Open main menu


WYLDE, HENRY (1822–1890), Gresham professor of music, son of Henry Wylde, was born at Bushey, Hertfordshire, on 22 May 1822. At the age of thirteen he became organist of Whitchurch, near Edgware, and three years later a pianoforte pupil of Moscheles. From October 1843 to December 1846 he was a student at the Royal Academy of Music, of which institution he subsequently became a professor of harmony. Wylde was organist of Eaton Chapel and St. Anne's, Aldersgate Street (now demolished). In 1851 he accumulated the degrees of Bachelor and Doctor of Music at the university of Cambridge. In 1852 he was one of the founders of the now defunct New Philharmonic Society, whose concerts he, in co-operation with Hector Berlioz, Lindpainter, and Spohr, conducted for three seasons; in 1858 Wylde assumed the entire responsibility of the undertaking until 1879, when he retired in favour of Mr. Wilhelm Ganz.

Wylde founded in 1861 the London Academy of Music, a private teaching institution which still exists. Its locale was first at St. James's Hall, but in 1867 it was removed to a building in Langham Place erected by Wylde, and named by him St. George's Hall. In 1863, on the death of Edward Taylor [q. v.], Wylde was appointed Gresham professor of music. This post he held till his death, which took place at 76 Mortimer Street, Regent Street, on 13 March 1890. He was buried in Kensal Green cemetery.

Wylde composed a few pianoforte pieces and songs, and wrote a setting of ‘Paradise Lost’ (1850) and a cantata, ‘Prayer and Praise’ (1850). His musico-literary productions include: ‘Harmony and the Science of Music’ (1865 and 1872); ‘Music in its Art Mysteries’ (1867); ‘Modern Counterpoint in Major Keys’ (1873); ‘Occult Principles of Music’ (1881); ‘Music as an Educator’ (1882); and ‘Evolution of the Beautiful in Music’ (1888).

[Grove's Dict. of Music and Musicians, iv. 492, ii. 452; Brown and Stratton's British Musical Biography; Musical Times, April 1890; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

F. G. E.