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A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–R

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this:

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–R", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 10 April 2020

- R -

RAAKE, Gotthard (Godard; Gothard; Gothan; Francis Gotthard Richard RAAKE)

Teacher of music, professor of languages, convict, forger

Born Warsaw (Warszawa), Poland, 1807
Arrived TAS, 1 September 1839 (convict, per Lady Franklin and Parkfield)
Died Fingal, TAS, 23 September "1883, aged 76 yrs 7 months" (headstone)

RAAKE, Elsie (Regina Elsie Alice)


Born Fingal, TAS, 1871
Died Launceston, TAS, 1947


"GOTTHARD RAAKE, Deception - forgery, 9th July 1838", Proceedings of the Old Bailey

1744. GOTTHARD RAAKE was indicted for feloniously forging, on the 23rd of May, at St. Marylebone, an order for the payment of £60, with street to defraud Lionel Nathan Rothschild, and others.-2nd COUNT, for uttering the same.-3rd and 4th COUNTS, like the 1st and 2nd, only calling it a warrant, instead of an order ... 1745. GOTTHARD RAAKE was again indicted for stealing, on the 18th of January, 20 spoons, value 5l.; 4 forks, value 1l.; 2 ladles, value 2l.; and 1 pair of sugar-tongs, value 5s.; the goods of William Tyrrell, clerk.

"GOTTHARD RAAKE, Theft -simple larceny, 9th July 1838", Proceedings of the Old Bailey

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (9 April 1853), 2

MR. G. RAAKE is prepared to receive a limited number of pupils to instruct them in Pianoforte, Guitar, Flutina, and English Singing. Cards of terms, can be had of Mr. C. F. Wilson, Launceston Academy, York-street. N.B. Pianofortes tuned and repaired.

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (2 June 1853), 6

"LAUNCESTON", Colonial Times (11 September 1855), 3

A man named Godard Raake, formerly a teacher of music in this town, is in custody on charge of uttering a forged cheque for £64 at the shop of Mr. Upton, grocer, in Charles-street. The cheque purported to be drawn by Mr. J. Storey of Avoca. The case is remanded for the attendance of witnesses from the country. Raake was formerly in the service of Mr. S. Lord, of Avoca, and gave evidence at the trial of Dalton and Kelly. He was then a ticket holder. - Examiner.

"MORE FORGERIES BY GOTTHARD RAAKE", The Cornwall Chronicle (22 September 1855), 4

"SUPREME COURT", Launceston Examiner (9 October 1855), 2

"LEGAL", Launceston Examiner (10 July 1875), 3

The Executive Council have released from H.M. Gaol at Launceston Gotthard Raake, a respectable man who at the Recorder's Court in March received sentence of eighteen months imprisonment for stealing a purse and moneys of Joseph Cocker, of Avoca.

"CASE OF GOTTHARD RAAKE. To the Editor", The Cornwall Chronicle (14 July 1875), 3

"EARLY DAYS RECALLED", Examiner (15 February 1926), 3 

"MRS. M. RAAKE. Attains the Century To-day. Pioneer Reminisces", Examiner (12 February 1932), 6

... In 1852 she married Mr. G. Raake, tutor and music master to Mr. Lord's [Simeon Lord, junior] children, and had a family of six daughters, two of whom are deceased.

"DEATHS", Examiner (12 June 1932), 1

"OBITUARY", Examiner (2 November 1940), 7

"DEATHS", Examiner (20 March 1947), 8

Bibliography and resources:

Elena Gover, Russian convicts in Australia (2006)

Tim Causer, "'The worst types of sub-human beings'? The myth and reality of the convicts of the Norfolk Island penal settlement, 1825-1855"

 Raymond J. Warren, "The Warren register of colonial tall ships" (2012)


Clarinet, clarionet player, drum major, band sergeant, master of the band of the 51st Regiment

Born c. 1815
? Arrived Hobart, TAS, with regiment, by late March 1839 or later
Master of the band, in the place of A. P. Duly (resigned), by mid 1845
Married Ann SAWYER (d. 1858), St. Joseph's Church, Hobart Town, 20 February 1845
Died Ballarat, VIC, 21 March 1859, aged 44 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also Band of the 51st Regiment

RABLIN, Henry (Sergeant Henry RABLIN)

Drum-major (former), ? musician

Invalided to England, March 1846


[Advertisement], Colonial Times (9 June 1840), 2

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (21 July 1840), 3

[Launceston news], Colonial Times (11 May 1841), 4

"MR. BUSHELLE'S CONCERT", The Courier (24 February 1843), 2

"HOBART TOWN EXTRACTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 March 1843), 4

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (16 November 1844), 1

1845, Marriages in the district of Hobart; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:832339; RGD37/1/4 no 1766 

[No] 1766 / February 20th, St. Joseph's Church
John Rablin / full age / Sergeant 51st Regiment
Anne Sawyer / full age / [celebrant] Very Rev'd Wm. Hall / [witnesses] John Burke, Jane Sawyer . . .

"THE THEATRE", Colonial Times (29 March 1845), 3

[Advertisement], The Courier (19 June 1845), 1

"THE 51ST REGIMENT", Colonial Times (23 September 1845), 3

"DEPARTURE OF THE 51ST REGIMENT", Launceston Examiner (8 August 1846), 4


Two lives were lost on Monday afternoon by one of those accidents in mines with which our columns are unhappily too familiar. As we have been informed, while two men of the Ophir claim, Inkermann, were at work in a drive the earth gave way and buried them . . . The names of the deceased were John Rablin and Simon Searle Lanyon; they were shareholders in the Ophir Company . . .


Flautist, lecturer, musical instrument designer

Born Liverpool, England, 6 December 1842
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, December 1883
Married Pauline Rita, Melbourne, VIC, 23 January 1884
Departed Sydney, NSW, March/April 1885 (for New Zealand)
Died London, England, 3 March 1917, aged 75

RITA, Pauline (Mrs. John RADCLIFF)

Soprano vocalist, teacher of singing

Born England, c. 1842
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 7 December 1881 (per Orient, from London, 27 October)
Married John Radcliff, Melbourne, VIC, 23 January 1884
Departed Sydney, NSW, March/April 1885 (for New Zealand)
Died London, England, 28 June 1920

John Radcliff, c.1880s

Image: John Radcliff, c.1880s

Image: Pauline Rita, c.1870s 


"COLONIAL ITEMS", The Argus (15 November 1881), 9

FROM THE EUROPEAN MAIL, OCT. 7 ... Madame Pauline Rita sails for Melbourne on October 26, whither she is going to fulfil professional engagements.

"ARRIVED", The Australasian (10 December 1881), 23

"LATE TELEGRAMS", Bendigo Advertiser (24 January 1884), 3

LATE TELEGRAMS ... Melbourne, 23rd January. Mr. John Radcliife, the world-renowned flautist, who is on a visit to Victoria, was married to-day to Madame Pauline Rita, the celebrated prima donna.

"Miscellaneous", Evening News (24 March 1884), 8

"PAN TO PINAFORE", Geelong Advertiser (24 May 1884), 3

"AMUSEMENTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (5 September 1884), 8

"AMUSEMENTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 February 1885), 5

[Advertisement], Oamaru Mail (16 April 1885), 3

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (23 November 1885), 2

"RADCLIFF, THE FLAUTIST", Sunday Times (30 March 1913), 26

Mr. John Radcliff, who has a world-wide reputation as a flautist, and his wife, who before her marriage was Pauline Rita, a successful singer, have for some time past been in failing health and in very necessitous circumstances. Mr. Radcliff is seventy-one years of age, and his wife, who is now almost blind, is seventy. Their investments have proved unfortunate, and they are totally unprovided for. A fund for the benefit of Mr. and Mrs. Radcliff has been opened in London. Mr. Radcliff visited Australia with his wife, in 1884. The flautist and the soprano gave their Sydney concerts at the old Masonic Hall in York-street. At each concert Mr. Radcliff in a little lecture described the development of the flute, and introduced instruments of several periods before playing his own show pieces. During his fairly long stay in this city the genial artist was an honorary member of the Athenaeum Club. Mr. Radcliff helped to make many evenings pass pleasantly while telling stories of the Savage Club in London and its celebrities.

"Obituaries", Observer (12 May 1917), 13

"MUSIC AND MUSICIANS", Evening News (16 October 1920), 7 

Obituary notices in the English musical journals give details of the career of Madame Pauline Rita, who died recently at West Kensington. She was 78 years of age, and blind, at the time of her death. Before she entered upon her on the concert platform with Lablache, Patey, Santley, Celli, and other stars. She married Mr. John Radcliff, the celebrated flautist, and toured Australia and New Zealand.


John Radcliff, School for the flute (London: [s.n.], 1894) 

Bibliography and resources:

"Pauline Rita", Wikipedia

Adrian Duncan, "The genesis of the Radcliff model flute", webpage created 2007 

Radcliff remained with the Italian Opera for years, and did not miss a single performance there during the fifteen years following his initial appointment. When he finally did so, it was as a result of a romance with the celebrated singer Pauline Rita. Radcliff fell passionately in love with her, and the two became engaged. But his lady love was forced to seek a warmer climate for health reasons, and chose Australia as her haven. After an 18-month hiatus, the apparently love-sick Radcliff tired of waiting for her return and, immediately after fulfilling a final engagement at the Leeds Festival of 1883, he left for Australia himself, arriving in Melbourne in December of 1883. He and Pauline were married there in the next month.


Pianist, violinist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1858


[Advertisement], The Argus (9 June 1858), 8 

QUADRILLES and EVENING PARTIES ATTENDED by first-rate violinist and pianist. W. Radcliff, 210 Lonsdale-street east.

