Born today : Charles Wilfred Orr

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Charles Wilfred Leslie Orr, generally known as C. W. Orr (31 July 1893 – 24 February 1976), was an English composer.  His work as a composer was dominated by the composition of songs accompanied by piano; his life’s study was the expressive setting of poetry to music. He wrote more settings of A.E. Housman‘s poetry than any other composer; he was a particular admirer of Housman. He became acquainted with Housman’ poetry just after World War I, during which time he was unable to fight on medical grounds, having enlisted. He undertook research visits to Shropshire, taking photographs, and attended one of Housman’s lectures as Kennedy Professor of Latin at Cambridge University. He asked for permission to translate A Shropshire Lad into German so he could bring his songs into wider circulation, but the request was refused.

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