves Ready Boys - Dr. Bolton of Maitland - Australian Patriotic Song ...

BONNAR, Charles Fawcett (BONNER)

Vocalist, guitarist

Born Scotland, 1811
Arrived Sydney, 17 November 1834 (per James from London)
Died Adelaide, 5 February 1848, aged 37 years


Charles Bonnar, bookbinder, arrived in Sydney in November 1834. In Maria Taylor's concert in March 1835 he accompanied himself on the guitar singing a Scotch song and The guitar of Spain. Having worked as a compositor for The Colonist, The Monitor, and The Herald, "Mr. C. F. Bonnar, Compositor" departed for South Australia on the Hope on 26 January 1838, and by May was "Stage and Acting Manager" at the new Theatre Royal, Adelaide.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (15 December 1834), 1

"CONCERT", The Sydney Monitor (17 December 1834), 3

'Mr. Lewis's Concert", The Sydney Monitor (20 December 1834), 2

[Advertisement], The Australian (20 March 1835), 3

"DEPARTURES", The Colonist (27 January 1838), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian Gazette (19 May 1838), 2

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (26 July 1838), 2

"Deaths", The Maitland Mercury (19 July 1848), 3



Active Hobart, 1852


"New Organist", The Cornwall Chronicle (24 April 1852), 260

[Advertisement]: "TO THE CONGREGATION OF ST. DAVID'S", The Courier (11 September 1852), 1

"[Advertisement]: "To the Editor", The Courier (25 September 1852), 4


New Zealand musician, composer, violinist, music retailer

Born c.1830
Arrived New Zealand, before 1852
Died 1883


One work by Bonnington, The Emmeline polkas was published in London in 1849 [date from BL catalogue]; he was a "music master" near Nelson in New Zealand by 1852. He published at least two works in Australia.


Nelson Examiner and New Zealand Chronicle (7 February 1852), 4

LIST of PERSONS qualified to serve as JURORS, in the District of NELSON, New Zealand, for the Year 1852-53: ... Bonnington, Joseph, Waimea east, shoemaker; Bonnington, Charles, Welwyn place, music master

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 April 1853), 1

NEW PUBLICATION. In a few days, The Georgiana Polka, by M. C. Bonnington

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 March 1860), 2s

SOUTHERN CROSS SCHOTTISCHE, beautifully illustrated, just published, price 2s. Joseph Wilkie, 16 Collins-street.

[Advertisement], Taranaki Herald (4 May 1861), 2

The Band of H.M. 57th Regiment .... PROGRAMME ... Schottische ... The Southern Cross ... Bonnington"

[Advertisement], Manawatu Herald (22 June 1880), 4

For an NZ music print sold from Bonnington's premises, see

Bibliography and resources:

John Mansfield Thomson (ed.), The Oxford history of New Zealand music, 45, 48

... Charles Bonnington had a music shop and music rooms in Cathedral Square and composed popular pieces ... [at Nelson] A short-lived Philharmonic Society, conducted by Charles Bonnington, arose in 1852"

Edmund Bohan, Blest madman: Fitzgerald of Canterbury (Canterbury: Canterbury University Press, 1998), 300

Fanny herself sang, "in admirable style", Regret with the accomplished Charles Bonnington's violin obligato.

Musical works:

The Emmeline polkas for the P.Forte, by Charles Bonnington (London, [1849]), BL  Music Collections h.943.(37.)

The Georgiana polka ("dedicated to Miss Richmond of Nelson, New Zealand") ([Sydney: Woolcott & Clarke, 1853]) NO COPY IDENTIFIED

Southern Alps schottische ("Respectfully dedicated to W. M. Stanton, Esq. Nelson") ([?; ?])

Southern Cross schottische ([Melbourne: Joseph Wilkie, 1860]); copy at London, British Library, Music Collections h.1485.c.(24.)


Historian, Indigenous music and culture reporter

Born Lingfield, Surrey, England, 8 July 1817
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 10 October 1841
Died Soutwick, Sussex, England, 6 February 1906 (NLA persistent identifier)



Singing master, musician, music educator, composer

Born Southwark, England, 21 November 1824
Arrived Melbourne, by early 1855
Died Fitzroy, VIC, 13 September 1883, aged 58 years (NLA persistent identifier)


Pianist, composer

Born ?
Died Toowoomba, QLD, 4 August 1882, aged 19


Brother of the journalist and historian James Bonwick, Walter was senior singing master for Victorian public schools from 1855 until his death in 1883. As a composer he published both in his own right and in collaboration with George Weinritter. His son, Arthur, a pupil of Guenett, died aged 19 in 1882.

1882: WE often travel abroad to hear news. I find that a Victorian composer has written an original theme, with variations, for the piano. His name is Mr. Arthur Bonwick, and he holds a diploma of the Victorian Musical Association. The Musical Standard in reviewing this composition says:- "The theme is a touching bit of pure melody, judiciously clothed in natural harmonics... . The composer is a gifted young Australian, afflicted, it is feared, with a serious consumptive tendency, and the piece gains in its touching expression from the fact that the pen of its composer may, alas! soon be laid aside."

Obituary (1883): The death of Mr. Walter Bonwick, senior singing master, has deprived the Educution department of an old und valued oflicer. He was employed as instructor of singing under the National Board of Education as far back as 1851 [?], and when the two boards - the national and denominational - were merged in the department of Public Instruction his services were retained. He brought high qualifications and a zealous spirit to bear upon his work, which has produced valuable fruit. He was, it may be said, not only an instructor but a composer. His musical writings included several books of songs for children, which were extensively used in the public schools. He was for many years organist of Christ Church, Hawthorn, where he resided until recently ...."


[Advertisement]: "MR. WALTER BONWICK'S EASY AND PROGRESSIVE SONGS", The Argus (11 July 1857), 5

[News], The Argus (20 April 1880), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (5 August 1882), 1

"MUSICAL ECHOES", The Brisbane Courier (2 September 1882), 7

"Deaths", The Argus (14 September 1883), 1

[News], The Argus (15 September 1883), 9

Bibliography and resources:

Guy Featherstone, Bonwick, James (1817-1906), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

Beverley Maclellan, Walter Bonwick (1824-1883): Walter Bonwick and the establishment of music teaching in the national schools of Victoria, 1855-1856 (M.Ed thesis, University of Melbourne, 1990)

Beverley Maclellan, Walter Bonwick and the place of music in the curriculum of the national, common and state schools, 1854-1883 (Ph.D thesis, University of Melbourne, 1996);

Beverley Maclellan, The brothers Bonwick ([Melbourne]: Author, 1996)

Musical works:

The Irish peasant girl ("The new ballad ... Sung with great applause by Madame Anna Bishop") (Melbourne: W.H. Williams for the benefit of the Benevolent Asylum, [1856])

In memory of thee (song; words: Mrs. Alex. Newton) (originally published in The Illustrated Journal of Australasia 3/13 (July 1857); here as reprinted in Williams's Musical Annual and Australian Skecthbook for 1858 (Melbourne: W. H. Williams, 1858), 21-23)

With George Weinritter, Thirty-three easy songs ("in two or more parts (principally original): compiled for the use of the Australian youth") (Melbourne: W. H. Williams, 1858)

The Australian school song book (containing sixty-six original songs composed by Walter Bonwick) (Melbourne: Clarson, Massina, 1871)

BOOM, Richard William

Professor of music, cricketer, bandmaster (brass band, Boom's Quadrilles Band, Prahran State School fife and drum band), flautist

Born Launceston, TAS, 1840
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1868
Died Prahran, VIC, 1898


"MARRIAGES", The Argus (8 January 1868), 4

"SOUTHERN V. RICHMOND", The Argus (13 November 1871), 6

"LICENSED VICTUALLERS' ASYLUM", The Argus (29 October 1875), 6

"SERVICE OF SONG IN THE TOWN HALL", The Telegraph, St. Kilda, Prahran and South Yarra Guardian (15 July 1882), 5

"Local News", The Telegraph, St. Kilda, Prahran and South Yarra Guardian (7 October 1882), 4

A movement has been initiated amongst the pupils attending the Malvern-road State School ... to collect a sufficient amount with which to establish a fife and drum band. With the pronounced proclivities of young Australians, there need be no fear as to the success of the band; and if under the guidance of an experienced bandmaster like Mr. Boom, there is reason why there should not be, at no distant time, a band contest between the St. Kilda and Prahran bands. 

[News], The Argus (24 November 1883), 8

BOOTH, William

Bandsman, Band of the 3rd Regiment (Buffs)

Active NSW, 1823-27 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


London, National Archives, PRO, WO12/2118: 3rd Regiment of Foot (Buffs) payrolls 1824-26; microfilm copy at SL-NSW: PRO Reel 3695


Band of the 3rd Regiment (Buffs)

BORSOTTI, Paolo (Signor; Pablo)

Bass vocalist

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 7 December 1855 (per Melbourne, from Concepción, Peru, 12 September)


Paolo Borsotti, "from the Italian Opera Lima and Valparaiso" made his first Australian appearance on 7 January 1856 at Melbourne's Theatre Royal, part of Lewis Lavenu's opera season in which, with Clarisse Cailly, Sarah Flower, Maria Carandini, Mons. Barre, and Emile Coulon, he starred in Donizetti's Don Pasquale and Daughter of the regiment, Rossini's The Barber of Seville, and Bellini's Norma. In February he made his Melbourne concert debut with Elizabeth Testar, Miska Hauser, and pianist Emilie Smith. In June 1857, on a bill with Anna Bishop, Borsotti was reportedly suffering some infirmity, though was last billed in Melbourne to appear that month with Bishop as Dr. Dulcamara in the local premiere of Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore. He reappeared briefly in Sydney in June 1858, advertising in the Herald: "SlGNOR BORSOTTI, First Bass Singer, from the Italian Opera, Milan, Paris, Madrid, London, America, and Melbourne, and Just arrived." I have as yet found no reference at all to Borsotti outside Australia.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Argus (8 December 1855), 4

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (31 December 1855), 5

"THEATRICAL AND MUSICAL", The Argus (9 January 1856), 5

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (9 January 1856), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (9 January 1856), 8

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (10 January 1856), 5

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (15 January 1856), 5

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Argus (31 January 1856), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 February 1856), 8

"M. LAGLAISE'S BENEFIT", The Argus (5 June 1857), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (11 June 1857), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 June 1858), 1

BORTON, Jane Elizabeth (Miss BORTON, Miss J. E. BORTON; Jane Elizabeth BORTON; Mrs. George WICKHAM)

Amateur musician

Born ? Sydney, c.1833
Married George Wickham, St. James's, Sydney, 5 August 1857
Died Surry Hills, NSW, 11 November 1866, aged 33


"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 August 1857), 1 

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 November 1866), 7 


3 owner bound albums of sheer music (vols. 2-4); "Miss J. E. Borton"; MS inscription: "Miss Jane Elizabeth Borton", on titlepages of several scores, some with date; most scores published in Sydney or London; State Library of New South Wales 

BOSTOCK, John Arthur

Organ builder, convict

Arrived, 13 February 1832 (per Asia, from England, 29 September 1831)
Died ? Liverpool, NSW, 1871, aged 70


When assigned as a servant on arrival in Sydney, Bostock was described as "organ builder and gardener". In January 1840, after the conclusion of his 7 year sentence, the Sydney organ builder John Kinloch advertised: IF JOHN AUTHER [sic] BOSTOCK, who eight years ago was in the employment of Renn and Boston, Organ Builders, Manchester, will apply to Mr. John Kinlock [sic], Organ Builder, Prince-street, Sydney ... he will hear of something to his advantage."


"Arrivals", The Sydney Monitor (18 February 1832), 4

"RETURN OF CONVICTS ASSIGNED", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 June 1832), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (24 January 1840), 3

Related material:

"The Convict's Burial. Written on board the Asia Prison Ship on her passage to New South Wales (from the East India Magazine)", The Australian (8 June 1832), 4


Organist (St. Peter's, Melbourne)

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1858


[Advertisement], The Age (27 April 1858), 1


On Tuesday evening the whole of the first, and the greater portion of the second parts of Haydn's "Creation," with selections from the works of Handel, Mendelssohn, and Beethoven, were performed in this church, in connection with the opening of an organ erected therein by Mr. Biggs, organ builder, Little Lonsdale street ... The organ, ably played by Mr. Boswell, organist of St. Peter's, is small but powerful, and its tone of excellent quality. The attendance was numerous, but not crowded. The receipts will scarcely clear the instrument from debt.


Jesse Biggs

BOSWELL, Annabella Alexandra Campbell (INNES; Mrs. Patrick BOWSELL)

Diarist, memoirist

Born Yarrows, near Bathurst, NSW, 26 September 1826
Departed NSW, 1865 (for Scotland) Died Scotland, 25 October 1916 (NLA persistent identifier) (NLA persistent identifier)


"A JOURNAL OF EARLY AUSTRALIA", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 August 1911), 5

Bibliography and resources:

Boswell 1890 (DIGITISED)

Boswell 1911a (? Boswell 1908) (DIGITISED)

Boswell 1911b


Ngaire M. Souter, "Boswell, Annabella Alexandrina Campbell (1826-1914)", Australian Dictionary of Biography supplement (2005)


Musician, composer, music publisher, music retailer, music teacher

Born Nottingham, England, 1858
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1883 (per Austral, from England)
Departed Australia, 1898, for New Zealand
Died Auckland, NZ, 3 August 1905


Music teacher, vocalist


1888-10-08: We have a very efficient addition to the list of local composers in Mr. T. H. Bosworth, who, in addition to some sacred music, has just published a new waltz called, "The Beautiful South Esk." The melody is very taking, and, the accompaniment, though simple, has a suggestive cadence which harmonises well with the title. Altogether, it is likely to be very popular, and do credit to the rising reputation of the composer.

1894-09-22: CAMDEN, Sept. 13. In Camden last night the local Philharmonic Society, assisted by the Picton Philharmonic Society, successfully rendered "The Merrie Men of Sherwood Forest" before a very large audience. Mr. T. H. Bosworth conducted.

1895-11-07: Since the arrival in our midst of Mr. T H. Bosworth some three years ago, music has undoubtedly made rapid strides. The Camden, Picton and Menangle Philharmonic Societies have been formed, for all of which Mr. Bosworth is engaged as conductor, and the excellent programmes put forth at the various concerts have cultivated a taste for high class music hitherto almost unknown ...

1898-05-03: T. H. Bosworth, Piano, Organ, & General Musical Instrument Depot KARANGAHAPE ROAD, AUCKLAND PIANOS, ORGANS, ET[C] by the best Makers for Cash or on easy terns of Purchase. Every Description of Music, Instrument Fittings, etc., in Stock. Mr.Bosworth was elected Juror for a Musical Instruments at the late International Exhibition, Launceston, Tasmania and has had 23 years London and Colonial experience in the Piano and Music Trade. Instruments bought or exchanged.