RADFORD, Mark (Mark RADFORD; Mr. M. RADFORD; "Mack. RADFORD"; Mark Underhill RADFORD)

Musician, violinist, ? composer

Born Exeter, Devon, England; baptised Holy Trinity, Exeter, 3 August 1825, son of William RADFORD and Elizabeth UNDERHILL
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1853
Died VIC, 1880, "aged 50" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Musician, violinist, ? composer

Born Exeter, Devon, England; baptised Holy Trinity, Exeter, 1 July 1832, son of William RADFORD and Elizabeth UNDERHILL
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1853
Married Sarah YOUNG (c. 1837-1913), VIC, 1856
Died Bendigo, VIC, 11 November 1870, "aged 42" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)'s+band+VIC+1855-71 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

RADFORD, William Henry (William RADFORD; Mr. W. RADFORD)

Musician, violinist, viola player, ? composer

Born Exeter, Devon, England; baptised 30 August 1829, son of son of William RADFORD and Elizabeth UNDERHILL
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1853
Married Milbrew Jannetta LLOYD (c. 1835-1889), VIC, 1857
Died Spring Creek, via Beechworth, VIC, 28 March 1861, "aged 32" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


The brothers Mark, William, and Sydney Radford, who arrived in Melbourne in 1853, were sons of William Radford, musician, of Exeter, and his wife Elizabeth Underhill.

The eldest of William senior's sons, Walter Underhill Radford, was born in 1823 (baptised Holy Trinity, Exeter, 25 March 1823), and was working in Manchester as a musician at the time of his marriage there on 8 February 1841.

The three younger sons first appeared billed together in Melbourne for one of John Winterbottom's concerts in July 1853, as:

M. Radford, S. Radford, W. Radford, from the Manchester and Liverpool Philharmonic.

Sidney had settled in Bendigo by 1855, where he became well known as the leader of "Radford's celebrated band" (Radford's Quadrille Band). He died there in 1870.

William settled in Beechworth by around the same time, and died there in 1861. He and his wife had two daughters, Emily Jannetta (1857-1861), and Alice Milbrew (Mrs. John Poole, 1860-1898). His widow resettled in New Zealand, where in Dunedin in 1864 she married William Hugh Taggart.

Mark also gravitated toward the goldfields, and is documented in Beechworth, Ballarat, Castlemaine, and Hamilton. He died in 1880.


England (to 1853):

England census, 1841; Warwickshire, St. Martin; UK National Archives, HO 107/1142/9 

Thomas Allwood / 20 / Professor of Music
John [Allwood] / 15 / [Professor of Music]
Mark Radford / 15 / [Professor of Music]

England census, 30 March 1851, Devon, Exeter; UK National Archives, HO 107/1868 

69 Magdalene St. / William Radford / Head / 48 / Musician / [born] Exeter
Elizabeth [Radford] / Wife / 48 / Tedham St Mary
Emily / Dau. / 7 / Exeter Devon . . .

England census, 30 March 1851, Lancashire, Bury; UK National Archives, HO 107/2214 

59 Market Street / George Hamilton / Head / 50 / Publican . . .
Sidney Radford / [Lodger] / 20 / Musician / [born] Exeter . . .

England census, 30 March 1851, Yorkshire, Sheffield; UK National Archives, HO 107/2338 

30 Eldon Street / Mary Burke / Head / Licensed Victualler . . .
Mard Radford / Visitor / 25 / Professor of Music / [born] Devon Exeter

Victoria, Australia (from 1853):

? [Advertisement], The Argus (1 June 1853), 6 

BARQUE CIRCASSIA, From London. MR. RADFORD, carpenter, of the above vessel, is requested to return to his duty immediately, as the ship will sail in a few days, MATTHEW CREAK, Master.

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 July 1853), 8 

WEEKLY MUSICAL PROMENADES, a la Jullien, at Rowe's Circus. M. Winterbottom, in announcing his third Promenadee Concert, a la Jullien, To take place on Saturday, the 5th of August, 1854 . . . Herr Strebinger, (whose performances on the violin have met with such unbounded success at these concerts) . . . has likewise been engaged as Leader of M. Winterbottom's Monstre Band, among which may be mentioned . . . M. Radford, S. Radford, W. Radford, from the Manchester and Liverpool Philharmonic. Herr Handoff, Herr Kohler, Signor Reichart, &c., &c., &c. . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 August 1853), 8

NEW Music, composed by Radford, expressly for Braids' Rooms. "The Argus Polka," "Braid's Assembly Polka," "Herald of Hope Valses," "Express Galope," every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday evening.

[Advertisement], The Argus (9 October 1853), 8 

MELBOURNE CASINO. All the new Music at the Grand Ball to-night. Mr. S. Radford, leader.

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 December 1853), 8 

ROWE'S AMERICAN CIRCUS . . The Fifth of a series of GRAND PROMENADE CONCERTS will be given at the above place of amusement on
SATURDAY EVENING, December 10th, 1853. Mr. Alfred Oakey's celebrated Monster Orchestra . . .
Pianoforte, Mr. Alfred Oakey.
Violino primo - Mr. Radford and Mr. Peck . . .
Leader, Mr. M. Radford.
Conductor and composer, Mr. Alfred Oakey . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (13 October 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 October 1854), 8

TO-NIGHT! Melbourne Casino to-night.
The great night of the season.
For the Benefit of the Band.
On this occasion the following eminent Artists, among many other professional friends, have kindly volunteered their services:
First violins - W. and S. Radford.
Second violins - Chate, Edwards, and Griffiths.
Tenor - J. Baker.
Double basses - W. Tranter and Herr Plock.
Cornet-a-Pistons - P. C. Burke and W. Carey.
French Horn - Herr Khoeler.
Clarionett - G. Wilson.
Harp - T. King.
Principle Clavicore - C. Roe.
Trombone - J. Hawkes.
Oboe - H. Sorge.
Drums - Fred. Sharpe.
Piano - ?. Owen.
To commence with a Grand Concert in which Messrs. William and Sydney Radford will play a duet on one violin, first time in Australia; and the celebrated duet from Les Huguenots, for the cornet and violin, by P. Burke, and W. Radford.
To conclude with a Fancy Dress Ball. Admission, 5s.

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 November 1854), 8 

VICTORIAN EXHIBITION. Melbourne, 1854. On Friday, November 3rd, The Philharmonic Society will perform Handel's Oratorio of The Messiah . . . Instrumentalists: Violin - Messrs. Griffiths, King, Fleury, Strebinger, W. Radford, M. Radford, Ryder, Pietzker, Fischer, Newton, Lewis, and Hurst . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (8 January 1855), 8

MELBOURNE CASINO.-The Criterion Band under the direction of Mr. Radford, at the Casino to-night.

"PATRIOTIC FUND", Bendigo Advertiser (1 September 1855), 3 

. . . Mr. Pitman stated that Mr. S. Radford had promised that his excellent band would be at their service . . .

"BENDIGO. PATRIOTIC BALL", The Argus (1 October 1855), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 February 1856), 8

[Advertement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser [Beechworth, VIC] (12 March 1857), 4 


[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (5 March 1858), 3

BENEFIT and Iast appearance but one of MR. W. WHITE, (Formerly of Rainer's Serenades.)
The following Gentlemen have kindly volunteered their valuable services :-
Mr. S. Radford - Violin (primo.)
Mr. James McEwan - Violin (secundo.)
Mr. R. McEwin - Cornet.
Mr. Andrew Kerr - Flauto.
Mr. John McEwan - Basso.
Mr. Hunter - Piano.
Mr. M. W. White - Banjo.
VOCALISTS: Mr. J. Small, the celebrated characteristic and local Singer . . .

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (17 March 1858), 3

St. Joseph's Catholic Church, BEECHWORTH.
GRAND HIGH MASS, With Orchestral Accompaniments.
Mr. G. Griffiths, First Violin
" Weichman Second Violin
" J. P. Hurley, Flute
" W. Radford, Viola
" Mr. Barlow, Cornet
" Jenkins Sax Tuba
" Wright Violincello
Herr Esther Double Bass.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (23 June 1858), 3

DUO CONCERTANTE - Violin and Piano - sur des themes, Lucia di Lammermoor - Radford and Saqui . . .

"THE STAR THEATRE", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (9 February 1859), 4

John Black still holds his place on the boards of the Star, and nightly he develops those vocal resources of which he is possessed, and which have captivated numerous and critical audiences. John seems to improve as he grows older. He gets more of life and power into him, and the voice, naturally strong, has more of volume infused into it. In some of the Irish songs, he is great! but, not being a native of that country, he lacks the smack of the brogue which gives a raciness to the style. He is supported by Percy, a sentimental singer of slight pretensions; but he is very ably upheld by Radford, on the violin, and Saqui, on the piano. Indeed, the overtures played by Radford and Saqui are nightly, and very deservedly, encored. We say, deservedly, because the instrumentalism of Radford is the best we have heard for years.

"THE LATE MR. W. RADFORD", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (30 March 1861), 2 

It took many of the residents of this district by surprise on Thursday to be informed that this skilful musician had ceased to be. Mr. Radford had been a resident of this district for the last six years, and was held in high esteem by all who had the pleasure of knowing him. He was a great favourite in the musical circle in the Metropolis previous to his coming to Beechworth, and liberal inducements were held out to him by many in the hope of retaining him in the City. As a musician he possessed talents that cannot be found in every day walk, and his services were always sought after on occasions of great gatherings for amusement. His name was well known throughout the whole district, and deservedly appreciated. The news of his demise will draw forth from all classes the sad expression of regret, and his memory will be respected in all time to come. Mr. Radford had been unwell for some time from an attack of colonial fever, but nothing serious was entertained that his illness was to fold him in the cold arms of death. The remains of the deceased gentleman were conveyed from his late residence, Spring Creek, to the Beechworth cemetery at three o'clock on yesterday afternoon, followed by a large concourse of our townsmen. The profession of which Mr. Radford was a member were also present and the band played that, solemn dirge - the Dead March. Mr. Radford leaves a bereaved widow and three children to deplore his untimely death.

[Advertisement], Mount Alexander Mail (12 April 1861), 1 

MR. MARK RADFORD, Violinist, send your address to your brother, Sydney, immediately, Family matters of importance.

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 September 1869), 1 

MR. MARK RADFORD, violinist, please send your address to ship Hotel, Sandridge.

[Advertisement], Hamilton Spectator and Grange District Advertiser (8 December 1869), 3 

DUNDAS CONCERT-HALL, HAMILTON . . . Mr. MARK RADFORD, Musical Director; M. J. POWER, Stage Manager; Mr. J. THORN, Proprietor.

