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Contributor


Vernon Griffiths

Arranger, Composer, Performer

Born: 1894 Died: 1985

Biography

Vernon Griffiths was born in West Kirby, near Liverpool, England in 1894. Following war service in France, he graduated from Cambridge University and taught at Downside School, Somerset. In early 1927 he moved to New Zealand, where he taught at St Edmund's Christchurch Teachers' Training College.

In Christchurch he established Saturday morning classes in music theory and instrumental playing to bring music within the reach of all. His scheme was extraordinarily successful. He also established and edited Music in New Zealand, the first national journal of its kind, for four years. In 1933 he moved to Dunedin where he was appointed Director of Music at the King Edward Technical College. There he quickly established a school-wide part-singing choir as well as an orchestra of 100 or more and a full military band. He composed and arranged a huge amount of repertoire appropriate to the abilities and interests of teenage students. His Dominion Song Books became a staple diet for schools throughout New Zealand.

An account of his work in Dunedin is given in An Experiment in School Music Making (1941, NZ Council of Education Research). The Dunedin Scheme attracted world-wide attention, described by Percy Grainger as "astonishing". Griffiths graduated Mus.D (NZ) from the University of Canterbury in 1937, where he became Professor of Music in 1942. In the twenty years he was there he led many reforms in academic teaching while retaining his interest in the community through industrial and rural music-making - including conducting a Railway Workshops Choir. He also introduced Musicians-in-Residence at the University.

Community music-making was Griffiths' inspiration for composing a wide range of music. His output reflects his skill as a conductor and as an organist (he played one of the early performances of Holst's Hymn of Jesus). He was awarded an OBE in 1957, an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Canterbury University in 1975 and a Composers' Association of New Zealand Citation for services to music in 1980.

Major compositions include Peace and War for choir and brass band, Ode of Thanksgiving, Song of Joy, Three Masses, Dominion Song Books No's 6, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, andNelson's Bass Tune Books No's 1, 2, 3, 4.

Further information about Vernon Griffiths can be found in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography.


Composed (212)

A Boy's Song

for treble voice or soprano and piano, 5m


A Christian Marriage Hymn

for three-part choir


A Christmas Choral Suite

for SATB choir and organ


A Hymn for the Nation

for SSAB choir and piano


A Jingle

for three-part treble choir and piano


A La Claire Fontaine

for three-part treble choir and piano


A man's a man for a' that

for TBB male voice choir and piano


A Marriage Hymn

for voice and piano, 2m


A Marriage Hymn

for SATB choir


A Marriage Hymn

for SSAA choir and piano


A New Zealand Hymn to Our Lady of the Rosary

for SA or unison choir and piano or organ


A Song of Joy

for SATB choir


All my heart this night rejoices

for SATB choir and organ


All things are yours

for SATB choir and organ


An Ancient Lullaby

for men's choir and piano


An Ode of Thanksgiving

for SATB choir and string orchestra, 10m


And the Glory of the Lord

for male choir of up to six parts


And the Glory of the Lord

for piano duet


Annie Laurie

for SSSB choir and piano


Ave Maria

for SA choir and organ


Ave Maria

for SAB choir


Barbara Allen

for three-part men's choir


Begone, Dull Care

for three-part treble choir and piano


Binkie and Me

for voice or unison choir and piano, 2m


Blest are the pure in heart

for SSAB choir and piano


Bobby Shafto

for choir and piano


Calino Custurame

for three-part treble choir and piano


Cantate Domino

for SATB choir and piano


Children of Everyman

for SATB choir and piano


Choral Suite of Five English Folksongs

for SATB choir and piano


Christmas and New Year Greeings - 1975

for unison choir and piano


Christmas and New Year Greetings - 1968

for unison choir and piano


Christmas Greetings - 1970

for unison choir and piano


Come companions, join your voices

for TBB choir and piano


Come Lasses and Lads

for three-part treble choir and piano


Comin' Thro' the Rye

for three-part treble choir and piano


Darby Kelly O!

for men's choir and piano, 2m


Davie Lowston

for SAB choir and piano


Disposer Supreme

for SSAB choir and piano


Drink to Me Only

for three-part treble choir and piano


Edlingham

for SA choir and piano


Epithalamium (Nuptial Song)

for piano duet, 4m


Even Such is Time

for men's choir


Exsultet

for unison choir


Fight the good fight

for SSAB choir and piano


Firmly I Believe and Truly

for mixed choir and piano


Four Country Songs

for men's choir


Fughetta on a french song motive

for flute, violin, cello and harpsichord


Give to our God immortal praise ('Dunedin')

for SATB choir and piano, 3m


Gloria

for SATB choir and organ


Gloria

for two-part treble choir with optional baritone part, may also be sung in unison with organ, or SAB choir with string orchestra, or two balanced groups of soprano and/or male voices with string orchestra


God Defend New Zealand

for three-part men's choir and piano


God of Mercy, God of Grace

for SSAB choir and piano


Golden Slumbers

for three-part treble choir and piano


Grandfather's Clock

for SAB choir and piano, 3m


Greensleeves

for three-part treble choir and piano


Greetings

for mixed choir


Greetings

for four-part choir


Haec dies

for SATB choir


Hail Thee Festival Day

for SATB choir and organ


Hallelujah Chorus

for six-part choir


Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

for choir and piano


Heart of Oak

for SSSB choir and piano


Here's a Health

for three-part men's choir and piano


High Barbary

for choir and piano


His Light Our Way

for unison choir and organ


I have Twelve Oxen

for two-part treble voices and piano


I See His Blood Upon the Rose

for unison choir and piano


Jemima

for three-part men's choir and piano


Jesu Dulcis Memoria

for SSA choir


Jesu Dulcis Memoria

for three-part men's choir


Jesus Shall Reign

for mixed choir


Jesus, Grant me this, I pray

for SATB choir and organ, 3m


John Peel

for SSSB choir and piano


Joy to Thee Queen!