[Advertisement], Wagga Wagga Advertiser (10 May 1887), 3

[Advertisement], Daily Telegraph (Launceston) (16 August 1887), 1

"LAUNCESTON", The Mercury (8 October 1888), 3

"CUCKOO CLUB CONCERT", Launceston Examiner (6 December 1888), 3

CONCERT AT INVERMAY, Daily Telegraph (19 December 1889), 3

[Advertisement], Camden News (20 June 1895), 5

"Camden Philharmonic Society", Camden News (8 August 1895), 6

"Music in Camden and District", Camden News (7 November 1895), 1

[Advertisement], Thames Star (3 May 1898), 4

"WEBER'S MASS AT THE SACRED HEART", Auckland Star (27 November 1899), 2

"MUSICAL JOTTINGS", Examiner (13 January 1900), 3

"CONCERT AT THE SACRED HEART", Auckland Star (22 May 1900), 2

"CONCERT AT THE ASYLUM", Auckland Star (14 September 1900), 3

"DEATH OF MR. T. H. BOSWORTH", Waikato Times (8 July 1905), 2

DEATH OF MR T. H. BOSWORTH. It is our sad duty to record the death of our fellow townsman, Mr T. H. Bosworth. who passed away at his residence early this morning. Mr. Bosworth has been a sufferer from a chronic heart complaint for some time, and his demise was not altogether unlooked for, although it was not thought the end was so near. About three years ago Mr Bosworth came to Hamilton after having spent some time previously at Cambridge, whither he came after relinquishing a musical supply business which he had carried on for some years in Auckland. Mr Bosworth's musical abilities were of no mean order, and among other positions he occupied was a seat on the commission of the Tasmanian Exhibition in the musical class some years ago. He was for some time before his death the local secretary of the Trinity College, London. As a musician and a teacher of music, he had great talent, and his services were frequently requisitioned throughout the Waikato, and his assistance to deserving objects was readily given. For the last few months he had also been engaged in business as the proprietor of a music warehouse and shop. He was also an enthusiastic and successful poultry breeder, and the Hamilton Bowling Club loses in him a valued member. The news of his death comes as a painful surprise to those who knew him, as he was seen going about his business yesterday, pretty much as usual. He leaves a widow and one little daughter, both of whom are well-known and much appreciated in musical circles. We sincerely join in the general sympathy which is felt for them in their bereavement. The funeral will take place tomorrow at 2.30 p.m.

"TRINITY COLLEGE EXAMINATION", Waikato Times (15 September 1905), 3


Cyclopedia of New Zealand volume 2, Auckland provincial district (1902), 259

Bosworth, Tom Henry, Teacher of Music, Ponsonby Road, Auckland. Born in Nottingham in 1858, he was educated at the local high school, and studied music under Dr. Briggs, the celebrated Henry Houseley, Fellow of the College of Organists, and subsequently under Heinrich Kohler. The subject of this notice came out to Melbourne, Victoria, in the ship "Austral" in 1883. Removing to the New South Wales capital shortly afterwards, he learned the 'cello from Mr. Edward Straus, one of Sydney's famous musicians. Mr. Bosworth is next found in Albury, where he practised his profession for three years, and made a good connection. In 1887 he went to Launceston, and seven years later to Sydney, establishing a practice in the suburbs. He was for three years conductor to the Picton and Camden Philharmonic Societies. Mr. Bosworth emigrated to Auckland, New Zealand, towards the end of 1896, for climatic benefits, and shortly after his arrival was appointed conductor of the newly formed Grafton Orchestral Union, and of St. Benedict's choir. He is a composer of no mean degree, "The Beautiful South Esk Waltz," which has reached its fourth edition, and "The Military Waltz," being among his compositions. The latter was, at the special request of Messrs. Boosey and Co., London, published in their "Military Band Journal." This is, in itself, quite sufficient to guarantee a large circulation of Mr. Bosworth's compositions. He is also the composer of many songs, several sacred solos, and a quartet for stringed instruments. Mr. Bosworth is a dog fancier, and has for some years past been a successful breeder of prize collies.

Musical works:

The beautiful South Esk Waltz (Second edition. Performed with great success by the Military Bands at the Melbourne Centennial Exhibition)

Exhibition waltz (Fourth edition. 1st January, 1897; By the same composer, The beautiful South Esk waltz, The military waltz, The Corra Linn gavotte etc. etc.) (Launceston: T. H. Bosworth, 1897)


Violinist, musician

Active Melbourne, 1850

1850-07-05: John Bott (musician). I was at the Angel Inn playing the violin on the night of the 24th June last; the landlord employed me so to act ...

Documentation: THE LATE MURDER, The Argus (5 July 1850), 2


Songwriter, comedian, journalist

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 18 July 1840 (per Theresa, from London via Plymouth 24 March)
Died Sydney, NSW, 21 July 1894, aged 76



Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1893


[Advertisement], Port Phillip Patriot and Melbourne Advertiser (24 February 1842), 3 

"To the Editor", The Melbourne Argus (16 February 1847), 3

"THE DINNER", South Australian (3 May 1850), 3

Mr. Ellard was then called on for a song. He sang one which was encored but instead of repeating it, he gave one, called "The Irish dragoon". Certainly we heard nothing in it of an obscene or improper character, but we were at the top of the room and the singer at the bottom ; those near him describe it as one of a most unfit kind to be introduced in decent society, and his lordship, who before the song, had risen to go, leaving the room when it was concluded, considerable excitement was the consequence; indeed, from the time of the first interruption order had not been fully restored.

"LOCAL NEWS", South Australian (7 May 1850), 2

"SOUTH AUSTRALIA", The Argus (15 May 1850), 2

Mr. F. Ellard, the musician, who was formerly in this province, appears to have given great offence, by singing an indecent song at the dinner of the St. Patrick's Society, in the presence of the Roman Catholic Bishop. Mr. Ellard denies the soft impeachment, and states that the song was written by his esteemed friend Arthur Leslie Boucicault [Boursiquot], brother of Dion Boucicault , of London, the author. This Monsieur Leslie Boucicault is also an old Port Phillipian, and will be recollected by many here.

[News], The Argus (3 August 1893), 4

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 July 1894), 1

"AUSTRALIANS ABROAD", The Brisbane Courier (1 March 1906), 2

Bibliography and resources:

BOULANGER, Edward Desiree


See main entry

Edward and Kate Boulanger

BOULLEMIER (? Anthony)


Active Melbourne, December 1852
? Died Maryborough, 29 August 1865


[Advertisement], The Argus (10 December 1852), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 October 1865), 7

BOULT, Arthur

Organist, choirmaster

Born Manchester, 1850/1
Arrived Melbourne, 23 April 1873 (per Yorkshire, from London, via Plymouth, 29 January)
Departed for New Zealand, 1893
Died Auckland, New Zealand, 21 September 1926, aged 75

1884: In a special piece of correspondence headed "Cathedral Music in Australia," in a recent Globe, the writer puts Adelaide at the top of the tree. He gives the most unqualified praise to Mr. Boult for his excellent training and management of the choir, and as an evidence of it he mentions certain historical nine practices in one week for the Lent music of this year, and Arthur Everard's singing "Oh, rest in the Lord." In a comparison of intercolonial cathedral music to a South Australian, who knows that while cathedral music has always been carefully fostered in Adelaide, and that it has received little or no encouragement in most other dioceses, however much the comparison may be in favour of Adelaide, it is not worth so much as a complimentary comparison with the old and richly-endowed cathedrals of England. The recent visitor declares Adelaide music to be fast in the footsteps of St. Paul's in London, and that the musical part of the service in the Adelaide Cathedral has reached to a great state of perfection, which fairly places it in the front rank with some of our most noted cathedrals at home. 

Charles Halle (Adelaide, 18 August 1890): In the evening we went to hear the Cathedral choir and they sing really well and have beautiful voices. Afterwards we had supper with Mr. Arthur Boult, who has taught the choir; he hails from Manchester; his father was one of the directors of the Concert Hall in 1849, and I believe one of the members of the first committee of the Classical Chamber Music Society.

1902: Boult, Arthur, Professor of Music, Auckland. This gentleman is well known throughout Australasia, more especially in Adelaide, where he resided for about twenty years. Owing to ill-health, he was advised to visit Rotorua, and having done so he decided to settle in Auckland. Mr. Boult was born at Manchester in 1851, and is the eldest son of Mr. Arthur Boult, of the firm of Messrs Wrigley, Son and Boult, paper manufacturers, of Manchester and Bury. He was partly educated at Tower school, Cheshire. At a very early age he evinced a decided musical taste, and studied under Drs. Percival and Mathias Field, of Liverpool. In 1876 Mr. Boult was appointed organist to the Adelaide Cathedral, and he held that post for nearly sixteen years, during which the choir obtained the premier position in Australasia. Mr. Boult was the founder of the Adelaide Philharmonic Society and of the Adelaide Stringed Quartet Club. By his letters in the press and other exertions he also succeeded in initiating a chair of music in the Adelaide University, and for some years he held a position on the Board of Musical Studies. In 1880 Mr. Boult married Miss Gawler, grand-daughter of Colonel George Gawler, the first constitutional Governor of South Australia. This lady is associated with her husband in his work as a musician.

Obituary (NZ): Much regret will be felt by a wide circle of friends at the death of Mr. Arthur Boult, of "Hilltop," Khyber Pass Road, Auckland, who passed away yesterday at the age of 75. Born in Manchester, he early developed a talent for music, and received tuition from such well-known men as Drs. Percival and Mathias Field, of Liverpool. In 1876 he was appointed organist to the Adelaide Cathedral, and he held that post for nearly sixteen years, during which period the choir attained the premier position in Australia. Mr. Boult was very active in promoting the success of a number of bodies connected with music. He founded the Adelaide Philharmonic Society and the Adelaide Stringed Quartet Club. It was also due in no small measure to his advocacy and influence that a chair of music was established at the Adelaide University College, and for some years he held a position on the Board of Musical Studies. In 1880 Mr. Boult married the granddaughter of Colonel Gawler, the first constitutional Governor of Australia. About thirty years ago he was advised to try Rotorua for rheumatism, to which he was a martyr. He found the treatment so beneficial, and liked New Zealand so much, that he decided to remain here. He made his home in Auckland, and the family has ever since been prominent in the musical world. Mrs. Boult was closely associated with him in his work as a musician, and wide sympathy will be extended to her and their two daughters. Mr. Boult had suffered from rheumatism for a number of years, but managed to get on wonderfully well and cheerfully in spite of this drawback. He was keenly interested in everything connected with his art right up to the end. He was present at the last concert given by Bachaus, the pianist, and upon returning from the performance he had a stroke, from which he rallied, but never regained his strength, and passed away yesterday.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Argus (24 April 1873), 4

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (23 March 1874), 1

"NEWS BY THE SORATA", South Australian Register (6 August 1884), 6

"Mr. Arthur Boult at the Cathedral", The Inquirer & Commercial News (17 July 1889), 8

"DEATH OF MR. ARTHUR BOULT", Auckland Star (22 September 1926), 8

"THE LATE MR. ARTHUR BOULT", The Register (27 September 1926), 12

Bibliography and resources:

Cyclopedia of New Zealand volume 2, Auckland provincial district (1902), 259 

Associations: Cecil Sharp was his assistant organist at St. Peter's Cathedral, Adelaide.


Amateur musician (Dilletanti Society)

Active Sydney, 1840


? "ARRIVALS", The Colonist (26 January 1839), 2

[Advertisement], Australasian Chronicle (28 January 1840), 3


Professor of Music

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 29 March 1852 (per Earl of Charlemont, from Liverpool, 12 December 1851)
Active Sydney, NSW, 1853-56


Boulton commenced an elementary singing class, on Hullah's system, at the Sydney Mechanics School of Arts in March 1853, and in April also advertised as a private teacher of "Pianoforte, Organ, Singing, Musical Composition, &c, No. 188, Elizabeth street North". He began presenting weekly concerts in the summer of 1854-55. In August 1855 he advertised as a teacher of pianoforte on Logier's system.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", Empire (30 March 1852), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 April 1852), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 March 1853), 3

[2 advertisements], The Sydney Morning Herald (28 April 1853), 1

"CONCERT OF THE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", Empire (28 December 1854), 4

[Advertisement], Empire (16 August 1855), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (1 January 1856), 1



Arrived Sydney, 30 May 1851 (per Windsor, from London, 15 February)


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", Empire (31 May 1851), 2

"STRANGERS TAKEN IN AND DONE FOR", Bell's Life in Sydney (7 June 1851), 3

BOWDEN, Mary (Mrs. Alfred BOWDEN)


BOWEN, Charles

Violinist (Royal Lyceum Theatre)

Active Sydney, 1861


[Advertisement], Empire (5 August 1861), 1


Orchestral musician

Active Sydney, NSW, 1837


"To the Editor", The Sydney Monitor (31 March 1837), 3

BOYES, George (G. T. W. BOYES; G. T. W. B. BOYES; George Thomas William Blaney BOYES; "Alphabet BOYES")

Public servant, amateur violinist, pupil of Paolo Spagnoletti

Born Stubbington, Hampshire, England, 1787
Arrived Sydney, NSW, January 1824 (per Sir Geoffrey Webster)
Died Belle Vue, Newtown, Hobart, TAS, 16 August 1853 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)



Note, the ADB and the NLA's derived record incorrectly give Boyes's fourth and last forename as "Blamey", recte "Blaney"

Boyes's extant letters and journals (journals in the Royal Society of Tasmania collection digitised by the University of Tasmania) by the contain many brief but interesting references to his own music making in Sydney and Hobart, including playing violin duets, and a few late instances of amateur string quartet playing, as well as references to his children's music teachers and lessons.

An edited transcript of these musical references, to be added here, is in preparation.


Deaths in the district of Hobart, 1853; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1191409; RGD35/1/4 no 343 (DIGITISED)

"Obituary. Death of G. T. W. B. BOYES, Esquire, Colonial Auditor", The Courier (17 August 1853), 3 

We have the melancholy task of recording the death of George Thomas William Blaney Boyes, Esquire, the Auditor-General of this Colony. The deceased was on the half-pay list of the Commissariat, having held, since 1813, the commission of Deputy Assistant Commissary-General, in which capacity he served in Spain during some portion of the Peninsula campaign. Having been ordered to this colony he was, in 1826, selected by Sir G. Arthur for the office of Auditor of Civil Accounts, in which appointment he was confirmed by the Home Government. On the removal of Mr. Montagu, in 1842, his experience and aptitude for business recommended him to Sir John Franklin as a fit and proper successor to that very able Colonial Secretary. In this, however, he was superseded by the late Mr. Bicheno, with whom, during the lifetime of that gentleman, he lived in habits of the closest intimacy, an intimacy rendered most delightful by their mutual tastes and accomplishments. Retired in his habits, Mr. Boyes was known thoroughly only to a limited circle; but within that circle his gentlemanly bearing and his agreeable manners and conversation enforced the esteem of all. He died yesterday at one o'clock.

BOYLE, George E.

Singing-master, choirmaster, teacher of singing and piano

Born ? Ireland
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1884 (recently arrived from New Zealand)
Died ? Sydney, NSW, 12 January 1936

BOYLE, Lizzie

Pianist, piano teacher

Died Sydney, NSW, 7 July 1936

BOYLE, George Frederick

Pianist (pupil of Mark Hambourg, Busoni), teacher, composer

Born Woollahra, NSW, 29 June 1886
Died Philadelphia, USA, 20 June 1948

1886: Mr. G. E. Boyle, teacher of singing, is really doing good work in promoting a knowledge of vocal music among us, and is cultivating the ability to sing at sight. He has about 400 pupils receiving instruction from him, and he teaches them to sing on the old system of notation, which, when properly taught, is just as easy as any other ...

1892: SINGING and Piano. - Mr. and Mrs. BOYLE, have resumed tuition, 142 D'hst,-rd or Paling's, Geo-st.

1897: A choral concert was given by Mr. Boyle's singing class in the Y.M.C.A. Hall on October 2, and was largely attended. The pupils were assisted by Miss Marion Llewellyn, Mr. J. T. Brown, Mr. T. H. Massey, and Signor Priora. Mrs. Ruffy Hill gave a recitation, and Master George Boyle played several piano solos, showing precocious talent and careful teaching.