"IN MEMORIAM - SYDNEY RADFORD. To the Editor", Bendigo Advertiser (16 November 1870), 3

Although now living at a distance from Bendigo I am a constant reader of the ADVERTISER, and saw in this Saturday's issue the simple announcement of the death, at the hospital, of consumption, of Sydney Radford, a musician. Now I thought some old Bendigonian would have informed one of your staff that poor kind-hearted "Syd" was amongst you in former days. What old Bendigonian of fifteen or sixteen years ago does not remember listening to the strains of Sydney Radford's band? It was an institution in Bendigo at that period. Thousands of diggers could say that they "many a time and oft heard the band discourse most eloquent music." Sydney Radford came up with his band to Bendigo in the latter part of the year 1854, and played at the principal places of amusement in Sandhurst, then entered into an engagement at the Manchester Arms, Long Gully, for twelve months, obtained very great popularity there amongst the diggers, and afterwards played with considerable success at Eaglehawk. Sydney Radford was a good musician and a first-rate violinist. He was a kind-hearted creature, and an excellent friend to brother professionals. He left Bendigo and resided in the northern districts of the colony for some years. Alas! what changes come "o'er the spirit of our dreams." Poor "Syd" comes back again after an absence of years to the scene of his former triumphs, friendless and alone, dying of consumption, to end his days in the Bendigo District Hospital. What a strange coincidence that two such excellent violinists as Monaghan and "Syd" Radford should die at Sandhurst on the same day one at the height of fame, surrounded by troops of friends, the other unhonoured and unknown.
FELIX. Melbourne, 12th November.

"DEATHS", Illustrated Australian News for Home Readers (5 December 1870), 215   

RADFORD. - In the Bendigo Hospital, on Friday, 11th November, of consumption, Mr. Sidney Radford, musician, of Radford's band, aged forty-two, deeply regretted.

"TOWN POLICE COURT . . . A DANCING DEN IN THE EAST", The Ballarat Courier (13 August 1875), 3 

John Pasco Sims was charged with being the occupier of a house frequented by persons having no lawful visible means of support . . . Senior-constable Irwin stated that he visited the house in Main street after twelve on Sunday morning last, when he found seven prostitutes and about two dozen larrikins there. He could not say whether defendant was the occupier of the house or engaged as a musician . . . Mark Radford said he was in occupation of the house; he had been put into it by Sims' son. Sims had a share of the proceeds for the use of his musical instruments . . .

RAHM, Veit

Zither player, "Tyrolese Minstrel", composer

Born Laimach (bei Hippach), Zillertal, 14 June 1825
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 28 April 1853 (passenger per ship, via Africa)
Departed ? Melbourne, VIC, ? January 1857
Died Hippach, 9 October 1904, aged 79 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


In Australia Rahm's programs included several of his own works, including "aria The evening bells with variations (hand fantasia; zither)" [see also Veit Rahm, Music of the Tyrol (1. Evening bells; 2. A Tyrolese air), arr. for pianoforte by J.O. Smith (London: [1852]), copy at British Library, Music Collections h.970.(13.) [004597311], The Tyrolese postilion (national song; in imitation of the trumpet; zither), and The crying peasant (comic song).


"MUSICAL", The Argus (4 May 1853), 9

"HERR VEIT RAHM", The Courier (19 October 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Courier (13 November 1854), 3

"HERR VEIT RAHM'S CONCERT", The Courier (18 November 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 February 1855), 1

"KILMORE", The Argus (18 January 1856), 5

"HERR VEIT RAHM'S FAREWELL CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 May 1856), 8

The chief attraction was the vocalization and instrumental performance of Mr. Rahm on the zither, a stringed instrument of his own invention. The songs sung by the Tyrolese minstrel were selected from his own compositions. They were meritorious productions, but they defy the efforts of every one not possessing a voice of very great compass. In the Tyrolese Minstrel, Mr. Rahm gives an excellent imitation of the sound of the trumpet, only surpassed by his performance of the Nightingale, with imitations. The grand aria on the zither, the Mountain Bells, and the Last Rose of Summer, with variations, were exquisite performances, requiring delicate and yet brilliant manipulation. The comic song, the Crying Peasant, produced the usual exhilirating effects. Mr. Rahm proved himself deserving of the encores and applause he received.

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 January 1857), 8

Bibliography and resources:

Toni Rieser and Helmut Eberharter (eds), Die Abenteuer des Veit Rahm: Unterhaltung, Abenteuer u. Reisebeschreibung des wirklichen weltbereisten Tiroler Sängers und Zitherkünstlers Veit Rahm aus dem Zillertal vom Jahre 1851 bis 1857 Umfasst die Reise von Australien nach Vandiemensland der englischen Strafkolonie ([Austria]: Hemut Eberharter, 2008) (DIGITISED)

A facsimile and edition of Rahm's manuscript memoir


Teacher of dancing
Active Sydney, NSW, 1830


Mrs. Raine ran both a boarding school for young ladies and a "Dancing Academy" in Sydney in 1830.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (10 July 1830), 1

RAINER, John Cragin (J. C. Rainer)

Vocalist, musical director (Rainer's Minstrels; Rainers's Serenaders), theatre manager

Born New York, USA, 1820
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 19 September 1852 (per Speed, from San Francisco, 28 July)
Died Coburg, VIC, 27 November 1889, aged 69 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"RAINER'S SERENADERS", Daily Alta California (25 July 1852)

This evening this excellent and popular band of Minstrels make their last appearance in California prior to the departure for the Australian colonies. Mr. J. C. Rainer, the leader of tins famed troupe of serenaders, takes a benefit, and for which an unusually interesting programme is announced.

"ARRIVALS", The Maitland Mercury (25 September 1852), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 October 1852), 1

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Courier (14 April 1853), 2

[Advertisement], The Courier (14 April 1853), 3

"CLEARANCES", The Sydney Morning Herald (6 September 1855), 4

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (6 September 1856), 4

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (19 December 1859), 1

"MELBOURNE", Bendigo Advertiser (11 June 1867), 2

I see that Mr. J. C. Rainer, the original proprietor of Rainer's Christy Minstrels, has, after a life of comparative inaction as a licensed victualler at Daylesford, again taken the field, or rather the boards, this time as conductor of the Campbell troupe. Any one who knew Mr Rainer's vocal ability in former years, and hears how little time has impaired his really fine voice, will be glad to learn that he has again resumed his profession.

[Advertisement], Daily Southern Cross (3 March 1870), 1

"RAINER'S DIORAMA", Bendigo Advertiser (12 March 1881), 2s

"THE AMERICAN WAR", South Australian Register (12 June 1882), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (28 November 1889), 1

"LETTER FROM A VICTORIAN", Advocate (9 October 1909), 13 

Related prints:

H. Marsh & Co.'s Ethiopian Melodies, As Sung by the New York & Rainer's Serenaders (Sydney: H. Marsh & Co., [1851-53]) [12 titles listed; first editions of the first numbers perhaps date from as realy as mid 1851 with the first Sydney appearances of the New York Serenaders]

[1] O would I were a boy again (Sydney: H. Marsh and Co., [first edition 1851]) 

[7] Ben Bolt (as sung by M. W. White of Rainer's Minstrels, arranged by J. C. Rainer) (Sydney: H. Marsh and Co., [first edition 1852]) 

[8] Old folks at home (as sung by by T. Brower of Rainer's Minstrels, as arranged by J. C. Rainer) (Sydney: For the author by H. Marsh, [first edition 1853]) 

[9] Nelly was a lady (Sydney: H. Marsh & Co., [first edition ? 1852]) 

Old folks at home (arranged by J. C. Rainer) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [186?]); Marsh's edition re-issued 

Bibliography and resources:

Benjamin Miller, The fantasy of whiteness: blackness and Aboriginality in American and Australian culture (Ph.D thesis, University of New South Wales, 2009), 128-29


Basso vocalist, composer, songwriter

Born c.1831
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by February 1863
Died Glebe, NSW, 9 November 1906, aged 75 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Argus (10 February 1863), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 September 1867), 8

"Music at the Great National Fair", The Sydney Mail (5 September 1891), 9


The last and now the sole survivor of the first Christy minstrel troupe that visited Australia - the company that used often to be styled, erroneously, of course, the "Original Christy Minstrel company, though it was only original as far as Australia was concerned - is Mr. T. H. Rainford, the well-known basso singer and teacher of singing and music, for many yearn permanently settled in Sydney. The company was organised in London in 1862, and consisted of the following: - T. H. Rainford, basso and middle man; Charles Stewart, first tenor and guitarist; Tony Wish [Nish], first violinist, baritone, and composer; Joe Brown, corner man and silver belt; Jigger Steele, 'cellist, pianist, and alto; Wash Norton, corner man and female Impersonator; James Melvyn, second tenor and second violin. The organisers were Rainford and Melvyn, both of whom were connected with the original Christy Minstrel Company in London, and were at the time playing at Her Majesty's Bijou Theatre, in the Haymarket. They were no less than two years getting the company together, the difficulty being to get "double-handed" men, that is, men who were artists in two or more lines. Their original tonor was Vernon Rigby, but though he agreed to join the company, his father objected, and his engagement was cancelled, and his passage money forfeited. But it will be better to let Mr. Rainford tell his own story, as he did the other day at his room in the Strand-arcade, Sydney, to one who had long known him, and who had seen and heard him in his prime.


"We got shipwrecked on our way to Australia, on the West Coast of Africa, after leaving Port Elizabeth. We were coming to Table Bay in the Waldensian, Captain Goss. There were 131 passengers on board, but no lives were lost; 31 of the passengers were clergymen, who were coming to some Church Conference. I was landed with only a shirt and pair of trousers, and we slept three nights on the beach, men, women, and children huddled together, with sand and soil for plllows. Our company lost all their properties and luggage. Melvyn, who was our treasurer, had £1850 in his possession, which we had received for an engagement of seven nights at Port Elizabeth and two nights at Grahamstown. The money was to be equally divided among us when we arrived in Capetown. Melvyn landed safely with the money. It was 11 o'clock at night when the ship struck, but we managed all to get ashore. The money was duly divided at Capetown. We subscribed £200 among us for Joe Brown, who had lost his trunk and his silver belt, and was at the time a heavier loser than any of us, and it was a strange thing that the only trunk of the company's that was afterwards recovered was Joe Brown's. It contained 200 sovs. besides the belt, and had never been opened; but he never returned the £200 to us. Joe thought he was worth more than any other member of the company, and he was not a good one to get along with, so we did what we thought was best, and gave him two shares.