for unison choir and piano


Jubilate Deo

for two-part women's choir and orchestra


King of Glory

for SSAB choir and piano


Laudate Dominum

for SATB choir and piano


Laugh and be Merry

for SATB choir and piano


Let us, with a gladsome mind

for treble or mixed choir and piano


Live We Singing

for three-part treble choir and piano


Loch Lomond

for SSSB choir and piano


Love Came Down at Christmas - 1972

for three-part choir


Love Will Find Out the Way

for three-part treble choir and piano


Magificat and Nunc Dimittis

for two-part choir and organ


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for three-part choir and congregation


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for SATB choir and organ


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for TTBB choir and organ


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for SATB choir and organ


Magnificat and Nunc Dimitus

for two-part choir of boys, women and girls


Mass in D

for unison choir, two-part treble choir or three-part choir treble choir and organ


Mass of the Maternal Heart of Mary

for two-part choir and organ


Melinda's Minuet

for piano


Missa Canonica

for two-part or unison choir


Missa Innocentium

for two-part boys' voices


Missa Simplex in D major

for two-part treble choir with men and organ


Mistress Mine

for low-voiced men's choir


Moonlight dance

for piano


Musical Christmas Card

for two-part choir and piano


Musical Christmas Card - 1967

for four-part choir


My Bonnie

for three-part men's choir and piano


My God, My King

for mixed choir


My soul yearns for you, my God

for SATB choir and optional piano


Now Thank We All Our God

for mixed choir


O Clap Your Hands (Omnes gentes, plaudite)

for STB choir and piano, 3m


O for a thousand tongues

for SSAB choir and piano


O God of Truth

for SSSB choir and piano


O God, our Help

for SSSB choir and piano


O Mary, Mother of our joy

for choir or congregation and piano or organ


O Mistress Mine

for men's choir


O Worship the King

for SSSB choir and piano


Oft in Danger

for SSSB choir and piano


On the Heaphy Track

for voice and piano


Onward, My Comrades

for three-part treble choir and piano


Our Lady of Lourdes

for SSAA choir, 2m


Peace and War

for choir and brass band


Polly-Wolly-Doodle

for three-part men's choir and piano


Praise, my Soul

for SSSB choir and piano


Psalm 144

for congregation or choir and piano or organ


Rejoice Heavenly Powers

for SATB choir


Robin Adair

for three-part treble choir and piano


School Song

for mixed choir


She is Far From the Land

for three-part treble choir and piano


Short Suite

for organ, 8m


Silverstream Mass - Kyrie

for two-part choir and piano


Sing my tongue the Saviour's Glory

for choir or congregation and piano or organ


Soldiers of Christ, arise

for SSAB choir and piano


Some Folks Do

for three-part men's choir and piano


Song of the Western Men

for three-part treble choir and piano


Strawberry Fair

for SSA choir and piano


Summer-Time Suite

for piano


Super, omnia ligna cedrorum

for three-part men's choir


Tavern in the Town

for choir and piano


Tell me where is fancy bred

for voice and piano, 3m


The Angler's Song

for three-part men's choir and piano


The Ash Grove

for three-part treble choir and piano


The Bailiff's Daughter

for SSSB choir and piano


The Bay of Biscay

for SSSB choir and piano


The British Grenadiers

for SSSB choir and piano


The Campbells are Coming

for three-part treble choir and piano


The First Nowell

for mixed choir


The Fox Jumped Over the Parson's Gate

for three-part men's choir and piano


The Harp that Once Through Tara's Hall

for three-part treble choir and piano


The Heavens Are Telling (from The Creation)

for six-part choir and organ


The King of Love my Shepherd is

for SSAB choir and piano


The Lass of Richmond Hill

for three-part treble choir and piano


The Lion and the Tiger

for three-part men's choir and piano


The Lord's Prayer

for unison choir and piano


The Lord's Prayer

for unison choir and piano


The Mermaid

for TBB choir and piano


The Miller of the Dee

for SSSB choir and piano


The Piper of Dundee

for TBB choir and piano


The Reproaches

for mixed choir


The Rolling English Road

for choir and piano


The Spirit of the Lord

for SATB choir


There is a Lady Sweet and Kind

for tenor and piano, 3m


There is a Tavern in the Town

for SSSB choir and piano


Three Kings Out of the Orient Came - 1972

for mixed choir and piano


Thy Kingdom Come, O God

for mixed choir


To the Maypole Haste Away

for three-part treble choir and piano


Trisagion - Nicaea

for organ, 7m


Tu es Petrus

for SAB choir and piano


Turn Back, O Man

for SSSB choir and piano


Two Antiphons - 1979

for unison choir and piano


Vive l'amour

for SSSB choir and piano


Vive L'amour

for two-part men's choir and piano


We be three poor mariners

for TBB choir and piano


Wedding Music

for organ


When all Thy mercies

for SSAB choir and piano


When Christ was Born

for three-part choir


When Johnny comes Marching Home

for three-part men's choir and piano


Where mountains rise to open skies

for SATB choir and piano


While Shepherds watched

for SSAB choir and piano


Who is Sylvia?

for low-voiced men's choir


With every good Christmas and New Year wish - 1965

for unison choir and piano or unaccompanied four-part choir


Worthy is the Lamb

for six-part choir


Wrong not, Sweet Empress

for men's choir and piano, 2m


Ye Banks and Braes

for three-part treble choir and piano


Ye holy Angels bright

for SSAB choir and piano


You Gentlemen of England

for treble choir and piano, 2m



Arranged (1)

The Angler's Song

for three-part men's choir and piano