1900: Master George Boyle, pianist and accompanist to the Marie Narelle Concert Company, is only 14 years age. Passed the Senior Royal Academy Examination at the early age of 12, when the examiner pronounced him the most talented piano student he had ever examined, and predicted a great future for him. Master Boyle played at numerous concerts in Sydney, and received flattering press notices. Up to the time of his going on tour with Miss Narelle he had studied solely with his mother.

1907: Mr. George F. Boyle, who made his mark here as a composer, and also gave promise as a pianist, before his departure in October, 1905, has since studied a good deal in Berlin under Signor Busoni, and in England under Mr. Graham-Moore. He began his professional career this year by touring Holland as solo pianist with the operatic soprano, Mme. Nevada. He is now in London, whence he forwards programmes and press cuttings to show that he is not idle.

1910: Mr. George Boyle, son of the well-known singing master, Mr. G. E. Boyle, of Sydney, has been appointed Professor of the Piano-forte at the Peabody Conservatorium at Baltimore (U.S.A.). Mr. Boyle left Australia several years ago. He was frequently heard in Sydney as a pianist. He had admirable technique, and his studies and performances were always characterised by an intense earnestness. His compositions include a book of songs published by the Novello Music House, of London.


"AUCKLAND PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", New Zealand Herald (21 March 1882), 5

"Shipping", Evening News (4 August 1884), 4

"Singing Class", Evening News (6 September 1884), 6

[Advertisement], Freeman's Journal (27 December 1884), 12

"Boyle's Singing Classes", Evening News (8 January 1886), 3

"Births", The Sydney Morning Herald (31 July 1886), 1

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 December 1887), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1892), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 May 1895), 2

"Concerts", Australian Town and Country Journal (9 October 1897), 34

"MASTER GEORGE BOYLE", Freeman's Journal (10 November 1900), 12

"MR. GEOGRE BOYLE'S FAREWELL", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 August 1905), 14

"MUSICAL JUBILEE", Freeman's Journal (21 January 1905), 25

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 July 1907), 4

"PERSONAL", Freeman's Journal (7 July 1910), 23

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 November 1913), 4

"ORCHESTRAL SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 November 1913), 10

? "DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 January 1936), 14

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 July 1936), 8

G. F. works include:

Piano Concerto in D minor (New York: Schirmer, 1912): see also (NB: first Australian performance, Sydney 1913)

Bibliography and resources:,_George_Frederick

Irene W. Peery, George F. Boyle: pianist, teacher, composer (Thesis, D.M.A., Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, 1987)


Drum major, 57th Regiment

Active Sydney, NSW, 1829


"Supreme Court", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 September 1829), 3

... John Boyle, Drum-Major in the 57th Regiment, stated that he was present when the articles now produced were found in the prisoner's box in the Barracks ...

"FLOGGING", The Australian (30 December 1831), 3


Band of the 57th Regiment

BRACY, Henry

Tenor vocalist, operatic manager, agent

Born South Wales, UK, ? 8 January 1850
Arrived Melbourne, 1873
Died Darlinghurst, NSW, 31 January 1917 (NLA persistent identifier)

Henry Bracy, ? c. mid 1870s

Images: Above from Wikipedia (2015), ? Australia, c. mid 1870s; also 

THOMPSON, Clara (Miss Clara Rose HODGES; Mrs. BRACY; Clara Thompson BRACY)

Soprano vocalist, dancer, actor

Born London, England, 1847/1 January 1848
Died Los Angeles, California, USA, 22 February 1941, aged 93


BRACY, Sydney

Vocalist, actor

Born Melbourne, VIC, 18 December 1877
Died Hollywood, California, USA, 5 August 1942



"TOWN TALK", Geelong Advertiser (20 November 1873), 2

The Age mentions that Mr. Henry Bracy, a well-known tenor singer and actor at the Gaiety and other principal London Theatres, arrived on Tuesday by the steamer Northumberland, under engagement to Mr. Harwood, of the Theatre Royal.

"Mr. Henry Bracy", Table Talk (8 May 1891), 3

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 February 1917), 8

The passing of Mr. Henry Bracy at the age of 75 will turn the thoughts of old theatre-goers back to the days, or nights, in Sydney of French comic opera under William Saurin Lyster, before the dawn of the Gilbert and Sullivan period. After many successful seasons of Italian opera and English opera of the Wallace-Balfe class, Lyster decided to give the Australian public what he spoke of as "light French dishes." That was in 1875. The two English principals who were engaged were Clara Thompson, sister of the famous Lydia Thompson, and her husband, Mr. Henry Bracy, then a popular comic opera tenor. Lecocq's "La Filie de Madame Angot" was one of the first productions. The same composer's "Girofle Girofla" served to introduce Emelie Melville, a dainty American artist, who is still appearing in the United States, but not in singing parts. A little later Offenbach was represented by "The Grand Duchess," "Madame Favart," "La Belle Helene," and "Barbe Bleue." The opera bouffe repertory included "La Perichole," "The Princess of Trebizonde," "Chilperlc," and "The Brigands." Then came the first Australian production of "Les Cloches de Corneville." Shortly before the death of Lyster, in 1880, Mr. and Mrs. Bracy returned to England. While a member of the Gilbert and Sullivan Company at the Savoy, London, Mr. Bracy was selected as the first Prince Hilarion in "Princess Ida." Resuming their stage work in Australia Mr. and Mrs. Bracy were again in Sydney in 1889. They were prominent during a season under the conductorship of the late M. Henri Kowalski at the Opera House, which stood on the corner of King and York streets. In addition to the pianist-composer's own comic opera "Moustique," the company introduced "The Beggar Student." In 1890 the Bracy-Thompson company performed "The Sultan of Mocha," "The Beggar Student," and "The Lady of the Locket" at the Criterion Theatre. The following year Mr. Bracy appeared under the Williamson management, at the Theatre Royal, in "The Gondoliers." Miss Florence Young, Miss Elsie Cameron, Mr. Charles Ryley and Mr. William Elton were in the cast. During the Benson Planquette's "The Old Guard" was performed. In 1892, at Her Majesty's Theatre, Mr. Bracy produced for the Williamson management Audran's "La Cigale," with the late M. Leon Caron as conductor. The late Mr. J. C. Williamson, Miss Marie Halton, Miss Flora Graupner, Miss Florence Young, Miss Elsie Cameron, Mr. Charles Ryley, and Mr. Howard Vernon were associated in "La Cigale." Among other successful comic operas in which Mr. Bracy figured as a graceful actor and a singer with refinement of style, were "Dorothy," "The Yeoman of the Guard," and "Pepita." For a good number of years before his retirement in 1914, Mr. Bracy was retained by the Williamson management chiefly as a producer of comic opera. He assisted during the season of Italian opera at Her Majesty's in 1901, and directed the first Australian performance of Puccinl's "Madame Butterfly" (in English) at the Theatre Royal in 1910, with Signor Hazon as conductor. Miss Amy Castles and Mdlle Bel Sorel were seen on alternate nights in the name part. Mdlle Bel Sorel left Australia at the conclusion of her engagement. The Australian operatic artist is now in the United States. Mrs. Bracy, unfortunately, was not in Sydney when her husband died. She has been living in New York with her married son, Mr. Sydney Bracy, who, following in his father's footsteps, had a successful comic opera career in America, before yielding to the temptation of photo play acting. Mr. Phil Bracy, the other son, is a returned invalided soldier. Mr. Phil Bracy came from Melbourne to attend his father's funeral. Of the "old guard" of comic opera in Australia only Mrs. Bracy and Emelie Melville, now remain. Mr. Armes Beaumont died in Melbourne in 1913. Mr. Edward Farley answered "the last call" in Sydney a year ago.

"ANOTHER LINK GONE", Referee (7 February 1917), 14

Valentine Day, "HENRY BRACY MEMORIES", Referee (16 May 1917), 16

"REMINISCENCES OF THE STAGE", Referee (22 August 1917), 14

"MUSIC AND DRAMA. THEATRE ROYAL, HOBART", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 January 1932), 6 

THEATRE ROYAL, HOBART ... It was built by Mr. Degraves, founder of the Cascade Brewery of Hobart, and was opened in 1833 ... as the Victoria Theatre with a drama "God Speed the Plough." Its next door neighbour was the Shakespeare Inn, kept by Megson, a celebrated violinist of his day. The foundations are enormously heavy, and there are a lot of tiny cell-like rooms, that reach out under the stalls, some of which have been bricked up of recent years. One of the early lessees, Mrs. Clark, ran a stock company there, largely formed of relatives, who lived there. One of her dancing prodigies was young Clara Thompson, afterwards Mrs. Henry Bracy ...

This is an interesting surmise in its own right; but this was certainly not Clara THOMPSON, rather one or other of the Misses THOMSON

Bibliography and resources:

Tony Mills, "Bracy, Henry (1841-1917)", Australian dictionary of biography 7 (1979)

"Clara T. Bracy", Wikipedia

"Henry Bracy", Wikipedia

"Sydney Bracy", Wikipedia 

Deacon 2008, 207-11

Programs: The old guard (musical drama in 3 acts [H. B. Farine and R. Planquette]; interpreted by J. C. Williamson's Royal Comic Opera Company under the direction of Henry Bracy (Brisbane, 1891) 

Print music: Because I love thee so (words by C. L.; music by J. A. Robertson; Sung by Mr .Henry Bracy) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen &​ Co., [1890]) 


Organist, pianist

Born Birmingham, England
Active Australia, 1888-90 (TROVE user tag)



Secretary (Cecilian Society), carpenter-builder

Born UK, c. 1803
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1824 (free per Aguilar)
Died Sydney, NSW, 18 February 1868, aged 65


"THE CECILIAN SOCIETY", Australasian Chronicle (16 February 1841), 3

"THE CICILIAN [sic] SOCIETY", The Sydney Herald (6 August 1841), 2

[Advertisement], Australasian Chronicle (7 August 1841), 3

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1868), 1


"Interior of St. James Church, Sydney, 1831 drawn by Wm. Bradridge, Sen. Archt"

Bibliography and resources:


Music copyist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1862


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 September 1862), 1

JOHN BRADY, Music Copyist, Bay-street, Woolloomooloo, copyist to the Orpheonist Society. All music copied with neatness, cheapness, and dispatch.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 December 1862), 1

BRADY, Mary Ann (Miss M. Brady)

Soprano vocalist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1859-62


"UNIVERSITY MUSICAL FESTIVAL", Empire (6 July 1859), 5

"SYDNEY UNIVERSITY FESTIVAL. FIRST DAY", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 July 1859), 4

"SYDNEY UNIVERSITY FESTIVAL. SECOND DAY", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 July 1859), 5

"TO THE EDITOR", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 July 1859), 7

"SYDNEY VOCAL HARMONIC SOCIETY", The Australian Home Companion and Band of Hope Journal (5 November 1859), 23

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 September 1863), 1

BRAID, Charles

Teacher of Pianoforte and Singing

Active Melbourne, 1853


[Advertisement], The Argus (1 March 1853), 3

BRAIN, Mr. (junior)

Boy soprano vocalist

Active Launceston, VDL (TAS), 1843


"MRS. NAIRNE'S ORATORIO", Launceston Examiner (14 June 1843), 3

"CRIMINAL SITTINGS", Launceston Examiner (12 October 1844), 2

BRAITHWAITE, Frederick Nelson


Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1856
Died Richmond, TAS, 18 June 1904, aged 71


[Advertisement], The Argus (15 July 1856), 1

"ASSAULT", The Mercury (22 September 1868), 2

"DEATHS", The North Western Advocate (23 June 1904), 2 


Amateur comic vocalist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1847-48


Branagan having previously performed it in January as the "Original Comic Song The Sydney Cries", at the St. Patrick's Total Abstinence Society Musical Festival in Sydney in April 1848, as Cries of Sydney it "elicited roars of laughter".


"ST. PATRICK'S TOTAL ABSTINENCE SOCIETY", Sydney Chronicle (6 January 1847), 2

"GRAND MUSIC FESTIVAL", Sydney Chronicle (6 January 1848), 3

"TEETOTAL FESTIVAL", Sydney Chronicle (11 January 1848), 2

"ST. PATRICK'S TOTAL ABSTINENCE SOCIETY", Sydney Chronicle (18 March 1848), 3 

"ST. PATRICK'S TOTAL ABSTINENCE SOCIETY", Sydney Chronicle (25 April 1848), 2


Teacher of Music

Active Melbourne, by 1865


[Advertisement], The Argus (14 January 1865), 6

The Victoria Post Office Directory (1866), 18

BRANDON, James Lucas

Clarinet-player, [clarionet], farmer

Active Mudgee, NSW, 1853-54
Died Mudgee, October 1876


"HIGHWAY ROBBERY", Bathurst Free Press (25 January 1851), 6

"WILFUL MURDER", Bathurst Free Press (4 March 1854), 2

Maurice Dalton was indicted for the wilful murder of William Oxley on the 29th April last, at Mudgee. He pleaded not guilty and was defended by Mr. Holroyd. Attorney - Mr. Serjeant. James Lucas Brandon deposed that about 1 o'clock of the morning of the 29th April, he was proceeding homeward, playing a clarinet, when the prisoner walked up to him and after asking him what he wanted playing that b----y thing, knocked him down.

"BATHURST CIRCUIT COURT", Empire (4 March 1856), 3

"INQUESTS", Freeman's Journal (4 November 1876), 9


Bandmaster, conductor, violinist, composer (The Austrian Strauss Band)

Touring Australia, October 1880 to August 1881


"THE DOG SHOW", The Mercury (17 January 1881). 3

The performers numbered nearly 50, though all did not play at the same time, and Herr Braun was a thoroughly efficient conductor, as stolid as usual ...

"THE AUSTRIAN BAND AT WALLAROO", The Wallaroo Times (8 June 1881), 2

"EPITOME OF GENERAL NEWS", Launceston Examiner (1 September 1882), 3

Herr Braun, formerly bandmaster of the Austrian Band, has decided to settle in Christchurch, N.Z., and has been elected bandmaster of the City Guards.

"THE JUVENILE OPERA TROUPE", Taranaki Herald (22 November 1883), 2


Austrian Strauss Band



Professor of Music

Active Maitland, NSW, 1853


"MR. S. BREMER, Professor of Music AND DANCING, ORGANIST, &c, Rose Inn, West Maitland. Piano Fortes Tuned and Repaired"; otherwise unidentified.


[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (8 June 1853), 3

BRENNI, J. W. (later Mr. D. BRENNI, and Mr. BRENNY)

Vocalist, minstrel, delineator (Howard's Serenaders)

Active NSW, by 1853


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 January 1853), 3

[Advertisement], Empire (2 March 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 August 1854), 1

"HALL THE WIZARD, AND THE SERENADERS", The Maitland Mercury (24 November 1855), 2

[Advertisement], Empire (5 February 1856), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 August 1856), 1]

BREWER, Francis Campbell (F. C. Brewer)

Tenor vocalist, choral conductor, music and drama reviewer, journalist

Born Stourbridge, England 1826
Arrived Sydney, October 1834
Died Sydney, 23 November 1911

BREWER, Frank (Francis Patrick)

Tenor vocalist, music teacher

Born Sydney, ? 1855 (son of the above)
Died Sydney, 15 July 1943

BREWER, Elizabeth Mary (HARRISON; Mrs. Frank BREWER)

Music teacher

Married 1880
Died Summer Hill, 7 April 1935, aged 79

Sydney 1882: The Opening of St. Mary's Cathedral ... The Mass sung was Haydn's No. 3, known as the "Imperial" Mass ... In the "Gloria" Mr. Frank Brewer sang the tenor solo with great purity of intonation ...