"We left Africa in the old Coonamburra, then a new boat, bound for Australia, and a nice time we had in her; she lost her rudder for the second time, and we were nine weeks getting to Melbourne."


"Our first appearance in Australia was at the Theatre Royal, Melbourne, in February, 1863. We played for a month to crowded houses. The season was a tremendous success. Barry Sullivan was then lessee of the theatre, and W. S. Lyster sub-lessee. We followed his opera company, which included Lucy Escott, Squires, Wharton, Farquharson, Mme. Durand, Armes Beaumont, Kitts, Baker, and King. We all went and heard the last night of that splendid company. The opera was "The Huguenotts." We were almost disheartened at the prospect before us in having to follow on after such magnificent performances. It was Saturday night, and we had to appear on tho Monday. But our show was an immense success. Lyster afterwards told Sam Lazaar that he made more money out of us seven minstrels than out of all the opera companies he was ever connected with in his life. He took half the gross receipts, and we the other half. We had to cut ours up into eight shares. You see, Joe Brown, as I said, valued himself at twice any of us, for his silver belt jigging and corner man work, and refused to play at all unless he got two shares of the profits, and we had to agree to it. Well, with eight shares, and the sub-lessee taking half the receipts, my first week's share was £96 5s. That will tell you the sort of business we did. Lyster said he cleared £2000 out of the season - one month of negro minstrelsy. But our minstrelsy was quite a new thing.

"Well, we came on to Sydney next, and opened at the School of Arts in March. We played three months to crowded houses. Joe Brown left us in Sydney, and went back to London, and organised a second company, with John Smith, since deceased, which was the second company that visited Australia.

"By the bye, I saw it stated recently in a Sydney paper that a singer named Coward was one of the first Christy minstrel company that came out here, and the writer mentioned that I could throw some light on his fate. This is not all quite correct. Coward was one of the company that Joe Brown brought out - the second minstrel company - and he poisoned himself. Coward had a beautiful baritone voice. I knew him well, for it was I who induced him to join the original Christies in London. His real name was Henry Castor. He had taken the name of Murray, and why he ever took the name of Coward I naver knew. He was a pupil of the celebrated baritone, Jack Farmer, of Nottingham, of which place he was a native.

"Jow Brown's place was filled by taking Harry Leslie on. We left Sydney after our engagement was up, and started for Hobart, en route to New Zealand, under engagement to Shadrick Jones, who gave us £1600 for a month's playing. We opened in Dunedin, and played to crowded houses. Clarence Holt, father of Bland Holt, was lessee of the theatre during our season at Dunedin. From Dunedin we went to Christchurch "on our own," and then to Wellington, but the Maori war was then raging, and stalwart young men were in such demand that we thought it good enough to get back to Australia. We went to Melbourne, and opened at St. George's-hall, "on our own," and did very well.


"Ours was not, of course, the first black face entertainment in Australia. John Rainer's Serenaders and some other small companies had burnt cork before us, but ours was the first Christy minstrel company, and all our people were artists, and in its way it was far beyond anything ever seen before in this part of the world. In addition to tho ordinary black face business, we burlesqued operas. The first opera we burlesqued was "The Bohemian Girl." The burlesque was written by Brough, father of Mr. Robert Brough, of the celebrated B. and B. Company, and the author of the burlesque was present at the first performance, which took place originally (?) in London in 1862. We also burlesqued "Maritana," "Sonambula," "Lucretia Borgia," and "Lucia di Lammermoor." These, or most of them, were first produced in the old Prince of Wales Theatre in Castlereagh-street, Sydney, Mr. Dind being the lessee. The black opera season lasted two months, and we afterwards visited Newcastle, Maitland, Singleton, Bathurst, Parramatta, and other places."


"I can tell you a peculiar incident that happened in connection with our trip to Bathurst. We were billed to appear on a particular night. The train then only ran as far as Parramatta. Our company left Sydney on Sunday, at 8 a.m. I missed the train by a second or two; it moved off as I got on to tho platform, and I could have jumped in at the window, only the guard stopped me. I at once ordered my old mare to he saddled, and I rode for bare life to catch the coach at Penrith. The journey killed tho poor beast, and I got to Penrith in time to learn that the coach had just left. I got another horse, and rode as hard as the roads would allow to Hartley, only to find the coach just left again. There I was with the second horse knocked up. I got a "third" nag, and galloped on to Bathurst, arriving there at 20 minutes past 7 o'clock. on the night of our first performance, and one of the first things that caught my eye was tbe handbills announcing "that in consequence of Mr. Rainford missing the train" the opening performance was postponed until the following night. But the performance went on, and there was a crowded house. We gave the burlesque of "The Bohemian Girl," and I played the Count, and a sorer Count you never "saw" in your life, I can tell you. I was as glad when tbe performance was over as the boys were to see me.

"During our stay in Bathurst I was present at the trial of young Dunn, the bushranger, who was found guilty, and afterwards hanged. After we came back to Sydney we took Lee Braham on instead of Stewart, who left us; and Linley Norman took the place of Steel, pianist. Wash Norton was the next to go, and in his place we took Tommy Peel, so the original company gradually broke up. Melvyn and I, the originators, stuck together, and formed a burlesque, glee, and madrigal company. Melvyn afterwards settled in Hobart, and I took to English opera as prlmo basso under engagement to Mr. W. S. Lyster, for whom I played for several years; afterwards joining Alice May's English opera company."

Mr. Rainford has appeared in very many operatic characters besides those he has mentioned, one of his latest being Dick Deadeye in "Pinafore." His voice retains much of its power and quality. He has in his rooms, in the Strand Arcade, Sydney, a large number of portraits of the characters he has sung in, besides a fine group showing the first Christy Minstrel company that he and Melvyn brought to Australia. He frequently sings now at concerts for religious and charitable purposes, and is full of anecdotes and reminiscences.

"SERIOUS ILLNESS OF MR. RAINFORD", Singleton Argus (7 July 1903), 3

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 November 1906), 12

"THE LATE TOM RAINFORD", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 November 1906), 3

THE LATE TOM RAINFORD. For six years Mr. Rainford was principal basso with Lyster's famous opera companies, appearing in 15 different operas. His repertoire ranged from Mephisto, Count Arnheim, Don Jose ("Maritana"), and parts in "La Sonnambula", "Daughter of the Regiment", "Der Freischutz", "Martha" and "Satanella", to the lightest opera bouffes by Offenbach and others, one of his famous characters being General Boom in "The Grand Duchess". Besides singing in the "Elijah" with the Melbourne Philharmonic Society in 1870, Mr. Rainford toured for six months with Mme. Arabella Goddard in 1874, with Mme. Christian in 1875, and Mme. Ilma de Murska in 1876 - a record which shows that his talents were freely recognised in what may be termed classic circles. The late Tom Rainford lived to such a ripe old age (75 years) that the various accounts of his career dealt chiefly with the latter part of it, prominence being given to the connection of the basso with the original Christy Minstrels in London, and with various comic opera companies in Australia. Miss Eva Rainford, who attended her father to the last, reminds us that he was an accomplished musician and "theorist", who could score for full band from a pianoforte setting. In his earlier years the basso appeared five times before Queen Victoria, and, arriving in Australia in 1863 he sang at the concert to the Duke of Edinburgh in 1868, and at Calcutta before the present King during his visit to India as Prince of Wales in 1870.

Musical works:

Beneath the Southern Cross (patriotic song; words by E. Mullarkey; music by Thos. H. Rainford ("Sung by Mr. Warwick Gainor with great success") (Sydney: Troedel, [1888])

Christmas bells by Thos. H. Rainford, in Violet's musical album (Sydney: H. J. Samuell, 1894) 

As sung by Rainford:

Oh! boyhood's days ("words by Frank Younge; music by George Loder; As sung by T. H. Rainford" (Melbourne: W.H. Glen & Co., [188-?]) 

Ring the bell watchman ("composed by H.C. Work; Sung by T. Rainford of Weston & Hussey's Minstrels") (Melbourne: W. H. Glen, [? 1870s]) = tune later adapted to Click go the shears 

Sons of new Britannia ("Australian patriotic song; words by W. T. Goodge; music by Nicholas J. Gehde (Sydney: Nicholson & Co., [1899]) 



Active Melbourne, VIC, 1858



During the evening, Mr. Ramage, who until lately has very kindly given his gratuitous services as Precentor, was presented with a handsome mahogany writing-desk and a bible.

RANDALL, Charles

Amateur vocalist

Born England, c. 1808
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1828 (convict per Florentia)
Active Maitland, NSW, by 1840
Died NSW, 1875

RANDALL, Charles (junior)

Amateur vocalist, choir leader

RANDALL, Jane Ann (Mrs. John FURNESS)

Amateur vocalist

RANDALL, Frederick

Flute and piccolo player (teacher of John Amadio)

Born NSW, 1860


Proceedings of the Old Bailey, 31 May 1827 

1059. CHARLES RANDALL was indicted for stealing, on the 19th of May, at St. Botolph without, Aldgate, 1 violin case, value 3s.; 3 violins and bows, value 4l. 10s.; 2 flutes, value 10s.; 2 music-books, value 3s.; 2 combs, value 25s., and 1 wig, value 20s., the goods of Solomon Josephs , in his dwelling-house ... GUILTY - DEATH . Aged 19. Recommended to mercy by the Prosecutor.

MM on 8 July 1843; between the years 1861 and 1866 Randall participated in the meetings of the West Maitland School of Arts, and in both 1867 and 1874 he sang at soirees held in order to raise funds for the school.

"First-class Concert", Nepean Times (30 March 1895), 3 

Professor Randall, of Her Majesty's Theatre was to have played a flute solo, but owing to a family bereavement, could not be present. His place, however, was taken by Misses Furness (2), relatives, who gave a Spanish waltz with great precision and effect, and in response to an encore, the younger one danced the Highland fling perfectly, to the great delight of the audience. She was loudly applauded.

