Eric Gilder

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Eric Gilder (25 December 1911 – 1 June 2000) was an English musicologist. He was a composer, teacher, conductor and pianist.

Brief biography[edit]

Eric Gilder began his career as a teacher at a London music college that some years later was renamed as the Eric Gilder School of Music. He trained at the Royal College of Music in London where he studied under John Ireland, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Constant Lambert and Sir Malcolm Sargent from 1936 until he went into war service.

He is remembered with gratitude by the poet and musician Labi Siffre in his poem "education education education". Siffre studied at Gilders school as did Richard Wright of Pink Floyd, Ebo Taylor (Stargazers and Broadway) and Teddy Osei, founder member of Osibisa, a band that played a central role in developing an awareness of African music in the 1970s.


As a composer he composed extensively for the orchestra, voices, theatre and television. He served as a choral conductor and appeared at the Royal Festival Hall in London as a conductor and pianist.

He was a pupil at Henry Thornton School, Clapham, from 1926 until 1931 and composed the original school song.

Selected Works[edit]

  • Seascape (for piano and orchestra) (1939)
  • The Tide (for soprano, baritone, chorus, organ and orchestra) (1945)
  • Christmas Sounds (for soli, chorus and orchestra) (1950)
  • Nursery Suite (for orchestra) (1953)
  • A Sea Suite (for orchestra) (1954)
  • A Processional Overture (1975)
  • Sonata for Violin and Piano (1979)
  • Three Pastorals (for orchestra) (1981)


Eric was also a prominent lecturer and he also wrote books on a variety of music subjects.


Eric Gilder - Dictionary Of Composers and their music - Sphere 1985