Sydney 1889: Brewer and Wife v. Marshall. - It was an action in which Francis Patrick Brewer (of Summer Hill) and his wife Mary sued William Marshall, of George-street, Sydney, for £23 10s 6d, for the instruction of the defendant's wife in singing and instrumental music. A verdict was given for the full amount, with the expenses of one witness.

1891 (letter, F.C.B.): In 1835, I think it was on December 12, I commenced my career on the press under Mr. [Edward Smith] Hall, who was then and had been for some years the proprietor and editor of the Sydney Monitor.

Documentation: "MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 December 1880), 8

"The Opening of St. Mary's Cathedral", The Maitland Mercury (12 September 1882), 3

"District Court", Evening News (23 August 1889), 8

"EDWARD SMITH HALL. TO THE EDITOR", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 August 1891), 7

"PUBLICATIONS RECEIVED", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 August 1892), 6

"A PIONEER JOURNALIST. DEATH OF MR. F. C. BREWER. A MEMORY OF EARLY SYDNEY", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1911), 8

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1911), 8


F. C. Brewer, The drama and music in New South Wales (Sydney: Charles Potter, Govt. Printer, 1892) ("Published by authority of the New South Wales Commissioners for the World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1893")

Bibliography and resources:

BRICKWOOD, Winifred Amelia (Mrs. John CALLAGHAN)


Born ? Devon, England, c.1839
Active Sydney, early-mid 1860s
Died Mosman, NSW, 5 August 1922, aged 83 years


Miss W. A Brickwood's The Randwick mazurka (Sydney: W. J. Johnson) was published in August 1863. A second print, "the AUSTRALIAN MELODIES, by Miss Brickwood, Newtown," was published at W. H. Paling's, Wynyard-square, in December 1864. Unfortunately, no copy has been identified, but given its title and timing the print may well have been a setting of some of the recently published "Australian Melodies" by poet J. Sheridan Moore (husband of the singer Flora Harris).

Moore's collection had been reviewed in The Sydney Morning Heraldin August that year. W. J. Macdougall had previously set two of the poems, The Wail from England in 1862 (lost), and The beauty that blooms in Australia ("No 1 of Australian national Melodies") (Sydney: Wilkie & Elvy, 1863). On 2 January 1865, Winifred Amelia Brickwood became Mrs. John Callaghan. The couple were living at Holyrood House, Kingston, Newtown in 1873, and in Botany-street, Moore Park in 1887. She died at her residence, Warrawee, Mosman, in 1922.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 August 1863), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 December 1864), 1

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 January 1865), 1

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 August 1922), 8

Bibliography and resources:

J. Sheridan Moore, Spring-life: lyrics and Australian melodies (Sydney: Reading and Wellbank, 1864)

On the genesis of the "Australian Melodies" see also: vii

Frances Devlin Glass, Moore, Joseph Sheridan (1828-1891), Australian dictionary of biography 5 (1974)

[Family history]

Her father, Arthur Peter Brickwood, R.N., had contracted a bigamist marriage in Honolulu in 1846, and died there in 1886.


Bass vocalist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 May 1842), 3

BRIDSON, Sarah Ann (BELL; later KINLOCH)

Vocalist, Professor of the Pianoforte and Singing (pupil of Logier)

BRIDSON, Thomas Vicary (T. V. Bridson; Thomas Vicarez; Thomas Michael BRIDSON)

Conductor, organist, organ builder

Born Dublin, Ireland, c.1826
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1854
Died Rockhampton, QLD, 14 August 1869, aged 43


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 March 1854), 2

"THE HERWYN'S FAREWELL CONCERT", Bell's Life in Sydney (9 September 1854), 2

"SYDNEY'S PROGRESS IN MUSICAL SCIENCE", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 August 1856), 4

"NEW ORGAN", Freeman's Journal (30 August 1856), 2

We have been to hear the splendid organ just erected in the English Opera House by Mr. T. V. Bridson. It is undoubtedly one of the finest instruments of the kind in these colonies. The tone is of the roundest and richest quality; and under the delicate touch of Mr. Packer, its effect is truly thrilling.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 January 1859), 2

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 November 1859), 8

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 September 1869), 9

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 August 1870), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 April 1872), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Rushworth 1988, 81-83

BRINKMANN, Elias Frederick Louis


Active Sydney, NSW, 1871


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 October 1868), 1

"MARRIAGES", Empire (5 June 1871), 1


Amateur vocalist, pianist



Arrived Sydney, NSW, 7 November 1821
Departed Sydney, NSW, November 1825


Letter from Elizabeth Macarthur, Parramatta, 4 September 1822 (ed. Sibella Macarthur Onslow (ed.), Some early records of the Macarthurs of Camden (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1914), 373-374

We continue to like our present Governor Sir Thomas Brisbane. Lady Brisbane and her sister Miss Macdougall are gentle and amiable - perfectly unaffected in their manners and habits, yet possessing all the acquirements of wellborn and well educated persons. ... The ladies are fond of and live in great retirement. They mix little in society and give none of those large entertainments, which Mrs. Macquarie used to do. They have a Dinner Party once a week. Their table is handsomely set out, and served in a manner superior to anything we have yet seen in the Colony. Lady Brisbane has a good Piano, on which she occasionally plays, and accompanies the instrument with her voice. Miss Macdougall plays the Harp, and Mr. Rumker the Piano in turn. 

Bibliography and resources:

J. D. Heydon, Brisbane, Sir Thomas Makdougall (1773-1860), Australian dictionary of biography 1 (1966)

BRISTOW, William

Bugler, 51st Regiment

Departed Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), August 1846 (for Bangalore)


[News], The Courier (12 August 1846), 3

"THE 51ST IN INDIA", The Courier (10 November 1847), 2

We have seen a letter dated Bangalore, 28th May, addressed by William Bristow, a bugler in the regiment, to his father, resident in Hobart Town. It appears from this letter that the left wing, stationed at Ponnamalee, has suffered severely from cholera ...


Band of the 51st Regiment


Professor of music

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1855
Died Fitzroy, VIC, November 1866


[Advertisement], The Argus (3 August 1855), 1

"Funeral notices", The Argus (17 November 1866), 8


Musician, music teacher

Born Clonmel, Ireland, 31 October 1839
Arrived WA, 1865
Died Bournemouth, England, 2 August 1899



The ADB commits a paragraph to her in her husband's entry. Described as "very talented", in "Perth she became active in musical circles and herself taught music at the Bishop's College (Hale School). In 1876 she opened a school of her own ... Family photographs show a handsome, determined pair well capable of the imaginative enterprise and drive that marked their activities in Western Australia". The SL-WA holds her copy of a volume of Mendelssohn's Songs without words. (; also family papers (

Bibliography and resources: H. Drake-Brockman, "Broadhurst, Charles Edward (1826-1905)", Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)



Born Bath, England, 1807
Departed Sydney, c.1855-56 (for UK)
Died Boscombe, England, 19 September 1887


Daughter of Unitarian minister and musical enthusiast, Thomas Broadhurst, of Bath (with Henry Harrington, a co-founder of the Bath Philharmonic Society), and sister of Edward Broadhurst (in Sydney from 1838). Stephen Marsh dedicated his Homebush Galop (published in 1856; no copy identified) to Mrs. John Rose Holden, who in May 1853 had married the politician, horse-racing enthusiast and secretary of Homebush Races. Holden already had musical connections, Isaab Nathan and John and Frank Howson having sung at a farewell dinner for him in Sydney in 1849. As noted by Bell's Life, Mrs Holden was the "late Miss Broadhurst, the celebrated pianist" for whom Marsh had composed it. Marsh had probably known Broadhurst in England. There is no record of her performing professionally in Sydney, and the Holden's announced by June 1855 intention to return to England soon. It was her husband who was the subject of "Rose Holden's Song", published as one of a set of six "Songs of the Nominees" in the Empire in October 1855.

On the Broadhursts, and their relative Bessie Holland, see also John Chapple, Elizabeth Gaskell: the early years (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1997).


"MRS. A. SHAW'S CONCERT", The Musical World (27 May 1836), 175

"BATH.-THE MISS BROADHURSTS' CONCERTS", The Musical World (10 February 1837), 125

"MRS. SHAW AND THE MISS BROADHURSTS", The Musical World (21 April 1837), 105

"Public Farewell Dinner to John Rose Holden, Esq.", Bell's Life in Sydney (24 February 1849), 2

"MARRIED", Bell's Life in Sydney (14 May 1853), 3

"SONGS OF THE NOMINEES. No.6. ROSE HOLDEN'S SONG", Empire (1 October 1855), 5

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 June 1856), 4

"MUSICAL CRITIQUE", Bell's Life in Sydney (14 June 1856), 2

Bibliography and resources:

Jerom Murch, Biographical sketches of Bath celebrities, ancient and modern: with some fragments of local history (London: Isaac Pitman & Sons, 1893), 149-51

Vivienne Parsons, "Holden, John Rose (1810-1860)", Australian dictionary of biography 1 (1966)

J. M. Bennett, "Broadhurst, Edward (1810-1883)", Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)

BROADHURST, William Gore

Professor of music, pianist, organist, composer

Born London, 4 November 1838
Active Sydney, by August 1867
Died Melbourne, 31 January 1914, aged 74


"ENTERTAINMENT", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 August1867), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (19 August1867), 8

"NAVAL RECEPTION OF HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 December 1867), 13

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 January 1869), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 July 1871), 6

"NEW INSOLVENTS", The Argus (27 May 1893), 9

"DEATHS", The Argus (2 February 1914), 1

"PERSONAL", The Argus (2 February 1914), 9

[News], Record [Emerald Hill, VIC] (7 February 1914), 2

Mr. W. G. Broadhurst, of 68 St. Vincent Place, South Melbourne, died at St. Vincent's Hospital at an early hour on Saturday morning. For the past 26 years the late Mr. Broadhurst held the position of organist at SS. Peter and Paul's .Church, South Melbourne, and composed a special Mass for the opening of the additions to the church by Archbishop Carr in April of last year. Prior to coming to Australia he was a choir boy at Westminster Abbey. Mr. Broadhurst, who was 74 years of age, leaves a widow, and grown up family of two sons and five daughters ...

Musical works:

Maribyrnong Park Estate waltz (South Melbourne: Broadhurst, [n.d.])

Rouse ye Britons (patriotic song; words and music by Edwd. Septimus Powell; arr. by W. G. Broadhurst; Composed in honor of Her Most Gracious Majesty's Diamond Jubilee, 1897) (Albert Park, Melbourne : E.S. Powell, [1897])


Dancer, actor

Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (5 February, 1842), 3

"OLYMPIC THEATRE", The Sydney Herald (18 March 1842), 2


Musician, violinist

Active Ballarat, VIC, 1865  


[Advertisement], The Star (6 September 1864), 3

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Star (24 October 1864), 2s

Ballarat and Ballarat District Directory (1865), 68

BRODERICK, James Patrick (junior)

Organist, harmonium player, choirmaster, organ builder

Born Maitland, NSW, 1837
Died Sydney, NSW, 30 October 1907, aged 60



Born Maitland, NSW, 1855
Died Maitland, 1873


"NARROW ESCAPE FROM FIRE", The Maitland Mercury (23 April 1864), 2

"SACRED AND SECULAR CONCERT", The Maitland Mercury (21 March 1865), 3

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (11 August 1866), 5

PIANOFORTES, HARMONIUMS, and other MUSICAL INSTRUMENT TUNED and BEPAIRED in a superior manner. Address, Opposite the Exchange Hotel, West Maitland. JAMES P. BRODERICK. August 9th, 1866. TESTIMONIALS. I have much pleasure in recommending to my pupils, and the public in general, Mr. James Broderick for tuning and repairing pianos and harmoniums, as his skill and care are certainly equal, if not superior, to anyone known to me in the colony. DR. CHS. H. HORN. Maitland, August, 1866. High-street, West Maitland, July 24th, 1866. This is to certify that I have had many opportunities of testing the ability of Mr James Broderick as a tuner, and have no hesitation in pronouncing him perfectly qualified for that business in all its branches, and, from his late experience in regulating and repairing piano-fortes, have no doubt he will give entire satisfaction to all who may think proper to honour him with their patronage. MARMADUKE H. WILSON.

"ST. BRIDGET'S CHURCH, BRANXTON", The Maitland Mercury (29 November 1866), 2

"DIOCESE OF MAITLAND", Freeman's Journal (1 March 1873), 9

The grand concert in aid of St. Johns Cathedral, advertised for Monday, the 10th instant, was postponed until the 17th instant, owing to the untimely and much-regretted death of Miss Annie Broderick, formerly a member of St. John's choir, and sister to its able organist and conductor, Mr. J .P. Broderick. Miss Broderick enjoyed a high reputation in musical circles - she was gifted with a rich, sweet voice, and was, while she remained in the choir, its "brightest star." Possessed of rare musical abilities, and endowed with all the refinement of female intellect, and all the energy of enthusiasm, Miss Broderick was certain to attain distinction in her favourite, her especial study - music. Who, that has heard her in the soul-entrancing com positions of Mozart, Mendelssohn, Haydn, &c, can forget the pathos and soul in which she would enshrine, as it were, the words which were the inspiration of these gifted masters. Neither can we forget her delightful rendering of those grand old melodies, which the genius of Moore has clad in words as bewitching as the luscious music of the airs themselves. "I saw from the Beach" was her last song before a Maitland audience. The voice, which then so thrilled her hearers, is now hushed, and the fingers, which glided so nimbly over the keyboard, are still, for evermore. The first part of the concluding words of her favourite song, "She's far from the Land," can now but be too appropriately applied to herself : - "They've made her a grave where the sun beams rest, When they promise a glorious morrow! ..."

"Death of Mr. J. P. Broderick", The Maitland Daily Mercury (31 October 1907), 2

... For many years the late Mr. Broderick was organist and choirmaster of St. John's Cathedral, and after resigning from that position he gave his attention to the tuning of organs and pianos, while he conducted an agency for the sale of musical instruments at his late residence in Elgin-street ... He was a native of Maitland district, and was about 65 years [sic] of age.

Musical edition:

The evening service book, or, manual of sacred music, for the use of choirs, containing the order of vespers, in Latin, for all Sundays and festivals of the year, selected and arranged by James P. Broderick

(Maitland: E. Tipper, Pr., 1869; ? 1880) 

Bibliography and resources:

Geoffrey Cox (historical and technical documentation), "St John's Anglican Church Carthage Street, Tamworth [organs]" (OHTA 2014)  

BROMLEY, William James

Clarinettist, bandsman (Band of the 99th Regiment)

Died Hobart, 30 July 1855, aged 33 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Australian (29 November 1845), 1

"MISCELLANEA", The Courier (8 November 1851), 2

"SOLDIER'S FUNERAL", Colonial Times (2 August 1855), 3

The remains of William James Bromley, the bandsman, were yesterday interred at St. David's burying ground. The band of the regiment, of which deceased had been an esteemed member, attended, and as the funeral procession moved on, played the Dead March in Saul ...

Note: A memorial plaque at Anglesea Barracks, Hobart:

The stone was erected by his Brother Musicians as a tribute of respect. Also Wm. JA. BROMLEY Musician in the same Corps who departed this life 30th July 1855 Aged 33 years. Affection weeps Heaven rejoices.

BROOKS, T. H. (Mr.)


Active Australia, 1860-62


In Hobart in January 1860, Rosina Carandini and Brooks performed Stephen Glover's The blind girl to her harp. The military march referred to below (12 March 1862) is probably Bochsa's Favourite march in imitation of a military band at a distance.