"NEWTOWN CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH", The Sydney Morning Herald (5 November 1897), 5 

"MUSICIANS AT HOME", Evening News (13 June 1899), 7 

A duet for flutes (Messrs. Randall and Amadio) ...

"SOCIAL ITEMS", Evening News (19 January 1900), 8

... fantasia, "Pastorale Hongroise," for flute, by Doppler, was beautifully played by Mr. F. Randall. Messrs. Allpress and Gehde shared the duties of accompanists ...

"PROFESSIONAL MUSICIANS' SMOKE", Evening News (10 September 1900), 8 

Bibliography and resources:

Taylor 2015, Recovering lives, especially 129-33 

RANDALL, John ("Black Randall")

Musician, bandsman (Band of the New South Wales Corps)

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 26 January 1788 (convict per Alexander, from Portsmouth 13 May 1787)

See also Band of the New South Wales Corps

Summary (after Statham and Fairall):

Randall was an African-American, from New Haven, Connecticut, born about 1764. He was convicted in Manchester, England, on 14 April 1785 for stealing a steel watch chain and sentenced to seven years transportation. He was sent to the Hulk Ceres early in 1786 and transferred to the convict transport Alexander on 6 January 1787. His name was recorded as Reynolds when mustered aboard, though he was arrested and tried as Randall. He enlisted in the NSW Corps at Sydney on 17 November 1800 and was discharged on 24 April 1810. He was accordingly serving in the Corps at the time of the convict insurrection at Vinegar Hill (5 March 1804) and the Rum Rebellion, 26 January 1808. Records suggest that he was stationed at the Sydney Barracks, and paysheets for the Corps (Mitchell Library) record that he received an allowance for playing in the Corps Band for at least a year (1806).

Bibliography and resources:

Pamela Statham (ed.), A colonial regiment: new sources relating to the New South Wales Corps 1789-1810 ([Canberra]: P. Statham, 1992)

Ray Fairall, The Afro-Australians: the Randall/Martin families and the First Fleet, Sydney 1788, a work in progress (revised 25 October 2008)

B. and M. Chapman, "Private John Randall (Reynolds) (c.1764-1817)", Australia's red coat regiments 

"John Randall", Australian royalty 

RANDALL, William

Amateur musician, violinist, organist, organ-builder

Born Devon, England, 9 December 1821
Arrived SA, December 1846 (per Duke of Richmond)
Died Adelaide, SA, 4 January 1898


[Advertisement], South Australian Gazette and Colonial Register (21 August 1847), 1 

IN AID OF THE FUND FOR RELIEVING THE DESTITUTE OF GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND, - A Concert of Sacred Music will be given, by the Adelaide Choral Society, for the above purpose, at the Large Room of the Freemasons; Tavern (kindly granted by Mr. Robinson for the occasion), on Tuesday evening, the 24th instant. Leader - Mr. Bennett; Organ (kindly lent by W. Randall, Esq,) - Mrs. Murray ...

[Advertisement], South Australian Gazette and Colonial Register (2 October 1847), 2 

FOR SALE - A sweet toned Organ, with five stops well adapted for a drawing room, chapel, or small church. Apply to WILLIAM RANDALL, Rundle street; or, "Woodside Cottage," near Kensington.

"A GOOD OLD COLONIST. THE LATE MR. W. RANDALL", South Australian Register (4 January 1898), 5 

... He is one of the few remaining specimens of the fine old English gentleman who are fast dying out. We are all sorry that he is going from us, but his kind face, gentle words, and unostentatious charity will live long in the memories of all classes of the community. Mr. Randall was an earnest member of the Church of England, and used to ride regularly twelve miles on Sundays to hold service at Yankalilla, and home again. He had musical tastes and in his youth played both violin and organ with ability. Almost the first if not the first pipe organ imported into the colony was one which he dismantled in the old English home and brought out with him ...

See also:

Papers relating to the family of William Randall; State Library of South Australia 

RANGER, Sampson

Clarinet / clarionet player

Active Goulburn, NSW, 1839
Died Collector, NSW, 19 November 1887 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Notice], New South Wales Government Gazette (23 January 1888), 633 

. . . In the will of Sampson Ranger, late of Collector, in the Colony of New South Wales, farmer, deceased . . . who died on the 19th day of November, 1887 . . .

"C. OF ENGLAND DIOCESAN MUSEUM. HISTORICAL COLLECTION", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (4 September 1936), 4 

The nucleus of a valuable and interesting museum is now housed in the vestibule of the Church House, Goulburn . . . A clarinet, the first musical instrument used in church services in Goulburn a hundred years ago, is the gift of Mr. S. Ranger . . .

"MR. ALBERT RANGER", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (1 August 1938), 7 

Ransome T. Wyatt, History of the Diocese of Goulburn (Goulburn: Diocese of Goulburn, 1937), 122, 132

Ransome T. Wyatt, The history of Goulburn, N.S.W (Goulburn: Municipality of Goulburn, 1941), 122, 426 

. . . The first musical instrument ever used at a church service in Goulburn was a clarinet and is still in existence. It was brought to Australia by S. Ranger who in 1839 used it to accompany an anthem of his own composition. Afterwards it was used in the Anglican Church at Collector and later still in the Methodist Church. Then it was given to the diocesan museum by A. Ranger, of Goulburn, grandson of S. Ranger.

RANGONI, Antonio (Signor RANGONI)

Musician, cornet player, trombone player

Active Melbourne, VIC, by June 1854
Active Beechworth, VIC, 1855-57 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Argus (10 June 1854), 8 

ROWE'S CIRCUS. Concert Extraordinary.
A Band of Italian Musicians, whose talent was unsurpassed in their native country, having recently arrived in this colony, will have the honor of making their first appearance in Melbourne, and giving a grand Concert at Rowe's Circus, on Saturday evening, June 10th, 1854.
Having made arrangements with with Caverly Volunteer Fire Company to appear with it on all public occasions, the Band has received permission to take its name and wear its uniform.
The Band will therefore be known as the Caverly Volunteer Band.
It consists of A. Rangoni, Manager, Cornet-a-pistons; Angelo Lagomarsino, Basso; Francesco Volpi, Clarinetto; Giacinto Gagliardi, Flauto; Giovanni Abba, Trombone; Allessandro Belloni, Basso; and Giovanni Grenno, Casa. Herr Ellerner will preside at the piano . . .

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (26 May 1855), 6

"POLICE COURT", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (20 February 1857), 2 

SLY GROG CASE. Antonio Rangoni was brought up on warrant charged with selling spiritous liquors without a licence at the Yackandandah.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (16 March 1857), 3

RAPER, Jane (Miss RAPER; Miss Jane RAPER)

Contralto vocalist, teacher of piano and singing (pupil of Eliza Wallace Bushelle)

Born Sydney, NSW, 1843 (daughter of Edward and Jane RAPER)
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1867
Died Sydney, NSW, 25 March 1916 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 August 1865), 1 

NEW SOUTH WALES LEICHHARDT SEARCH FUND. - A CONCERT ... German Song - The Exile, Keller, Miss Raper (pupil of Madame E. Wallace Bushelle) ...

"COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT TO MRS. MEILLON", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 May 1871), 5 

... Miss Raper made her first appearance in public since her return from England, and sang with great taste a cavatina from "La Donna Carlton," for which she was encored, and gave one of her favourite Irish ballads. She also sang in the second part a solo from "The Prophet," and received much applause ...

"Music and the Drama", Australian Town and Country Journal (21 September 1878), 26 

We perceive from American papers that Miss Raper, formerly well known in Sydney as a successful teacher of the pianoforte and singing, has been giving concerts in Western America. A farewell concert was given by her in Denvers City, Colorado, in May last, which was largely attended, and the programme of which comprised some choice pieces. Miss Raper's singing was spoken of by the Denver press in terms of strong eulogy. We understand that Miss Raper is now in London, en route to Sydney, so her numerous friends in this city may anticipate having the pleasure of hearing her soon.

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 April 1916), 8 

The veteran contralto and teacher, Mrs. Klngsmill-Shaw, writes, in regard to the recent death of Miss Jane Raper, stating that well-known singer especially desired before she passed away that her career should be referred to in the "Sydney Morning Herald." It seems that Miss Raper was trained by Mrs. Bushelle (possibly the Mrs. Wallace Bushelle, who was a sister of Vincent Wallace, the composer, sang the role of Maritana in London, and returning to Sydney taught here for many years until her death). Miss Raper was a cultivated contralto singer, who appeared in public here a great deal some 35 or 40 years ago, and then became highly esteemed as a teacher. For many years she resided in Rosebank-street, Darlinghurst, and was a great friend of Mrs. Boesen, a prominent patron of musical affairs both at that epoch and later.

Bibliography and resources:

"Edward Raper", Sydney's Aldermen 

RAUFER, Mary Ann Sarah

Soprano vocalist, blind pupil

Born London, England, 1853
Died VIC, 1941


"CONCERT IN AID OF THE BLIND ASYLUM", The Argus (19 September 1872), 6


Miss Raufer, a blind pupil, who possesses a very fine and cultivated voice, rendered "The Captive Greek Girl," and being encored gave "Smiles and Tears."

"CONCERT BY THE BLIND", Riverine Herald (2 November 1876), 3

"BLIND ASSYLUM CONCERT", The Argus (4 July 1879), 7

[News], The Argus (31 March 1882), 5

Bibliography and resources:

Judith Raphael Buckrich, Lighthouse on the boulevard: a history of the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind 1866-2004 (Melbourne: Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2004)

RAVAC, Leopold also known as

RAWACK, Leopold


Go to main page:

Leopold and Amalia Rawack

RAY, Edgar (Edgar Lyon RAY)

Tenor vocalist, magazine editor, printer

Born Bristol, England, 124 April 1828
Active Melbourne, VIC, by December 1852
Married Charlotte PITMAN, St. Paul's, Melbourne, VIC, 15 November 1853
Died Kew, England, 23 August 1905 (TROVE tagged)


In Melbourne in December 1852, Ray advertised that "THE CITY OF LONDON GLEE AND MADRIGAL UNION" was available for engagements, also noting that his colleagues Mr. W. C. Lyon (his half brother) and Mrs. E. Hancock, "professors of the Royal Academy of Music, London" would give lessons in singing, pianoforte and harmony. That month, too, the three appeared in the UNION's inaugural concert with other recent arrivals including Harriet Fiddes. By 1855 Ray was a publisher and printer (of, among others, Melbourne Punch), though from 1856 he again took to the stage, as, for instance, in June 1856, for a charity benefit at the Olympic Theatre in which the cast also included Punch contributor R. H. Horne.


