Hugh Davidson (composer)
|This article relies largely or entirely upon a single source. (March 2010)|
Hugh Hanson Davidson (born 27 May 1930, Montreal) is a Canadian composer, music critic, radio producer, writer, and arts administrator. His compositional output includes works for piano, ballets, chamber music, vocal art songs, choral works, and incidental music for the theatre.
Davidson is a graduate of The Royal Conservatory of Music where he studied from 1945-1948. His teachers there included George Crum in piano and Godfrey Ridout in music composition. In 1951 he went to England to pursue further studies in composition with Bernard Stevens and Humphrey Searle. After four years, he returned to Canada where he worked as a composer and studied orchestration with Neil Chotem in Montreal.
From 1956 to 1961 Davidson was a radio producer for CBC Montreal's English network, moving to their French network in 1962 where he worked for three years as a supervisor of music. He was then appointed assistant program director at CBC Montreal in 1965, a position he held for four years. In 1966 he helped found the Société de musique contemporaine du Québec. In 1967 he worked for the Canadian Pavilion at Expo 67 as their music consultant. He worked for the BBC in London from 1969–1971 and then returned to Canada to become music administrator of the National Arts Centre (1971–1973). He was appointed head of music at the Canada Council in 1973, where he remained until he became cultural councillor to the Canadian High Commission in London in 1978. From 1981-1988 he served as general manager of the Canada Council's Touring Office. After leaving there he has worked as a consultant to various arts organizations in the Vancouver area.
Davidson has worked as a music critic for the British magazine Music and Musicians and for several publications in Montreal including The Gazette and Montréal-Matin. He has also written program notes for numerous ensembles, including the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, and the Pro Musica Society of Montreal. From 1956-1960 he was the assistant editor of the Jeunesses musicales du Canada's music journal.
Davidson retired to Victoria, BC; there he has served for many years as a supporter and advisor to the Victoria Symphony.