"GRAND CONCERT", The Hobart Town Daily Mercury (31 January 1860), 2

[News], The Argus (23 May 1860), 4

"TO THE EDITOR", Empire (29 August 1860), 5

"THE DINNER", Empire (29 August 1861), 5

"DR. McGREGOR'S ENTERTAINMENT", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 November 1861), 4

"MR. T. H. BROOKS' CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 March 1862), 5

The harp has for many years gone out of vogue, its place being taken by the piano-forte, the cause of which has, no doubt, been that efficiency in playing upon the latter instrument can be acquired far more easily than that in playing on the former. The circumstance of the harp being now seldom heard has the effect of rendering such performances as those of last evening a grateful variation upon the staple of concerts, the music possessing, in addition to its other charms, those of novelty and freshness. The harp playing of Mr. Brooks displayed his thorough mastery over a most difficult instrument, and his power of producing all the varying effects required by the music. The wondrous variety of thrilling and of delicate tones which the skilful harpist produced at pleasure excited the regret that this elegant accomplishment, which was once so popular, should be now so entirely neglected, and also that Mr. Brooks' services should not be more frequently enlisted at the public concerts in Sydney. Mr. Brooks, besides accompanying several of the vocalists, gave two solo performances on the harp, both of which were rapturously encored. The first was the popular Irish melody Believe me if all those endearing young charms with variations, a very brilliant piece of playing. The encore exhibited the power of the harpist even more signally. It represented the march of a military band; the stirring effects produced by their gradual approach and retreat while playing being most dexterously described by the crescendo and diminuendo movements.

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 March 1862), 7

Bibliography and resources:

Hallo 2014, 135, 163-67

BROOKE, Warren Auber (Rev'd W. A. BROOKE)

Organist, pianist, Anglican priest

Active Tasmania, by 1854
Died Clifton, Gloucesteshire, England, 7 November 1906, aged 81


Brooke, late of Trinity College Cambridge, was senior fellow at Christ's College, Hobart in 1854. An appendix to Stoney's A year in Tasmania (306) reprints a press report of the Annual Commemoration (? in 1854):

Shortly after eleven, the proceedings of the day commenced with the usual morning service in the chapel, at which the late Warden said prayers, and the lessons were read by the Divinity Fellow in waiting for the week (Mr. Adams). Those who are admirers of sacred music had a great treat in the performance on the organ by the Rev. W. A. Brooke, whose accompaniments to the chanting of the service were of a very superior description, adding very much to the impressiveness of that solemn and beautiful ritual.


[Advertisement], The Argus (8 June 1854), 8

"George Town", The Cornwall Chronicle (20 January 1869), 3

"GRAND AMATEUR CONCERT AT THE MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", The Cornwall Chronicle (24 July 1872), 2

"CHURCH MUSIC", The Argus (17 March 1876), 7

"EARLY LAUNCESTON. MR. WHITFIELD'S LECTURE No.4", Launceston Examiner (7 July 1897), 7

"SCHOOL SPEECH DAYS. THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL", Examiner (22 December 1906), 11


Vocalist, violinist (Rainer's Minstrels)

Arrived Sydney, 19 September 1852 (per Speed, from San Francisco, 28 July)


"RAINER'S SERENADERS", Daily Alta California (25 July 1852)

"ARRIVALS", The Maitland Mercury (25 September 1852), 2

"THE LAST APPEARANCE OF THE SERENADERS", The Courier (21 April 1853), 3


Related prints:

Old Folks at Home (as sung by T. Brower of Rainer's Minstrels, as arranged by J. C. Rainer) (Sydney: For the author by H. Marsh. [185?])


Violin player (? band of the 63rd Regiment)

Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1830


"VAN DIEMAN'S LAND NEWS. MR. DEANE'S CONCERT", The Sydney Monitor (2 October 1830), 4

The concert commenced with a grand symphony my Stamity [Stamitz]. Mr. Deane presided very ably at the violin, Messrs. Brown and Williams (master of the Band of the 63rd) seconds., Mr. Bock and Master Deane (a young gentleman only ten years old) tenors, Mr. Hoffer, a violoncello, and two horns by excellent performers of the 63rd Band. This beautiful symphony was performed with the greatest effect, and received with the warmest applause.


? Band of the 63rd Regiment


Musician, orchestra leader

Active Sydney, NSW, 1853


"MALCOLM'S AMPHITHEATRE", Illustrated Sydney News (22 October 1853), 2

"MALCOLM'S AMPHITHEATRE", Illustrated Sydney News (19 November 1853), 6

We would again suggest to Mr. Brown the necessity of an improvement in the music, and a greater variety. The music, on Tuesday night, during Cardoza's performance, was wretched. If Mr. Brown wishes to maintain his character as a musician, there must be a decided   change in the orchestra.

[Advertisement], Illustrated Sydney News (3 December 1853), 6



Violin and guitar maker and repairer, composer

Active Sydney, by January 1857 (? arrived per La Hogue)


Violin maker

Active Melbourne, 1880

BROWN, Walter James, junior

Violin maker and repairer

Born London, c. 1823
Arrived Sydney, 6 February 1857 (per Walter Hood, from London)
Died Melbourne, 16 June 1899, aged 77 ("a colonist over 40 years")


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 January 1857), 4

A. BROWN, Violin Maker and Repairer, from Joseph Panormo's, London, - at D. Buist's, Bridge-street.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 January 1857), 8

[Advertisement]: "LA HOGUE POLKA", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 January 1857), 2

LA HOGUE POLKA, composed by A. BROWN, dedicated to Captain Neatby and Officers of the ship, to be published on SATURDAY next Price 2s 6d. W. J. JOHNSON and CO, 57, Pitt-street.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 May 1857), 10

A. BROWN, Violin Maker and Repairer, from Joseph Panormo's, London Sydney.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 June 1858), 1

VIOLINS. W. J. BROWN, Jun., violin maker and musical instrument repairer, No. 149, Pitt-street North, late of Bishopagate, London.

"INSOLVENCY COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 June 1859), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 January 1876), 12

W. J. BROWN, From Brown and Son, London, VIOLIN MAKER and REPAIRER, 56 Little Collins-street east, Melbourne. N.B.-All kinds of musical instruments repaired. For antecedents of Brown and Son, London, see Sandy's and Forster's, "History of Violin.

"VICTORIA. XI. MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS", The Argus (23 December 1880), 58s

J. Brown, of 57 Lygon street, exhibits a case of his "Carltonia" violins. It is doubtful if this early naming of violins is the surest way to make a fame for them. It is the verdict of posterity which stamps upon any particular kind an unquestionable value. Mr. Brown's exhibits consist of three violins, with the date of manufacture attached to each. They are of good form, but being under lock and key the "varnishing" and other points in connexion with the make are not open to minute description. The next case is very interesting, and in some sense illustrates what we have just said about the verdict of posterity. It is the exhibit of W. J. Brown, dealer and repairer, 50 Little Collins-street east, and it contains violins as follows namely, Gaspard di Salo, A.D. 1597; Paolo Maggini, A.D. 1600; another by the same maker, A.D. 1624; Nicholas Amati, A.D. 1671; Ruggierius, A.D. 1680; Joseph Guarnerius, A.D. 1699; and Guadagnini, A.D. 1724; and there is also in the same case a little "Kit".


"DEATHS", The Argus (17 June 1899), 5

Bibliography and resources:

William Sandys and Simon Andrew Forster, The history of the violin and other instruments played on with the bow ... (London: William Reeves, 1864), 354-55

Associated with the name of Kennedy, as fiddle-makers, are James Brown, the elder and younger, both of whom, in early life, were silk-weavers, particularly the father, and lived in the locality of Shoreditch. About 1804 an intimacy arose with the Kennedy family, whereby James Brown the elder acquired some knowledge of fiddle-making; and, being made more perfect in the use of the tools by Thomas Kennedy, he at length became a repairer and maker of instruments for future support. About 1830 he slipped down the stairs of his dwelling-house, in Wheeler Street, Spitalfields, and broke one of the ankles; the fracture being most severe, the relatives were advised to take him to the hospital. Within a week of the accident, mortification set in, and he died at the age of seventy-five years, in September 1830 or 1834; the son does not remember the date accurately, but he thinks the former year; and he says they (father and son) resided in Wheeler Street for forty-six years, but not always in the same house. James Brown, the younger, was born November 1786, and learned to make fiddles of his father; but, to assist in other branches of the trade, he was mostly employed in making the various bows for the instruments. Since the death of his father, the greater attention has been given to the manufacture of violins, violoncellos, and double basses. This person died in 1860 at his residence in White Lion Street, Norton Folgate, in his seventy-fourth year. The father and son were good average workmen, but no marked style of finish. A son of this last person learned to make instruments of his father; but, when about twenty years of age, he quitted the business to play the contra-basso at theatres; and it is believed he now has some professional engagement in Australia, as success did not attend his exertions at "the Diggins."

BROWN, Frances Helen (Mrs. John HADSLEY)

Teacher, music teacher

Born ? UK, c.1797
Active Windsor, NSW, c.1842-43
Married John HADSLEY, NSW, 1843 (BDM NSW 250/1843 V1843250 27C)
Died Camperdown, NSW, 22 August 1881, aged 84 (BDM NSW 3349/1881)


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 December 1842), 1

WINDSOR. MRS. BROWN, returning thanks for the patronage she has received, begs to inform her friends and the public that she has removed her establishment to Fairfield, the late delightfully situated residence of Dr. Gamack; she will have vacancies for a few more Pupils after the ensuing vacation, which will terminate January 16, 1843. The most respectable references will be given. Fairfield, December 1.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 July 1843), 3 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 December 1843), 1 

[Advertisement], The Weekly Register of Politics, Facts and General Literature (20 January 1844), 394 


Alleged detractor of Vincenzo Chiodetti


Violinist, vocalist, composer

Active Bathurst, NSW, 1850


[Advertisement], Bathurst Free Press (7 September 1850), 5

Polka - Composed by J. Brown.

"BATHURST SERENADERS", Bathurst Free Press (12 October 1850), 4

A miscellaneous concert, composed of sentimental and nigger songs, took place at Mr. Minehan's music room, on Monday, night week. Several of the sentimental songs were very creditably gone through, and the solos on the violin, by Mr. Brown, were exquisitely performed ...


Double-bass player

Active Sydney, NSW, 1865


Brown played double-bass in Lavenu's orchestra for the Sydney University Musical Festival in 1859, and in George Loder and Charles Eigenschenck's orchestra for Lyster's Opera at the Prince of Wales Theatre, Sydney, in 1865.


[Advertisement], Empire (4 July 1859), 6

[Advertisement], Empire (17 April 1865), 1



Active Hobart, TAS, 1900


"THE ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION", The Mercury (18 April 1900), 2

Mr. J. Brown will, with the Vice-Regal Band, play a piece which he has composed, entitled "The Southern Cross," and composed in honour of the members of the expedition. The waltz is full of melody, and was played last year by special request at the Government House ball.

BROWN, Jim (alias of George KING)

Musician ("nigger vocalist")

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1843


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 January 1843), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 May 1844), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 February 1845), 3

"ASSAULT IN THE CITY THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 July 1848), 3

"STEALING IN A DWELLING", The Maitland Mercury (26 September 1849), 3

"NEW YEAR'S DAY RIOTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 January 1850), 2

A coloured man, well known in the city under the name of Jim Brown, following ostensibly the profession of musician at various low public-houses in the city, was yesterday committed for trial at the Quarter Sessions, for acting as a leader in the riotous mobs which disturbed the peace of the city on New Year's night - Herald, Jan. 30.

"KNOCKING AT THE DOOR", Bell's Life In Sydney (2 February 1850), 1s

"TURTLE, TORTISE, OR TURPIN", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 May 1851), 2



Active Beechworth, VIC, 1861


"BEECHWORTH POLICE COURT", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (7 December 1861), 3

A musical barber. - John Brown of Ford street, summoned Montague Murray for the sum of £1, for services rendered as a musician at the Star Theatre on Saturday last. Complainant said the music put before him was wrongly written, and he could not play it. Had not been invited to "dry up," or "lie down." Had not played an Irish jig to the audience, and set them all dancing. Had not been told by the defendant that he (complainant) had injured defendant's reputation very much.

BROWN, John (? pseud.)

Songwriter, poet

Active Bendigo, VIC, 1862


"SQUATTER'S SONG", Bendigo Advertiser (26 July 1862), 3

BROWN, Mr. T. F.

Precentor, conductor of psalmody

Active Mortlake, VIC, 1859

Bibliography and resources:

J. E. Murdoch, Fifty Years of Presbyterianism in Mortlake, 1847-1897 (Mortlake: Printed at the Dispatch Office, 1917)

PRECENTORS. 1859, Mr. T. F. Brown; 1866, Mr. H. C. Johnstone, at a salary of £10 a year; 1869, Mr. J. G. Flanders; 1875, Mr. Maynard, at £4. 4s. a quarter (for two quarters)...

BROWN, Walter James (see ABOVE)

BROWNE, Francis Edward Douglas

? Music copyist, surveyor, penman, convict

Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1825 (convict per Medway, from the Downs, 22 August 1825)
Active Hobart Town, 1834


Browne advertised that either he or his staff would copy music.


[Advertisement], The Colonist and Van Diemen's Land Commercial and Agricultural Advertiser (18 February 1834), 1 

... Music copied with neatness and accuracy.

BROWNE, Thomas

Music printer and publisher

Born London, 10 March 1816
Active Launceston c.1835-44, Hobart from 1844
Died Hobart, 23 December 1870, aged 54 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


In October 1845 the Hobart Courier noted that Browne, a general printer, had already "published one or two pieces of approved music", neither of which have been identified. He went on to issue Joseph Reichenberg's Ancient Hebrew Melodies in 1847; Francis Hartwell Henslowe's four Songs of Zion, Where is thy home and The Campbell-Town Waltzes in 1849, and Julius Imberg's lost Tasmanian quadrilles in 1851.


"TASMANIAN PUBLICATIONS", The Courier (4 October 1845), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (25 January 1851), 6

"MR. IMBERG'S QUADRILLES", Colonial Times (28 January 1851), 2

"DEATH", The Mercury (24 December 1870), 1

Bibliography and resources:

"Thomas Browne" (1816-1870)", DAAO


Baritone vocalist, songwriter

Born UK, 1861
Arrived Adelaide/Melbourne, May 1894
In USA, c.1903-13
Died (suicide) Melbourne, 6/7 September 1919, aged 55

Trove search:"Wallace+Brownlow" 

Wallace Brownlow, c.1899


(above, c.1899) 

1893-04-22: London, March 18th ... Mr. Wallace Brownlow, who created the part of the Chaplain of the Fleet in the 'Golden Web,' at the Lyric on Saturday evening, visited the colonies ten or twelve years ago, but did not 'strike oil.' He contemplates another visit under happier auspices.

1894-05-11: Mr. Wallace Brownlow, the new baritone of the Comic Opera Company, was a passenger to Australia by the R.M.S. Oratava, and joined the Royal Comic Opera Company at Adelaide.