[Advertisement], The Argus (4 December 1852), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (13 December 1852), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (17 January 1853), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 June 1856), 8

Bibliography and resources:

Marjorie J. Tipping, "Sinnett, Frederick (1830-1866)", Australian dictionary of biography 6 (1976) 

RAY, Joseph

Actor, comic vocalist, songwriter (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Alias of Joseph SIMMONS


Basso vocalist, banjo player, Professor and Teacher of Vocal Music, composer, songwriter

Arrived Sydney, NSW, February 1865
Departed Sydney, NSW, by 1870 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


The Smith, Brown, and Collins "original" Christy's minstrel troupe, in which Rayner was "an eminent basso and first class musician" arrived in Sydney "after a most successful tour through India, China, Java, Batavia, &c." in February 1865. With a mixed program including black-face minstrel numbers and operatic burlesque, they toured to Melbourne in March, Bendigo in April, Adelaide in May, Tasmania in July, and gave their farewell season for the reopening of the Victoria Theatre in Sydney in December.

From his first Australian appearance, Rayner was especially known for his performances of the American Civil War song, Dear mother I've come home to die (music by Henry Tucker). In January 1866, J. H. Anderson and Son first issued their own edition, Dear mother I've come home to die, "the popular song sung by C. W. Rayner" (see also Anderson's later "edition" digitised Dear mother I've come home to die).

Rayner having stayed on in Sydney after the rest of his troupe returned to Europe, he advertised as a "Professor of Singing" ("pupil of Signor Randegger and Henry Drayton") care of Alfred Anderson. Anderson assisted by writing "accompaniments" of the first song Rayner published in Sydney, probably necessarily, because later it was reported that Rayner "for some time has been studying the theory of music with Gassner". Giovanni Gassner, bandmaster of the 50th Regiment, made and played band arrangements of several of Rayner's pieces, as well as his own March on Rayner's Southern Cross (1867). Rayner was last billed to appear in concert in June 1869, and a year later was reported to be in Virginia City, USA.


"THE ORIGINAL CHRISTYS' MINSTRELS", Bell's Life in Sydney (4 February 1865), 2

[Advertisement], Empire (13 February 1865), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (18 February 1865), 1

"THE ORIGINAL CHRISTY'S", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 February 1865), 7

"RE-OPENING OF THE VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 December 1865), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 January 1866), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 January 1866), 12

[Advertisement], Empire (8 February 1866), 1

"MR. C. W. RAYNER", Freeman's Journal (17 February 1866), 98 

MR. C. W. RAYNER. - We notice that this gentleman has established himself in Sydney a professor of music, and we can with confidence recommend his services to any of our readers who may be disposed to place themselves under his supervision. Mr. Rayner was the principal basso in the late Christy's Minstrel Troupe, and the tone and quality of his voice were the subject of just and universal commendation. If any further recommendation of Mr. Rayner's qualifications were necessary, the very fact of his having been under the tuition of Signor Randegger and Henri Drayton, should satisfy the most exacting. We heartily wish Mr. Rayner every success in his new sphere.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 February 1866), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 June 1866), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 June 1867), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 August 1867), 4

"SATURDAY HALF-HOLIDAY ASSOCIATION", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 September 1867), 5 

... The musical society, in connection with the association, is in a rapidly improving state; upwards of forty members have now been enrolled. They usually meet for practice at the Temperance Hall, in Pitt-street, on Friday evening, when the class has the benefit of the able instructions of Mr. C. W. Rayner.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 October 1867), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (6 November 1867), 1

"New Song", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 May 1868), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (18 July 1868), 7

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 August 1868), 4

"Colonial Extracts", Queanbeyan Age (15 August 1868), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 February 1869), 1

"AUSTRALIAN PATRIOTIC ASSOCIATION SOIREE", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 June 1869), 4

[Advertisement], Daily Alta California (9 January 1870), 6 

MOZART MINSTREL HALL, POST STREET, NEAR KEARNY ... SAN FRANCISCO MINSTRELS ... Ben Cotton, Billy Ashcroft. M.B. Leavitt, Mast. Bennie, W. F. Baker, C. W. Rayner. Theo. Jackson, R. W. Kohler, And the Great Vocal and Instrumental Galaxy ...

"ELLA ZOYARA", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 July 1870), 5

... a mammoth circus company has been organised by Messrs. Lake, Leihy, Wilson, and Co. ... the company which is now working its way over the mountains to Virginia City, at which latter place Mr. C. W. Rayner, late of John Smith's Australian Minstrels, is taking a spell teaching the young idea how to sing.


C. W. Rayner's elementary system, and course of study for singing classes, with examples in the art of phrasing, also exercises for the development of the voice (Sydney: F. White, Machine and General Printer, [1866]) 

Speak gently (song; words: D[avid] Bates; accompaniments by Alfred Anderson) ([Sydney]: Rayner, [1867]) 

One word (song; words: Miss Parkes, music C.W. Rayner) (Sydney: To be had from the author [Rayner], [1868]) 

The Australian belles (caballetta) ([Sydney: Rayner, 1867])

I will brighter be tomorrow (romanza) ([Sydney: Rayner, 1867])

Australia's welcome to prince Alfred ("Ode to Prince Alfred") (words: J. H. Rucker)(Sydney: Published by the composer, [1867]) 

The Southern Cross (Sydney: Published by the Composer, [1868]) 

The Southern Cross (5th edn.) 

There's no such word as fail (words: F. S. Wilson) (Sydney: Published by the Composer, [1868]) 

The Australian stockman's song (a bush lyric; words: F. S. Wilson) (Sydney: Published by the composer, [1868]) 

RAYROUX, Adolphe Francois

Professor of Music and Languages (University of Paris), pianist, composer

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1864
Died Melbourne, VIC, 4 August 1895


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 July 1864), 3

[Advertisement], Gippsland Times (12 January 1867), 4

"AMATEUR CONCERT", Gippsland Times (5 December 1868), 3

An amateur vocal and instrumental concert was given in the Sale Mechanics' Institute on Thursday evening by the local amateurs, in aid of the fund for the purchase of the piano now used in the hall ...Mons. Ad. Rayroux presided at the piano, and the band was comprised as follows:-1st violin, Mr J. H. W. Pettit; 2nd violin, Mr S. Lang; 1st flute, Mr W. T. Sprod; 2nd flute, Mr S. Slater; violincello, Mr T. Thew ...The concert was opened with an overture from "Massaniello", very creditably performed by the band ... A quadrille "Le jour de naissance", composed by Mr. W. Legge was rendered by the hand in an inspiriting manner ... The Waltz "L'Etoile du Berger", composed by Mr. Rayroux was also performed by the orchestra and elicited applause.

"M. RAYROUX. TO THE EDITOR", Gippsland Times (20 April 1869), 3

"CONCERT", Kerang Times (14 September 1877), 2

"INSOLVENT COURT", The Argus (21 March 1881), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (5 August 1895), 1

REA, Alex (Alex REA; Alexander REA)

Professor of Music, organist, pianist, composer

Born c.1830
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1862
Died Enmore, Sydney, NSW, 13 March 1909, aged 79 (NLA persistent identifier)


"CONGREGATIONAL MISSIONARY SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 July 1862), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 July 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 June 1864), 1

"THE CHROMATIC RONDO", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 November 1864), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 December 1864), 12

"CATHEDRAL ORGAN OPENING", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 July 1867), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 February 1874), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (11 February 1874), 1

  "NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 February 1874), 7

"MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 October 1874), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 October 1874), 1

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 June 1879), 5

"MESSRS. WEEKES AND CO.", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 March 1882), 5

"THE CENTENNIAL ORGAN. TO THE EDITOR", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 September 1889), 13

"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 July 1902), 6

"FUNERALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 March 1909), 12

"Mr. Alexander Rea ...", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 March 1909), 6

"SYDNEY COLLEGE OF MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 April 1909), 12

Musical works:

Chromatic rondo (a study for the pianoforte) (Sydney: Reading & Wellbank, [1864]; London: Weekes & Co., [?]) (Sydney ed.) (London ed.)

Grand octave waltz (for the pianoforte) (Sydney: Reading & Wellbank, [1864]) 

Gathering rosebuds (a song written and composed by Alexander Rea) (Sydney: Elvy & Co., [1874]) 

Caprice ("for the pianoforte, composed and dedicated to Miss E. M. Woolley") (Sydney: Elvy and Co., [1874]) 

The promenade rondo (for the pianoforte) (Sydney: Elvy & Co., [1879]) 

Sonatina for the pianoforte no. 1 in C ([Sydney] London: Weekes & Co., [1882]) 

The chatterbox rondo (for the pianoforte) ([Sydney] London: Weekes & Co., [1887]) 

Reverie (song, the words by Albert G. Dawes) ([Sydney] London: Weekes & Co., [1888]) 

Good night, good night (song, the words by Albert G. Dawes) ([Sydney] London: Weekes & Co., [1888]) 

Beneath a broad elm tree (song, the words by Albert G. Dawes) ([Sydney] London: Weekes & Co., [1888]) 

Consolation (melody for the pianoforte) (Sydney: W. H. Paling & Co., [1902]) 

READ, William Henry Beaumont (Mr. Beaumont READ)

Alto vocalist (student of John Hullah), sopranist, songwriter

Born Dorset, England, 22 August 1833
Arrived Sydney, NSW, December 1874 (from London)
Died Unley Park, Adelaide, SA, 5 January 1910, "aged 77" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 December 1874), 10

[Advertisement], The Argus  (9 January 1875), 12

"MADAME ANNA BISHOP'S CONCERT", The Argus (13 January 1875), 6

... Amongst these names the most interesting on the score of novelty will be that of Mr. Beaumont Read who sings with a voice which is rarely heard amongst men in these days. Of mature age he appears to have still preserved the fresh and high voice of a boys voice which has grown into power without that break which marks the period of adolescence. His selections were The Maid of Athens by Allen and this being encored he sang Little Sweetheart come and kiss me (a song noticed lately as being published in Melbourne). In the second part he sang another ballad of the plaintive kind suited to his exceptional voice entitled Please give me a penny, the composition of Siebert and as sung by Mr. Read as touching an appeal as any mendicant might hope to trade upon. This was very well sung indeed and it was encored with great warmth by the audience, who, by their applause, were evidently interested by the novelty of the singer's voice.