1919-09-08: OPERA SINGER'S DEATH. FOUND WITH THROAT CUT. Wallace Brownlow's End. With his throat gashed and a razor lying on the grass at his side, Mr Wallace Brownlow, a well known baritone singer, who won distinction in light musical productions in Melbourne over 20 years ago, was found dead in the Exhibition Gardens early yesterday morning. Constable C. P. Hunt, of Carlton, when patrolling the gardens, noticed the dead man lying near the western end of the Exhibition Building. In one of his pockets was found a note, addressed to the coroner in which Mr Brownlow intimated that he intended to take his life. The same determination was expressed in another note addressed to any person making inquiries into his death. Mr. Brownlow was 55 years of age and had recently been employed at the Influenza Hospital in the Exhibition Building. He had been staying at Fuller's Hotel, Bourke street, and it is understood that some months ago he spent a period as a member of the Permanent Guard. The body has been removed to the Morgue. In his day, Mr Wallace Brownlow was one of the most popular actors ever known in Australia in comic open and musical comedy. His chief successes were in "Floradora" and "Ma Mie Rosette," and in many other musical pieces he gained high favour. His first appearance in this country was made on June 16, 1894, when the romantic light opera, "Ma Mie Rosette,' was given by the Royal Comic Opera Company for the first time in Australia at the Princess theatre, Melbourne. The fine cast included Miss Nellie Stewart as the village girl, Rosette, Mr. Brownlow as King Henry IV of France, Mr. Joseph Tapley as Rosette's lover, Vincent, Miss Florence Young as the haughty court lady, Corsindre, Mr. George Lauri as the brisk Bouillon, Miss Clara Thompson (Mrs Henry Bracy) as the demure Martha, and Mr Howard Vernon as the battered veteran, Colonel Cognac. The appearance of the new baritone was eagerly awaited by the crowded audience, as he had the difficult task of following a great favourite in such parts, Mr. Charles Ryley, who had taken his farewell of Australia at the same theatre on the previous night ...

Documentation: "MAIL NEWS", South Australian Chronicle (22 April 1893), 20

"Mr. Wallace Brownlow", Table Talk (22 June 1894), 6

"OPERA SINGER'S DEATH", The Argus (8 September 1919), 6

"WALLACE BROWNLOW'S SUICIDE", The Mercury (19 September 1919), 2 

Resources: "Wallace Brownlow", Wikipedia 

Songs: Without thy love (song written by Wallace Brownlow; composed by Charles Kenningham) (Melbourne: Allan and Co., [1899]) 

BRUCE, Donald


? Active Sydney, 1835 (but perhaps fictional)


"POLICE INCIDENTS", The Sydney Herald (5 February 1835), 2

BRUCE, Peter ("Captain")

Bagpiper, Highland dancer

Born Skye, Scotland, c.1817
Active Port Macquarie, NSW, by 1843
Active Beechworth, by 1855
Died near Benalla, VIC, 1 September 1889, aged "about 70" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (26 May 1855), 6

Mr. Peter Bruce will perform a grand Invocation of Scottish National Music, on the Scotch Pipes, in full Highland costume, as played before the Duke of Buccleuch and the whole court of Queen Victoria, in Scotland.

"THE SCOTTISH GAMES AT GEELONG", The Argus (4 January 1860), 5

"THE LATE CALEDONIAN GATHERING", The Argus (7 December 1860), 5

"THE BEECHWORTH CARNIVAL RICHARDSON'S SHOW", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (19 November 1873), 2 

... On Wednesday evening we dropt in again, and saw Messrs James Cunningham, James Kyle, Robert Spiers and Master Duncan dance a capital Scotch reel, to the bagpipe accompaniment of Mr. Peter Bruce; this went well with the audience ... Peter Bruce, the piper, played, as the Scotch folk said, brawley.

"THE EASTER FESTIVAL", The North Eastern Ensign (16 April 1884), 2

[News], The North Eastern Ensign (3 September 1889), 2

Mr. Peter Bruce, better known as "Captain" Bruce, a very old resident of Benalla district, died at his residence on Sunday last, the cause of death being a general break-up of the constitution. Deceased, who was about 70 years of age, was a native of the Highlands of Scotland, and settled down here at farming pursuits many years ago. Although an old man, he was fond of Caledonian sport, and was reckoned one of the best "pipers" in the colony. He was always noted for a genial nature, for his industry and energy in his capacity of farmer, and for a most neighborly and obliging disposition. His remains will be interred in the local cemetery to-day.

"A PIONEER FARMER", The Australasian (25 December 1926), 11 

The death of Gustavus Robert Bruce, of Yarrawonga, on December 9, 1926, removes the last and the original free selector in the parish of Yarrawonga ... His father, Peter Bruce, was born in the Isle of Skye, Scotland, and decided when 18 or 19 years of age to go to Australia, and sailed from Glasgow in 1826 for Sydney. He was then considered one of the best bagpipe players in Scotland, and received a great send-off from the Highlanders in Glasgow. Upon landing in Sydney he took service under Captain Innis, of the Imperial forces. His fame as a piper brought him in contact with all the distinguished Scotsmen of Sydney and he played at every gathering of note in that city. While in the service of Captain Innis, Peter Bruce married Christina Sanderson, and settled down to farming at Parramatta, where Robert was born. When gold was discovered in Victoria Peter Bruce, with his wife and young family and worldly possessions packed on two drays, each drawn by six bullocks, started off on the long bush journey. Bob, his eldest son, was not quite 11 years of age, but he drove one of those teams all the way to the Ovens diggings at Beechworth. Many hardships were encountered on the long journey; there were no roads or bridges, and provisions were difficult to obtain. They struck Gundagai just as the great flood was going down. Bob Bruce informed the writer that cattle and horses were up in the tops of trees at incredible heights. When he reached Beechworth Bob commenced prospecting on his own, and had some luck. His parents lived there for some years, and then left for Benalla to begin farming ...

Bibliography and resources:

Mundy 1852a, volume 2, 17, 23, 44-45 

[Port Macquarie, March 1847] ... here were dinner parties and dancing every evening, the chief music being furnished by a Highland bagpiper in full costume. In short, at this secluded bush-residence there was every luxury that could be found in the distant capital, except the polka! and that one of our party imported and imparted, to the immeasurable delight of a numerous bevy of pretty girls, the daughters and friends of the house.

[23] ... His [Major Innes's] overseer, the piper Bruce - of whom I have made honourable mention as incorporating within his own person and pipes the dancing orchestra of Lake Innes Cottage - resides at the inn, and makes what custom he can from the rare travellers on the road.

[44] ... The travellers, however, reached at sunset the hospitable roof of Lake Innes Cottage, where we recruited ourselves until the 22d. Bruce's bagpipes were in good wind and condition; the same may be said of the eight or nine young ladies in the house, who took [45] care that the Sydney gentlemen should not forget how to dance for want of practice ...

Boswell 1911, 56 

Boswell 1911, 61 

Thursday, 22nd June [1843] ... Bruce played some pibrochs early for Mr. Macleay's benefit. I had no idea the bagpipes could sound so beautiful, though I liked them at all times the sound is so different in the open air when the piper is walking up and down.

Boswell 1911, 67 

... in the fields grew oats and lucerne for hay also maize and Indian corn, Bruce having the charge or oversight of all.

Boswell 1911, 128 

John MacFadyen, "Piping in Skye", in The Skye: one hundred years 1865-1965 (Glasgow: J. MacGowan/McMillan, Graham and Pickering, [1965])

The only natives of Skye Alexander [Bruce] was on record as having been taught by the MacCrimmons were Alexander Bruce 1771-1840 and his brother John Bruce 1775-1847. Alexander was piper first to Capt. MacLeod of Gesto and afterwards to Mr. Bruce of Glenelg. Alexander Campbell, the Diarist, describes him in 1815 as a favourite pupil of Donald Ruadh MacCrimmon. He had three songs, John, Peter, and Malcolm, Malcolm was piper at Moy for a time while John and Peter went to Australia where they taught the Canntaireachd to the eccentric Simon Fraser.

Mackenzie 2009, 155, 156, 162

[156] [Simon Fraser] himself did not play the pipes seriously until he was 40 [1884-5]. He said he was then the only pupil of Peter Bruce, son of the great piper Alexander Bruce, who had been taught by both Gesto and Donald Ruadh MacCrimmon. Peter left his pipes to Simon in his will, an indication of a close teacher-pupil bond.

Bibliography and resources:,_Port_Macquarie,_New_South_Wales 

[accessed 9 July 2015] Annabella often referred to Bruce the piper who entertained the residents of the house ... [this] was Peter Bruce who came as a free settler from Scotland in about 1840. He was part of a family whose members were renowned for their ability to play the bagpipes and are mentioned in the texts on the history of piping. His father was Alexander Bruce (1771-1840) of Glenelg, Scotland who had been taught by the famous MacCrimmon pipers and his uncle John Bruce (1775-1847) was the piper to Sir Walter Scott. It is also mentioned in the texts that two of Alexander's sons Peter and John, who also played the bagpipes very well, immigrated to Australia. Although Peter played the pipes to entertain the guests he was also employed as a servant. Annabella mentions that he assists the butler serve at the table when required. However his main occupation seems to be a farmer as she says that "in the fields grew oats and lucerne for hay also maize and Indian corn, Bruce having the charge or oversight of all." At the time that Annabella wrote her diary in 1844 Peter Bruce was about to marry, Helen, her cousins maid. She mentions that the wedding of Bruce and Helen was held in the drawing-room. The bride was Helen Sanderson, a Scottish girl, who immigrated to Australia in about 1838. She was on board the same ship that Annabella's maid Christina Ross had taken to come to Australia. The couple had several children while they lived at Lake Innes and in the early 1850s they moved to the goldfields at Bathurst and then to Beechworth. Eventually they came to Benalla in Victoria where Peter bought some land and became a farmer. He continued playing the bagpipes and his obituary mentions that he was known "as one of the best pipers in the colony."


Annabella Boswell (Innes); teacher of Simon Fraser

BRUCE, Robert ("R. B.")

Songwriter, composer, poet, pastoralist

Born England 1835
Died North Adelaide, 4 November 1908, in his 73rd year


A pastoralist (at Wallelberdina and Coondambo), Bruce was a prolific poet, songwriter and novelist, active from the 1870s. Works include his story collection The dingos and other tales (Adelaide: Printed at the Advertiser and Chronicle offices, 1875) and a verse collection A voice from the Australian bush (Adelaide: Frearson and Bro., 1877)


"DEATHS", The Advertiser (5 November 1908), 8

"DEATH OF MR. ROBERT BRUCE", The Register (6 November 1908), 5

Robert Caldwell, "ROBERT BRUCE (The Poet of Coondambo)", The Advertiser (28 November 1908), 13

Musical works:

The mistletoe (song written and composed by Robert Bruce)

Whispering wind bring your message to me  (written and composed by Robert Bruce)

I am a zephyr free (song written and composed by Robert Bruce)

Let's be happy while we're young (song; words and music composed by R. Bruce; harmonized by Hans Bertram)


Singing instructor, schoolmaster

Active Melbourne, by 1849
Died NZ, 17 May 1900

1849: It is proposed to form a class for instruction in singing, on the Hullah system, with a view to the improvement of congregational psalmody. The class will be conducted, under the superintendence of the clergy of St. Peter's parish, bv Mr. Brunton, of the Church of England School, Collingwood, and will meet every Monday and Friday evening, at the Protestant Hall.

1856: A course of lectures on music, given gratuitously in this church by Mr. Brunton, of Collingwood, concluded on Thursday evening ... The instruction given has been of the most practical character, elucidating the beauties of the plain chaunt, which is so well adapted for the services of the Church of England.

1856/57: ... During the last few weeks, a class numbering nearly three hundred persons has met in Chalmers' Church for the practice of psalmody ... The conductor of these classes is a Mr. Brunton, whose skill as a teacher had been before commented in this Journal, and in other  publications. The present course consists of six lectures, and is preliminary to more extensive classes which the lecturer proposes to open in Melbourne and Collingwood ...

Petherick 1911: In the middle of the 'fifties there were a few private schools and three or four good public schools in Collingwood [including] Mr. Brunton's at St. Mark's ... Mr. Brunton's was considered the best, but being a dissenter he had soon to remove his "Eton" public school from St. Mark's to the United Free Methodist Chapel in George-street; and Mrs. Snow, wife of Alfred Snow, architect of Oxford-street Church, followed with her public school for girls to the school-room adjoining. Both schools had the same singing and drawing masters and received the most efficient teaching then in vogue in any Denomination. Mr. Brunton was a kind and considerate, though very strict master; a counsellor on whose judgment his elder pupils could rely with confidence; a master always associating with them as a friend and companion ... A large number of surviving pupils now scattered over the Commonwealth and New Zealand, still revere the memory of their old Master, Alfred Brunton.


"CONGREGATIONAL PSALMODY", The Argus (21 November 1849), 2



"AN EXPLANATION. To the Editor", The Argus (16 July 1856), 6

 "SERVICE OF SONG" [from Journal of Australasia, December 1856], Launceston Examiner (10 January 1857), 3

"ST. MARK'S SCHOOL COLLINGWOOD", The Argus (2 October 1858), 5

? "A BANKRUPT CLERGYMAN AND HIS CREDITORS", Bendigo Advertiser (16 November 1888), 3

? "NEW ZEALAND NEWS", The Queenslander (1 December 1888), 1012

"DEATH OF AN EVANGELIST", Wanganui Chronicle (18 May 1900), 2

Bibliography and resources:

Edward A. Petherick, "Early Collingwood: recollections of the 'fifties and 'sixties of last century", The Victorian Historical Magazine 1/1 (January 1911), 5-18  


Taught Edward Augustus Petherick (late 1850s)


Professor of dancing

Arrived Sydney, by April 1828
Died, Sydney, 28 February 1830, aged 40


Probably a son of the English theatrical entrepreneur, Thomas Brunton, lately "Ballet Master at the King's theatre, London", also "late Ballet master of the Surrey Theatre", was recently arrived and teaching dancing in Sydney in April 1828. According to the Monitor, in May he had been engaged to be "ballad [sic] master" at Levi's new Sydney Amateur Theatre. He advertised regularly in the press through 1829. However, he died on 28 February 1830 after being thrown by his horse. His inquest heard that "Mr. Brunton was a man of cheerful, social habits, and just 40 years of age. He married, only three or four months ago, the young widow of the late Mr. William Underwood, whose death, in several particulars, resembled that of the unfortunate Mr. B." As a result for Brunton's death, a Mrs. Raine advertised that she would be opening a dancing school. Brunton's wife, Mary, died 2 years later.


[News], The Monitor (19 April 1828), 7

[Advertisement], The Australian (14 May 1828), 1

[News], The Monitor (21 May 1828), 5

[News], The Horbart Town Courier (28 June 1828), 4

"TO THE EDITOR", The Monitor (3 November 1828), 8

"MARRIAGES", The Asiatic Journal (August 1830), 226

"SUDDEN DEATH OF MR. BRUNTON", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (2 March 1830), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (13 April 1830), 1

"DIED", The Sydney Herald (24 May 1832), 4


Vocalist (pupil of Cutolo)

Active Adelaide, SA, 1859-60


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (13 June 1859), 1

"SIGNOR CUTOLO'S CONCERT", The South Australian Advertiser (16 June 1859), 2

... The piece which followed was a trio - "Desolate is the dwelling of Norma"- by Miss Rowe, Mr. Daniel, and Miss Bryan; the latter an amateur vocalist, and this her first appearance in public. The performance of this piece was loudly encored. Miss Bryan displayed some excellent and accurate tones of voice, as well as a degree of animation which indicated proficiency in her part and taste in its delivery. A solo on the harp by Miss Horn, selected from Meyerbeer, followed. Miss Bryan then sung "Bright things can never die." Throughout both of these songs she developed tones of voice and an animation in her delivery which took the spectators quite by surprise. She was interrupted several times by the applause of the audience, and was enthusiastically called upon for an encore, when she substituted "I do not ask," which was rendered in an unexceptionable manner and with great feeling. We venture to state that for volume of tone and expression in delivery this young lady has not her equal in the colony.