"MR. BEAUMONT READ", The Register (4 April 1903), 3


... When did I come to Australia? Let me see. It must have been 1874. I have a vivid remembrance of my Australian debut in Sydney. I was engaged to appear at the Exhibition Building on Christmas night, and I gave "He was despised". It happened that Madame Anna Bishop was also singing, and she was so pleased with my voice that she waited at the wings of the platform for me and arranged that I should make a tour of Australia with her company. At the conclusion of this trip I spent two years in New York, and came back to Australia, where I have remained ever since. I came to reside at Adelaide 11 years ago on the death of my wife, and immediately formed a male quartet consisting of Messrs. Holder, Nash, Middleton, and myself. We were a successful combination, and I think won considerable popularity while we were together.

"A NOTABLE SINGER", The Register (6 January 1910), 7

"A PROMINENT SINGER. MR. BEAUMONT READ DEAD", The Advertiser (7 January 1910), 8

Associated songs:

Don't go, Molly darling (ballad; "music by Edward Kearns; words by F. Mears"; "especially composed for Mr. Beaumont Read of Madame Bishop's company") (Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., 1875) 

Please give me a penny (by Wm. Seibert, as sung by Beaumont Read) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1875]) 

Sweet by and by (words by Fillmore Bennett; music by J. P. Webster; as sung by Beaumont Read of the Kelly and Leon Troupe) (Melbourne: Nicholson & Ascherberg, [1877]) 

Sweet chiming bells *words by Beaumont Read; music by C. F. Shattuck) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1879]) 

For the old land's sake (written and sung by Beaumont Read; music by N. La Feuillade) (Sydney: W. H. Paling & Co., [1885]) 

READ, Eliza (Mrs. Charles READ)

Professor of Music and Dancing, Drawing from Nature (formerly of the Royal Leamington Spa), composer

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1853
Died Sydney, NSW, 13 June 1905 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

READ, Alfred

Professor of Dancing, dancing master (son of the above), pianist, violinist

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1863
Died Sydney, NSW, 28 May 1907, aged 61


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 October 1853), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 January 1854), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (29 December 1855), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 February 1856), 1

"COURT OF REQUESTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 July 1856), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 November 1859), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 February 1865), 6

"THE MUSICAL FESTIVAL", The Argus (9 April 1867), 5

"PADDINGTON", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 August 1868), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 December 1868), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 January 1869), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (13 November 1874), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 December 1874), 4

[Advertisement], Australian Town and Country Journal (30 January 1875), 11

"THE AUSTRALIAN BALL-ROOM GUIDE", The Maitland Mercury (29 January 1876), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 July 1888), 2

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 December 1902), 11

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 June 1905), 6

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 June 1905), 10

"WOMAN'S COLUMN", The Newsletter: an Australian Paper for Australian People (24 June 1905), 13

Mrs. Read, mother of Mr. Read, the dancing master, passed away last week, at an advanced age. To live for 44 years in one street is in itself a feat, especially in a new country, whilst the road is yet a-making. Mrs. Read was a highly accomplished woman, and had a museum in miniature of curiosities which she showed to the many hundreds of friends and pupils which she possessed. Her long useful life was spent in teaching as well as bringing up a family of sons and daughters. For 22 years she was in the staff of professors at Subiaco Convent.

"PERSONAL", Freeman's Journal (1 July 1905), 18

"L.W.: Fifty Years a Dancing Teacher in Sydney", Australian Town and Country Journal (12 July 1905), 29

"L.W.: Fifty Years a Dancing Teacher in Sydney" was recorded of a lately passed-away lady, who had lived for 45 years in William-street, where her academy was, and where she had taught many hundreds of pupils the graceful art of dancing, deportment, and the etiquette of ballroom. But times have changed since the dear old lady so recently dead, first taught the waltz, as it was danced half a century ago. In 1814 the dances were the centre dance, jigs, and reels, the quadrille being then brought from Paris to England, when, it was a stately measure, only to be walked through. The measures trod after that notable ball before Waterloo written about by Lord Byron, "On with the dance-let joy be unconfined," may have included the then only coming in waltz, which was considered very improper by our ancestors. Fifty years ago the quadrilles we waltzed to very slow time, and the waltz was dignified, compared to now. It was considered "difficult to accomplish, and an art only suitable for ladies and gentlemen." When the polka first became fashionable, it was a little short jog, to "Pop goes the Weasle." Miss Piper, the daughter of Captain Piper, of the Point named after him, first introduced it in Bathurst, where she taught the young officers stationed there. Mrs. Read taught it to nearly everyone in Sydney in her day. But what shock to the artistic sensibilities of anyone who knows the ballroom of 50 years ago would it be to visit the Sydney Town Hall when a charity dance is in progress, or watch the young folk do a "barn dance," a "cakewalk," or the "Society Lancers." The "pas seuls" and "pirouettes" that distinguished the graceful dancer of other days have gone out with the court courtesy, or "curtsey," and now the "cheeky little bob" is all that remains of that graceful movement.

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 May 1907), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 May 1913), 2  

Musical compositions:

The Irresistible galop ("for the pianoforte composed by Mrs. C. Read") (Sydney: Elvy & Co., [1865]) 

The Sydney quadrilles ("arranged by Mrs. Charles Read") (Sydney: J. Reading & Co., [1868]) ("composed and arranged by Mrs. Charles Read, on the most popular airs of Sydney, dedicated, by permission, to Mrs. James Martin") (2nd ed. January 1869) 

Other works:

Mrs. Chas. Reed's Australian ballroom guide (? 1st edn. 1875); later edns.


Music-seller, music publisher, stationer, printer

Born Warwick, Warwickshire, England, 20 September 1811; baptised Brook Street Chapel, 27 October 1811, son of James and Sarah READING
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1843
Married Tabitha THRELKELD (d. 1904), Independent Chapel, Sydney, NSW, 18 May 1843
Active as "Reading and Wellbank", 1853-68 (taking over J. R. Clarke's premises, plates, and stock-in-trade, July 1864)
Active as "J. Reading and Co. Music Publishers and Sellers", 1868-78/79
Died Sydney, NSW, 15/17 June 1878, aged 67 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Reading's sister, Sarah, married John Fairfax in 1827; their son was James Reading Fairfax.


Registers of births, Warwickshire, independent; UK National Archives 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 March 1843), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 October 1853), 3

NOTICE. THE undersigned have this day entered into partnership, in the businsss of General Printers, &c.
October 22, 1853.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 October 1854), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 July 1864), 2 

MUSIC, BOOK, and PRINT DEPOSITORY . . . 356, George-street (late Clarke's), Sydney. READING and WELLBANK beg respectfully to announce to their friends and the public of New South Wales, that they have purchased from the trustees of the estate of Mr. J. R. Clarke, the whole of the Stock, comprising Music, Oil Paintings, Engravings, Framed and Unframed Lithographic and other Prints, Photographs, Stereoscopes and Slides, Photographic Albums . . .
The large and choice selection of printed music, vocal and instrumental, for which the establishment is already celebrated, will be supplemented by monthly importations - per Overland Mail - of every new and popular publication from London.
Catalogues of the principal Songs, Pieces, &c., are in course of preparation, and, when ready, may be had on application gratis . . .

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 July 1868), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (31 August 1868), 1 

NOTICE. - Mr. JAMES READING, the surviving partner in the firm of "Reading and Wellbank," of No. 366, George-street, and No. 13, Bridge-street, Book and Music Sellers, Stationers and Printers, having purchased from the Executrix of the late Mr. Isaac Wellbank all her interest in the business, begs to announce that in future it will be carried on under the name, style, and firm of JAMES READING and CO. Sydney, 28th August, 1868.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 October 1868), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 February 1879), 10

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 June 1878), 1

READING. - June 17, at his late residence, Premier-terrace, William-street, James Reading, late of Warwick, England, aged 63 years.

Musical editions: (ALL TAGGED) (ALL TAGGED)

(Selected highlights):

Under the holly (cantata; words: R.P. Whitworth; music: James Churchill Fisher) [wordbook only] (Sydney: Reading & Wellbank, 1865) 

Royal sailor waltzes (by the composer Edward Lord, Jnr) (Sydney: Reading and Wellbank, [1868]) 

The Molly Asthore waltzes (by Douglas Callen) (Sydney: Reading and Wellbank, [186-?]) 

I've waited and watched (ballad; from cantata Under the holly, above) (Sydney: J. Reading, [1868]) 

Bibliography and resources:

Neidorf 1999, 225-26 


Isaac Wellbank


Vocalist, banjoist (Ethiopian Serenaders; New York Serenaders)

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1850 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 April 1850), 1

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (6 April 1850), 2

"ETHIOPIAN SERENADERS", Bell's Life in Sydney (6 April 1850), 3

[Advertisement], The Courier (31 August 1850), 1

"THE SERENADERS", Bell's Life in Sydney (9 November 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Moreton Bay Courier (23 November 1850), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 December 1850), 3

[Advertisement], Empire (4 April 1851), 1

"DEPARTURES", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 October 1851), 2

"THE NEW YORK SERENADERS", The Courier (15 November 1851), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 December 1853), 5

? "BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 October 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 August 1856), 1

OUR LYCEUM THEATRE, under the management of Messrs. Craven and Stephens. UNCLE TOM'S CABIN TO-NIGHT. Miss A. M. QUINN, Mr. J. H. VINSON, and the whole of the powerful company with numerous auxiliaries. On MONDAY, August 25th, the performances will commence with (first time) an entirely new dramatic story (founded on Mrs. H. B. Stowe's popular work), and written expressly for Miss A. M. Quinn, with new plot, scenes, situations, and characters by Frank Fowler, Esq., Member of the Literary Institute of the British Empire, &c, of EVA, or LEAVES FROM UNCLE TOM'S CABIN. The overture and entire music composed and arianged by M. Winterbottom; the new and appropriate scenery painted by Mr. Guy; the panorama of New Orleans by Mr. Thomas; the nigger dances and serenades by the Ethopian Minstrels engaged expressly to give effect to the delineation of slave life! . . .
Squibby, Mr. Reading; Sambo, Mr. German; Bingy, Mr. Brenny . . .
In the course of the piece - Chorus - "I'll throw myself nway," Messrs. Brenny, Reading, German, &c. . . .
Chorus - "Mississippi am a berry fine boat," with banjo and tamborine accompaniment, Messrs. Brenny, Reading, and Felix German . . .