"SIGNOR CUTOLO'S CONCERT", The South Australian Advertiser (9 November 1859), 2

"SOUTH AUSTRALIA", The Argus (30 November 1859), 3

"SIGNOR CUTOLO'S FAREWELL CONCERT", South Australian Register (5 December 1859), 3

"SOUTH AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE", The South Australian Advertiser (31 May 1860), 3

"WHITE'S ROOMS", South Australian Register (22 December 1860), 3

BRYAN, Thomas


Arrived Fremantle, 1863
Died Launceston, TAS, 16 February 1896, aged 76

BRYAN, Thomas


Active Perth, WA
Died Melbourne, VIC, 10 May 1901, aged 49


"AMATEUR THEATRICALS", The Inquirer & Commercial News (5 September 1866), 2

"PERTH BAND", The Inquirer & Commercial News (10 October 1866), 3

[News], The Perth Gazette (8 January 1869), 2

"OBITUARY", Launceston Examiner (17 February 1896), 4

"BANDMASTER BRYAN. DEATH FROM HEART DISEASE", West Australian Sunday Times (12 May 1901), 1

"DEATHS", The West Australian (5 June 1901), 4

BRYANT, Master

Boy vocalist

Active Melbourne, 1864-65


[Advertisement], The Argus (9 November 1864), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 May 1865), 8


Vocalist, lecturer on national music

Active Brisbane, NSW (QLD), 1850-51

1850:  For nearly three hours Mr. Buchanan entertained his audience by alternately tracing from history the antiquity and power of music, and illustrating its effects upon the feelings through the means of national airs. The songs were English, Irish, and Scotch. Mr. Buchanan has a clear and pleasing voice, more particularly adapted to the plaintive old airs of Scotland and Ireland.


"SCHOOL OF ARTS", The Moreton Bay Courier (5 January 1850), 2

"MUSICAL LECTURE", The Moreton Bay Courier (26 January 1850), 2

"LECTURE ON MUSIC", The Moreton Bay Courier (4 May 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Moreton Bay Courier (4 January 1851), 3

[Advertisement], The Moreton Bay Courier (27 April 1850), 1

BUCK, Frederick (BÜCKE)

Pianist, organist, composer

Born Germany 1827
Arrived Australia c. early 1850s
Died Tasmania, December 1901, aged 74

Obituary: Herr Frederick Buck died on Saturday, aged 74. Though feeble from declining years, he had, up to within a few days of his death, been able to keep about in the open air, and his end was somewhat unexpected. He was an old Tasmanian resident, having arrived here some 50 years ago, and as a talented musician he occupied a prominent and useful position in the community, and had at one time possessed a nice little property in the Glenorchy district, where he had hoped to find a permanent home. Misfortunes, however, befell him. He accepted the position of immigration agent for the Tasmanian Government, went home to his native country, and was instrumental in bringing to the colony many useful German families, who, settling down to industrial pursuits, have become prosperous members of the community. The undertaking did not bring much profit to Herr Buck, but rather involved him in trouble, the result of his too sanguine aspirations to do something that should place his name on the scroll of fame. Meanwhile, his position as one of the premier musicians of Tasmania became weakened. Younger and more pushing competitors entered the field, and, with advancing years, the once popular musician, step by step, dropped into the rear ranks, and friends became few. He was a good linguist, and accomplished in many ways outside his musical profession, and as long as he had means, was liberal handed, even beyond the limits of discretion. His name will long be honoured with that of Herr Schott. They were contemporaries in musical circles some twenty years ago, and both, in their special spheres, did much to advance musical culture in Hobart.


[Advertisement], "NEW MUSIC. TOR SALE AT THE GUARDIAN OFFICE", Portland Guardian (21 May 1866), 3

"OBITUARY", The Mercury (30 December 1901), 2

Musical works:

The young recruit march ("Introducing Kucken's favorite air, for the pianoforte") (Hobart: J. Walch, [by 1866]); copy at SL-TAS; Trove Bookmark

BUCKE, Walter Francis

Baritone (pupil of Garcia and Santley, London), Teacher of Singing

Arrived Melbourne, by April 1873 (with Arabella Goddard)

BUCKE, Isa (Mrs. W. F. BUCKE; Miss STEELE)

Pianist (pupil of Hartmann of Leipsic), Teacher of Pianoforte

1878: Walter Francis Bucke, 30, was charged at the Adelaide Criminal Court, on the 15th, with attempting to procure abortion. Prisoner pleaded not guilty, and was defended by Mr. T. K. Pater. His Honor called attention to the circumstance that prisoner had been committed on the charge of wilful murder, and he asked Mr. Pater if he was prepared to meet the reduced charge ...

Documentation:  [Advertisement], The Argus (28 April 1873), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (31 May 1873), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (31 December 1873), 2

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (17 October 1876), 1

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (1 June 1877), 2

[Advertisement], Northern Argus (3 November 1876), 3

"ARREST OF F. W. BUCKE AT ALBURY", The Goulburn Herald (24 November 1877), 7

"POLICE COURTS", South Australian Register (27 November 1877), 3

"The Charge against Bucke the Musician", Evening News (21 March 1878), 2


Vocalists and instrumentalists

Active Australia, 1830s-60s


Comedian, actor, vocalist

Born England, c.1810
Arrived Sydney, by mid 1833
Died ?

BUCKINGHAM, George (junior)

Comedian, actor, vocalist

Died (drowned) Croisilles Harbour, NZ, 19 August 1864

BUCKINGHAM, Ann Jane (b. 1835)


BUCKINGHAM, George (junior)

Comedian, actor, vocalist

Died (drowned) Croisilles Harbour, NZ, 19 August 1864


Died (drowned) Croisilles Harbour, NZ, 19 August 1864


Buckingham, who described himself as a "comedian", married Anne JESSOP in Sydney on 21 July 1834, and their daughter, Rosetta (later Mrs. Bully HAYES), was born in 1843. Buckingham was based in New Zealand after 1843, but also continued to work in Australia.

Wagga 1859: This very talented family arrived here on Saturday and played on the same night to a crowded house. at Mr. Byrnes' Hotel. Their fame came before them and therefore it was not to be wondered at, claiming as they did at a few hours notice, the numerous attendance that appeared in the saloon of the Hotel. This clearly demonstrates how the good people of' Wagga Wagga are desirous of patronising anything in the shape of genuine talent. It is needless to speak of their ability, as their claims have been acknowledged in every town and by every person who may have heard them. The public press also has been lavish in their praise. The precosity of the juvenile portion of the family are astonishing. Master Walter in particular, as the "0ld Musketeer". There he may be seen with the violin, again at the flute, then at the. piano; in fact he seems au fait in whatever may come in his way. Then we have the picaninny, whose "Billy Crow" is the most comical thing our readers can imagine. "Barber Brown," "Beautiful Boy," "Paddy Malone," are all of the same class. His performance on the flute in company with his brothers is excellent. Again where shall we find a better player than the elder son George on the flute? Who can forget the exquisite tones in that beautiful melody "Home, sweet home," rendered by him, with others of a similar character. We must not forget to make particular mention of Miss Rosa Buckingham, whose performance on the piano, (which was kindly lent for the occasion by George Forsyth, Esq.), was excellent; she also sang the song of "Molly Asthore." On Wednesday evening the performance took place in the large ball room attached to Mr Fox's Squatters' Hotel, and notwithstanding the heavy rain the room was crowded ...


[Letter] "To the editors", The Sydney Herald (18 July 1833), 2

[Letter] "To the editors", Empire (17 September 1856), 7

"THE BUCKINGHAM FAMILY", Wagga Wagga Express (29 January 1859), 2


Bibliography and resources:

"Buckingham, George and Buckingham, Rosetta", Te Ara (Encyclopedia of New Zealand) 


Teachers of the Pianoforte, Italian and English Singing, Dancing

Active Hobart, 1841-42


[Advertising], The Courier (27 August 1841), 1

[Advertising], Colonial Times (16 August 1842), 1

BUCKLEY, Florence (Mrs. CARTER)

Pianist, accompanist, piano teacher (pupil of Louis Pabst)

Active Melbourne, by 1885
Died Hampton, VIC, 9 February 1934


"ST. GEORGE'S CATHOLIC SCHOOLS", Fitzroy City Press (21 November 1885), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 April 1892), 12

"OBITUARY", The Argus (13 February 1934), 6


Violinist, fiddler

Active Launceston, 1854


"WHAT IS A MUSICIAN", The Cornwall Chronicle (3 June 1854), 5

What is a Musician?- In answer to a question put by the Chairman of Quarter Sessions during the trial of John Beck, to a witness named Bucknell, concerning the mode in which he earned his living, witness replied that he was a musician. The Chairman, "What is commonly called a fiddler?" Witness, - "Yes Sir."  It appears Bucknell procures a livelihood by playing the violin in the tap-rooms of public-houses.

BUDD, Thomas

Bandmaster, sax-a-phonist (for the first time in Sydney)

Active Sydney, by 1869
Died Sydney, 5 October 1874

1869: On Monday evening the Philharmonic Society gave their first grand concert for the season, in the hall of the Exchange; the programme was an attractive one, and the spacious room was filled to the doors. Mr. Budd's (for the first time in Sydney) "Sax-a-phone", was evidently appreciated by the audience, who insisted upon an encore.


"SYDNEY CORRESPONDENCE", The Maitland Mercury (5 June 1869), 2

"M. GUILLAUME JONSON'S CONCERT", Bell's Life in Sydney (7 August 1869), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 December 1869), 9

"COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 July 1872), 5

"FUNERALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 October 1874), 8

"NAVAL BRIGADE FUNERAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 October 1874), 4

[News], Illustrated Sydney News (17 October 1874), 15

BUDDEE, Julius

Professor of Music

Born Germany, c.1823
Arrived Adelaide, 28 March 1849 (per Louise, from Hamburg);
Arrived Melbourne, by July 1849
Died, Glebe Point, NSW, 9 September 1890, aged 67 years


Obituary: THE news of the death of Mr. Julius Buddee will be received with sincere regret in musical circles. For many years he was esteemed in Melbourne as one of the first among teachers of the pianoforte, besides being recognised as a truly artistic performer of classical music. Failing health led him to remove to Sydney some four years ago, since which time he has held a high place among the professional musicians of this city. Growing weakness has been apparent for some time, but he was sufficiently well on Monday to continue teaching throughout the day, and the announcement of his decease at about 3 a.m. yesterday caused no less surprise than sorrow.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (28 March 1849), 3

[2 advertisements], The Argus (7 July 1849), 3

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 September 1890), 1

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 September 1890), 7

[News], The Argus (29 September 1890), 5

BUIST, David

Music retailer and publisher, pianoforte and harmonium makers, repairers and tuners

Died Stanmore, NSW, 26 October 1876, in his 71st year

BUIST, William David

BUIST, George

BUIST, Richard

Piano tuner

Died 1886


David Buist traded as "D. Buist and Sons", from 6 Bridge Street, from as early as 1852, with (? his brother) Richard also as a partner until 1855. By October 1857 they had moved to 254 George Street (in some advertisements in 1858 as "David Buist and Son"), remaining there until after June 1862, relocating to 235 George Street by October 1862. The firm was dissolved by the partners, David and William, on 23 March 1874. David died in 1876.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 October 1849), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 April 1855), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 June 1852), 1

"MARRIAGE", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 August 1856), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 October 1857), 10

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 November 1858), 1

Advertisement]: "JUST PUBLISHED, CORNSTALK GALOP", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 April 1859), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (13 April 1859), 3

"ALARMING FIRE IN GEORGE STREET", The Sydney Morning Herald (6 February 1860), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 June 1862), 12

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 October 1862), 1

"LAW. SUPREME COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 July 1863), 5

[Advertisement], Illawarra Mercury (3 October 1865), 3

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 December 1866), 1

"LAW. SUPREME COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 May 1868), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 April 1874), 4

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 October 1876), 1

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 August 1888), 1

Musical publications:
Good News from Home ("Second Edition"; "As sung by Christie's Minstrels") (Sydney : D. Buist & Son's Pianoforte & Harmonium Warerooms, [between 1858 and 1861?]; the almost identical first edition had been issued by Henry Marsh and Co. in 1859, followed by a Marsh "second edition" in November 1859)
SPAGNOLETTI, Ernesto snr, The Cornstalk Galop ("Respectfully dedicated to his pupils, Spagnoletti, R.A.")) (Sydney: D. Buist and Son, [1859])
SPAGNOLETTI, Ernesto snr, The Cornstalk Polka ("as played every night at the Prince of Wales Theatre by Winterbottom's celebrated band"). ([Sydney: D. Buist and Son, 1859]; NO COPY IDENTIFIED ("polka" perhaps a misprint for the above Galop)

BULCH, Thomas Edward (Mr. T. E. Bulch)

Musician, bandmaster, composer

Born 1862/3
Died Mascot, NSW, 13 November 1930, aged 67

Pseudonyms include: LASKI, Henri (from 1892)
Les fleurs d'Australie Valse (composed by Henri Laski; arr. by Tom Howard)

Other pseudonyms: Arthur Godfrey, Eugene Lacosta, Arthur Laski, Godfrey Parker, Henri Laski, Pat Cooney, Carl Volti, Theo Bonheur, Charles Le Thiere.


Pre 1900 works include: The Jubilee March (1887); Grand march, The giant (1887) Grand march, The typhoon ( 1887) Tonguing polka, The gumsucker (1887) March, The battle of Eureka (1891) Happy thoughts schottische

Postman's parade quick march

Austral overture (by 1894); later printed edition (band parts)

Austral Overture


"JUBILEE MARCH", Portland Guardian (10 June 1887), 2

"BRASS BAND CONTEST. TO THE EDITOR", South Australian Register (3 October 1887), 6

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (3 October 1887), 1

; "ROTUNDA CONCERT", South Australian Register (4 October 1887), 5

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (20 February 1891), 1

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (13 August 1894), 5

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 March 1898), 4

"A.N.A. BAND CONTEST. A CHAT WITH MR. BULCH", The Advertiser (29 January 1902), 6

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 November 1930), 14

Bibliography and resources: Eric S. Tomkins, Thomas Edward Bulch, musician: a family history  (rev. ed.: Castle Hill: Author, 2009)


Pianoforte pupil (of Henry Witton)

Active Melbourne, 1862


[Advertisement], The Courier [Brisbane] (24 October 1862), 1

"F. BULL (Pianoforte), Smith-St., Collingwood." [pupil of Henry James Witton]

BUNCE, Mrs. James

Professor of Music, vocalist

Active Ballarat, 1860s


"NEWS AND NOTES", The Star (14 August 1863), 2

A new amateur presented himself [sic] last evening in the person of Mrs. James Bunce, who sang the beautiful and rather glowing song from Bishop Bid me discourse and sang it so well to be encored. Mrs. Bunce has long been known as an accomplished musician in private circles and her appearance in public last night proved that she has a faculty for pleasing a still larger circle.

"NEWS AND NOTES", The Star (18 August 1863), 2

"CHRIST CHURCH ORGAN", The Star (15 November 1864), 2

Ballarat and Ballarat District Directory (1865), 44, 183

BURDON, George

Musician, band musician

Active Melbourne, 1850


"THE VAGRANT ACT", The Argus (12 December 1850), 2 George Burdon ... was charged ... with being a vagrant, having been fourteen days in Melbourne without having any other visible means of subsistence that that of going about from one public-house to another playing "music" and asking alms. The defendant arrived from Van Diemen's Land in company with four others of the same stamp, who figured at the Collingwood Election as "a band of musicians" ...

BURGESS, Joseph Bird

Violinist, orchestra leader, composer

Active Bendigo, by 1856
Died Geelong, VIC, 20 March 1907, aged 77

1856: Sir-Will you be kind enough to allow me to correct an error that appeared in your issue of this morning, relative to my ball. The "Octavia Polka" was written by Mr. E. Salaman and not by me as you have stated. The "Casey Polka" was composed by me for the same occasion, and both Polkas were produced for the first lime, at the opening ball, Wellington Hotel, Epsom. Trusting you will excuse me for so far trespassing on your valuable space, I am. Sir. Yours obediently, JOSEPH BURGESS, Late of Mons. Jullien and Winterbottom's Bands. Epsom, 22nd Jan., 1856

1870: We hear that two more songs of Mr Burgess' are in the hands of the publishers. He is also preparing a volume of his sacred compositions for the press, which is to be published by subscription.


"ORIGINAL CORRESPONDENCE. To the Editor", Bendigo Advertiser (24 January 1856), 3

"THE MASONIC BALL. To the Editor", Bendigo Advertiser (25 June 1859), 3

"OUR MUSICAL TALENT", Bendigo Advertiser (6 August 1859), 2

"NEW INSOLVENTS", The Argus (21 March 1860), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (20 March 1870), 4

[News], The Argus (19 July 1870), 5

"NEW SONG", Bendigo Advertiser (23 July 1870), 2

[News], The Argus (11 November 1870), 5

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (1 April 1907), 6

Published works:

Rest, rest, thou gentle sea (new song, composed and dedicated, by special permission, to His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh, by Joseph Bird Burgess, of Moama) ([Melbourne: Paling, 1870])

The stars sink one by one from night (song; the poetry from the Dublin University Magazine) (Melbourne: Troedel, [1870])

A selection of sacred music (composed, arranged & dedicated to Viscount Canterbury, KCB, by Joseph Bird Burgess) (? London: Chappell & Co., [? 1875-6])

The Ulupna Schottische ([?]: [?], [?])

BURGH, Henry (Henry de BURGH)

Amateur vocalist, pianist, composer

Born 1816
Arrived Perth, 21 July 1841 (per James Matthews, from London)
Departed Perth, 1846 (for England) Died 1876


"FREEMASONRY", The Perth Gazette (28 December 1844), 2

The intervals between the toasts were occupied by the performance of some choice music, amongst which was an original glee for four equal voices, written for the occasion by Brother Henry Burgh, who presided at the piano. This very able production was beautifully sung by the brethren.


The usual Masonic toasts were given, and cordially responded to, accompanied by some excellent songs and glees, performed by several of the Brethren, and appropriate to the sentiment of each; among the rest, a Masonic glee, composed expressly for this occasion by Brother Henry Burgh, and which is acknowledged on all hands to be a composition of very great musical merit. A very beautifully executed copy of this glee was presented to Brother Hutt, and as it is unquestionably worthy of publication in any part of the world, we look to have the pleasure of some day seeing it in print, when we are sure it will become a universal favourite among the brethren.

"WESTERN AUSTRALIA", Freemason's Quarterly Magazine (30 September 1845), 369

"CHORAL SOCIETY'S CONCERT", The Inquirer (20 January 1869), 3

There are still many among us who remember the charming concerts given long since in Perth, and to which Mr. and Mrs. Symmons, Mr. Wittenoom, Mr. Stone, Mr. Schoales, Mr. Lochée, Mr. H. deBurgh, and Mrs. Maycock contributed their great and varied talents.

Bibliography and resources:

Henry de Burgh's Diary (28 March 1841-3 February 1844, from England to the Avon Valley, WA)

The Celtic Lodge, Edinburgh and Leith, No.291, Extract of Minutes 1841 - 1846

28th November 1846 ... Bro The Honourable Henry Burgh, Naas, Ireland, 712 Western Australia Lodge was admitted an Honorary Member of the Celtic Lodge.

Note: For an earlier Masonic Glee. see 2 pages after 472

BURKE, Peter Constantine

Piano tuner, professor of music (son of John Burke, A.R.A.M)

Active northern VIC and southern NSW, by 1880
Died Laceby, VIC, 18 March 1901, "A colonist of 48 years."

BURKE, Peter Constantine, Junior

Piano tuner, pianist, amateur vocalist

Active northern VIC and southern NSW, by 1894, later QLD

1880-10-16:  Piano Tuner. - Mr P. C. Burke announces in our advertising columns that he intends visiting Hay about 23rd inst. He bears first class testimonials, and is confidently recommended by Nicholson and Ascherberg as an excellent tuner.

1894-04-26: Mr. P. C. Burke, junr., piano tuner, announces that he is at present on his periodical round through Narandera, Coolamon, Junee, and the Wagga districts, and may be expected in this town shortly.

1901-03-22: WANGARATTA. The death occurred at Laceby on Monday morning of Mr Peter C. Burke, at the age of 65 years. He was born at Drogheda, Ireland, being the only son of Mr John Burke, A.R.A.M., professor of music. He came to the colony when he was 20 years old, and followed the profession of music. He was well known throughout the North-Eastern District as a piano forte tuner. He was a resident of Killawarra, where he has reared a large family of sons and daughters. He was well known in the Benalla district, where the news of his death was much regretted.

1909-06-01: The death is reported as having occurred at her residence, Wangaratta, on Thursday last of Mrs P C. Burke, at the age of 76 years ... The late Mrs Burke, who was well known and highly respected in this and the Samaria district was born in Glasgow in 1833. In 1852, with her uncle Captain Gilfillan, and his widowed sister. she came to Victoria in the ship Progress and the next year she was married by the late Canon Handfield at St. Peter's Church Eastern Hill, to the late Mr. P. C. Burke who for twelve months followed his profession as a musician. Then, accompanied by his wire, he visited a number of gold rushes, and finally they settled at Beechworth. Mrs. Burke's husband predeceased her about eight years ago, and after his death Mrs. Burke and her daughter Miss Marie Burke, resided in Wangaratta, Mrs. Burke was the mother of ten children, five of whom are living, viz Mr. P. C. Burke, of Ideraway, Queensland ... The deceased lady was noted for her kindly and cheerful disposition, and her unostentatious charity. She was a most attentive and kindly mother, and sympathy is tendered to the members of the family in their deprivation. The remains were interred in the Wangaratta cemetery on Saturday.


[Advertisement], The Riverine Grazier (16 October 1880), 2

[News], Euroa Advertiser (13 May 1887), 2

"Marriages", The Argus (2 April 1891), 1

[News], Wagga Wagga Advertiser (26 April 1894), 2

"WANGARATTA", Benalla Standard (22 March 1901), 3

"DEATHS", The Argus (25 March 1901), 1

"CONCERT AT THOONA", Benalla Standard (27 August 1907), 3

"MRS. P. C. BURKE", Benalla Standard (1 June 1909), 2 

BURKITT, Adelaide (Annie)

Pianist, teacher

Active Melbourne, by 1888
Died Melbourne, 10 April 1945


[Advertisement], The Argus (23 July 1888), 12

"DEATHS", The Argus (11 April 1945), 2

"DEATHS", The Argus (13 April 1945), 2

"MUSICAL SACRILEGE [To the editor]", The Argus (15 October 1942), 5


Pupil of Louis Pabst; teacher of Percy Grainger

BURN, David (Edmund David BURN) ("Tasso Australasiatticus")

Playwright, songwriter

Born Scotland, c.1798/9
Active Australia 1826-29, 1830-36, 1841-45
Died North Shore, Auckland, NZ, 15 June 1875 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

BURNE, Hewetson


Active (? Queensland), 1886-92


"New Music", Queensland Figaro and Punch (12 February 1887), 3

Musical works:

The Pioneer Schottische, or, The Alligator Hop (by Hewetson Burne) (Melbourne : Gordon & Gotch, [1886/7]) ("Performed by the Band of the Grenadier Guards at the Colonial & Indian Exhibition, dedicated to the pioneers of Australia")

There's something about 'er as fetches yer (written by Bert Royle; composed by Hewetson Burne) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., [by 1892])

BURNS, William (alias Edward Byrne)

Singing teacher

Active Bendigo, VIC, 1865


"A CHARGE OF ABDUCTION", Bendigo Advertiser (13 October 1865), 2

"ABDUCTION", Bendigo Advertiser (13 October 1865), s2

"CHARGE OF ABDUCTION", The Argus (23 October 1865), 6

BURNETT, George W.

Professor of music

Active Sydney, NSW, 1863


[Law reports], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 January 1863), 5


Band sergeant (Band of the 40th Regiment)

Died Melbourne, VIC, 31 April 1857 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"VICTORIA", The Cornwall Chronicle (6 May 1857), 3

James Burnett, band sergeant of the 40th Regiment, died on Thursday morning from disease of the brain. The deceased, though comparatively a young man, served with the regiment at Candahar, Ghusnes, Cabul, and Maharajapore, and was decorated with a medal and bronze star.


Band of the 40th Regiment (second tour)



Born Ottery St Mary, Devon, England, 1862
Arrived Australia, 1875
Died Melbourne, 1937

Brisbane 1888: Mr. Frank Burrough, the well-known flute soloist of this city, has just accepted an engagement in the orchestra of the Melbourne Centennial Exhibition. We learn that Mr. Burrough does not intend returning to Brisbane; his departure will therefore create a gap in the musical circle which will not be readily filled.


[birth and death details provided by a family historian]; "BRISBANE LIEDERTAFEL CONCERT", The Brisbane Courier (5 November 1885), 6

"MARRIAGES", The Brisbane Courier (4 January 1886), 1

"The Deutscher Club ...", The Brisbane Courier (6 February 1888), 5

[News], The Queenslander (23 June 1888), 965

"THE ORCHESTRA", The Argus (2 August 1888), 5s


Centennial Exhibition Orchestra (player)


Schoolmaster, teacher of vocal music

Active Launceston, TAS, by February 1853
Died Warrnambool, VIC, 24 July 1881, aged 58

1853: MR. D. BURSTON. from St. John's College, Battersea, London, respectfully begs to inform the inhabitants of Launceston and its vicinity, that he will open the School Building situated in Franklin-street, on Monday next, the 31st January, to commence the following course of instruction to youth in the above-named locality;- Reading, Spelling, Writing, Dictation, Arithmetic, Composition, Grammar, Geography, Map Drawing, Vocal Music, (Sewing, Knitting and Marking, to girls) &c. Terms:- ... An Evening Singing Class will be formed for Ladies and Gentlemen in the centre of the town as soon as the names of parties have been received, on Professor Hullah's, or the sol. fa. system. Terms, £1 1s. per quarter.


[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (2 February 1853), 87

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (21 April 1853), 2

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (2 June 1853), 6

"ST. JOHN'S SCHOOL", The Cornwall Chronicle (23 December 1854), 4

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (29 August 1857), 5

"WARRNAMBOOL", The Argus (26 July 1881), 6

"DEATHS", Illustrated Australian News (24 August 1881), 158

BURTON, Henry (see also Blythe WATERLAND)

Vocalist, showman, circus performer, proprietor of Burton's Band

Born England, 1823
Arrived Adelaide, 23 December 1849 (per Constant, from London)
Died Fitzroy, VIC, 9 March 1900, aged 76

Mudgee, NSW, 1852: Mr. Burton's band ably performed their part as musicians, relieved occasionally by some of the ladies, who sung, and played upon the piano to admiration. Mr. Nathan, from Sydney, likewise played and sung to the great delight of the company.

Mount Barker, SA, 1856: Tuesday. November 4. Before Dr. Walker, J.P., and Mr. Lachlan Macfarlane. J.P. Jacob Young, Jacob Düne, Conrad Sander, Heinrich Rodenbout, Carl Leonhardt, Daniel Müller, and Christian Prothenbuck, known as "Burton's Band", appeared to answer the complaint of Mr. Henry Burton, for that they having contracted to serve the said Henry Burton as musicians, and having entered into his service, did neglect and refuse to fulfil the same. Henry Burton, sworn, said the defendants, who had played for him in Victoria, were engaged by his agent to play for him in Adelaide and South Australia at £16 per week, their own terms (agreement put in and acknowledged). That the day before the Circus left Port Adelaide, after they had received their week's wages, £16 (receipt put in), they said they would not go into the country with witness, unless he paid them £3 per week extra. ... The defendants were ordered to return to their duties and pay the costs, or to be committed to Gaol for one month. They paid the costs and promised to return to their duties.

Obituary: MR. HENRY BURTON, who was well-known in the early days as the proprietor of Burton's Circus, died at the Dramatic Homes on March 9, and was buried in the St. Kilda Cemetery. Mr. Burton, at one period of his life, had become fairly wealthy, and in his opulence he acquired quite a reputation for his extensive charities. He afterwards met with reverses (says a Melbourne paper), and about eighteen months ago found shelter in the institution for which he himself had done so much.


"ARRIVED", South Australian Register (26 December 1849), 3

"MUDGEE", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 May 1852), 3

"MOUNT BARKER", South Australian Register (7 November 1856), 3

"ARRIVED", South Australian Register (19 September 1859), 2

"DRAGGED", South Australian Register (22 November 1869), 2

"DEATHS", The Argus (12 March 1900), 1

"MR. HENRY BURTON", Bathurst Free Press (19 March 1900), 3

Bibliography and resources: Ruth Teale, Burton, Henry (1823-1900), Australian dictionary of biography 3 (1969)



BUSHELLE, John (senior)

BUSHELLE, John Butler (junior)

BUSHELLE, Tobias Vincent

See main entry

Eliza and John Bushelle and family

Four members of one of colonial Australia's most important musical families: former convict and bass-singer John Bushell ("Bushelle" from 1839), his wife Eliza, sister of William Vincent Wallace, and their sons Toby and John. Other musical relatives of Eliza in Australia included her brother, Spencer Wellington Wallace, father Spencer Wallace, and cousins Francis Ellard (and his son Frederick Ellard), Maria Logan (Ellard), and Marian Chester. Thomas Leggatt, Francis Ellard's brother-in-law, has also been reported to be a cousin. The Sydney soprano Hilda Mulligan (active 20th-century) was reportedly a grand-daughter of Eliza.


Professor of Music, harpist, pianist

Active Melbourne, 1854-57


Buxton, late member of the Philharmonic Society, a pupil of Henri Rosellen and J. Balsir Chatterton, Harpist to the Queen, advertised in August 1853 as a teacher of the Pianoforte, Harp, Organ, and Singing, having taught in Liverpool for the previous 8 years; on his first concert appearance in Melbourne in February 1854, he was also described as "from the Royal Academy of Music".

Documentation: [Advertisement], The Argus (1 August 1853), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 February 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (11 February 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 September 1855), 7

BYRNE, Stephen

Trombonist (honorary secretary, Hallas's Band), printer
Active Bendigo, by 1860


"MUNICIPAL POLICE COURT", Bendigo Advertiser (15 May 1860), 2

 "PRESENTATION TO CAPTAIN SKENE", Bendigo Advertiser (16 September 1863), 2

"THE PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", Bendigo Advertiser (18 November 1865), 2

BYRNE, George (alias)

Violinist, musician

Active Melbourne, 1856


"INDECENT ASSAULT", The Argus (27 September 1856), 6

"INDECENT ASSAULT", The Argus (30 September 1856), 5

"A TWO FOOTED BEAST", The Maitland Mercury (7 October 1856), 3

The person described on the charge sheet, under the assumed name of George Byrne, but who is really a German, and one of the first violinists in the colony, and who was convicted at the City Police Court on Friday, of grossly indecent conduct towards two girls attending the Colingwood National Schools, was again brought up on Saturday. The prisoner had been remanded in consequence of it being understood that there were several more cases against him ...

© Graeme Skinner 2014 - 2017