Songs of the serenaders, sung nightly by them, with great applause, before his excellency Sir Charles Augustus Fitz Roy, the hon. Mrs. Keith Stewart, and the elite of the aristocracy of New South Wales, part 1 (Sydney: Printed at Trood's Printing Office, n.d. [1850])

Words only; 12 pages; copy at State Library of New South Wales

REED, Thomas (Mr. REED; Mr. T. REED; Thomas REED; T. W. REED; ? W. REED, "Daddy" REED)

Violinist, cellist, double bass player, string player, orchestra leader, music class leader, composer, music retailer

Born Somerset, England, c. 1795
Married (1) Frances GERMAN (c.1796-1839), Bristol, England, 17 July 1816
Married (2) Amelia Ann SMITH (1822-1866), London, England, 16 May 1846
Active Melbourne, VIC, by November 1849
Died Fitzroy/Collingwood, VIC, 19 June 1871, aged 76 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

REED, Emma (Emma Martha REED; Mrs. Daniel HARRISON)


Born Bath, England, 27 August 1832; baptised St. Nicholas, Cole Abbey, London, 11 March 1849 [sic]
Married Daniel HARRISON, St. James, Melbourne, VIC, 27 April 1850
Died VIC, 7 March 1915, "aged 84 years" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Thomas Reed, "formerly of Islington, and of the Haymarket Theatre, London" was father of the composer Thomas German Reed (1817-1888).

Upon relinquishing his post as musical director at the Haymarket in mid 1849, it was reported:

Mr. Reed received a handsome ring from the members of the orchestra of the Haymarket Theatre; he is about to quit England for Port Philip.

He was already in his 50s when he arrived in Melbourne. He established a music warehouse in Bourke Street by 1850, from which in November he published The song of Victoria ("Written and Composed with Original Music, by Thomas Reed"), now lost, celebrating Separation.

At a concert in May 1850 he presented his son's Plantagenet polka, as well as his own Fantasia on Italian operatic airs and a Pasticcio, introducing the Yarra Yarra schottische and Port Phillip aerial galop (written for and performed at the recent Royal Birthnight Ball).

Reed was almost certainly a founding member of the Melbourne Philharmonic Society, and was a member of its orchestra, playing cello when required, and also arranging music.


"AMATEUR CHORAL SOCIETY", The Musical World (22 October 1840), 266

"ISLINGTON AMATEUR SOCIETY", The Musical World (10 December 1840), 375

"SOCIETY OF BRITISH MUSICIANS", The Era [London] (16 January 1848), 11

The last concert of the series was given on Monday evening, and contained an unusual proportion of native compositions. The concert commeuced with a manuscript quintet, in C minor, for pianotorte and stringed instruments, by Mr. Westrop; played by the composer, and Messrs. Thirlwall, Day, R. Blagrove, and Reed ... A song by Mr. Rea, "I arise from dreams of thee," was sang by Miss E. Turner [= Elizabeth Testar]

"INTELLIGENCE, MISCELLANEA, ETC.", The Dramatic and Musical Review (August 1849), 221

"CONCERT", The Argus (27 November 1849), 2

[Advertisement], The Argus (6 December 1849), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 January 1850), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (28 February 1850), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 March 1850), 2

[Advertisement], The Argus (8 March 1850), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (30 May 1850), 3

[Advertisement], T. REED'S MUSICAL REPOSITORY ... Just Published", The Argus (20 November 1850), 3

"HAM'S ILLUSTRATED AUSTRALIAN MAGAZINE", The Courier (11 February 1851), 3

"THE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Age (15 November 1858), 4 

... The second division of the programme includes one of Corelli's sonatas arranged for a full string and wind band by T. Reed ...

"DEATHS", The Argus (20 June 1871), 4

"NEWS AND NOTES", The Ballarat Star (22 June 1871), 2 

Mr. Thomas Reed, who expired on Monday, at his residence in King William street, Fitzroy, at the advanced age of 70, was one of the oldest and most respected members of the musical profession in the colony. The deceased gentleman was formerly "first violin," at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket, in London, and he has also occupied a leading position in colonial orchestras.

"Deaths", The Argus (7 May 1888), 1

Alfred Montague, "SEVENTY YEARS OF MUSIC. A VETERAN'S MEMORIES. EARLY PLAYERS AND SINGERS. No. 1", The Argus (19 September 1925), 8

... I first saw Melbourne in December, 1852 ... I had brought with me a letter of introduction from Costa to Mr. Reed (better known to me afterwards as "Daddy" Reed), who was the autocrat of the musical world in Melbourne. He was well known in London as a teacher of music and 'cello players in the Opera, but better still as the father of T. German Reed, one of the most popular men in London. I waited on him at his house in Fitzroy one hot morning in January, about 11 o'clock, and was shown into the music room. After waiting some time I noticed some music on the piano, and found it to be the duets of Mozart and Beethoven for four hands. Written on the music pencilling were these blunt criticisms of young Melbourne on the great masters - "a halfpenny for Mozart," "a farthing for old Beethoven;" "Stuff! Rubbish! Nonsense!" When Mr Reed appeared he read my letter, asked no questions, and said, "There is a rehearsal tomorrow night for Winterbottom's concert. Be down there before eight." Thus my acquaintance with the music of Melbourne commenced ...

Bibliography and resources:

"Reed, Thomas German", Dictionary of national biography 47 (1896), 394-96,_Thomas_German_(DNB00)

REES, Alice

= Madame VOGRICH


Contralto vocalist, oratorio singer (pupil of Castelli)

Active Melbourne, VIC, December 1863 to December 1867


Soprano vocalist


Bass vocalist


Fanny Reeves, briefly a pupil of Charles Castelli, made her major Melbourne debut singing in the Christmas Messiah in 1864. In a review of a concert in August 1865, she was described as:

... a pupil of Castelli, and a debutante of some promise. She is a mezzo-soprano, very pleasing, particularly in the lower notes, and gave evidence, in the singing of the Maid of Judah, and the Parting, by Mendelssohn, of cultivation and good taste.

She also sang for the Orpheus Union. Her last major Melbourne appearance was again in the Christmas Messiah in 1867, when the Argus reported:

Miss Fanny Reeves, the contralto of the evening, was ... unsteady at first, but soon rallied, and her "He was despised" was a delicious rendering of that delightful air.


There were several Miss Fannie Reeves musically active in Britain during the second half of the century. Blanche Whiffen (1845-1936) recalled that at the Royalty theatre in London, in 1865, she was asked to step in to Prince Amabel when "Miss Fanny Reeves, who sang the contralto role in the opera, was taken ill". That opera singer, active at Drury Lane in the late 1850s, was later Mrs. Elliott Galer (died 1897). Another singer of that name, a niece of Sims Reeves, was born in 1852. A "Miss Fannie Reeves, of the London Concerts" was advertised to make "her first appearance in Australia in Brisbane in August 1872.


"THE NEWS OF THE DAY", The Age (23 December 1863), 5 

A Christmas concert of sacred and secular music was given last evening in the Wesleyan Grammar Schools, Church street, Richmond, by the principal of the schools, Mr G. F. South, assisted by the members of the Juvenile Philharmonic Society. The attendance was very large, and for the most part consisted of ladies. The evening's entertainment commenced with some pieces of sacred music, after which the cantata of "Christ Stilling the Tempest," composed by Mr. South, was produced with great effect and ability, the soloists being - soprano, Miss E. Reeves; contralto, Miss F. Reeves; tenor, Mr. Wilson; and bass, Mr. C. Reeves. The composition of the piece reflects great credit on the musical talents of the composer ...

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 May 1864), 8

A CONCERT In AID of the BAKER-STREET WESLEYAN CHURCH BUILDING FUND Will be given by the Richmond Juvenile Philharmonic Society and the Richmond Music Class, Assisted by Miss MORTLEY, Miss FANNY REEVES, Mr. H. Wilson, Mr. C. Wilson. Mr. Spenseley, Mr. N. Fletcher, and others, In the ARTILLERY ORDERLY-ROOM, Bridge-road, Richmond. THIS EVENING. Conductor, Mr. G. F. South. Admission, 1s.; reserved seats, 2s.

[News], The Argus (19 December 1864), 5

"THE MESSIAH, ON CHRISTMAS EVE", The Argus (26 December 1864), 5

[News], The Argus (27 February 1865), 4


"THE ORPHEUS UNION CONCERT", The Argus (15 October 1867), 7

"THE MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (25 December 1867), 5

Disambiguation references:

"DRURY LANE", The Musical World (29 March 1856), 204

[Advertisement], The Musical World (2 January 1864), 1

[News], Evening News (18 November 1869), 2 

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (5 August 1872), 1

"WHAT WOMEN ARE DOING", The Brisbane Courier (2 December 1897), 7

[Blanche Whiffen] Mrs. Thomas Whiffen, Keeping off the shelf (New York: Dutton, 1928), 37




Go to main page: 

REID, Serjeant

Band-serjeant, Band of the 48th Regiment

Regiment's NSW tour of duty, 1817-24

See also Band of the 48th Regiment


"DISBURSEMENTS. ECCLESIASTICAL ESTABLISHMENT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (3 October 1825), 1

Paid Serjeant Reid, and others of the band of the 48th Regt. for performing sacred music, from 1st April 1823, to 1st April 1824....42 00

REID, James Aquinas (also Aquinas RIED)

Musician, composer

REID, Catherine


REID, Mary


Go to main page: 


Conductor, composer

Active Bendigo, VIC, by 1871
Died New York, USA, 6 February 1904


Music retailer

Born Bendigo (cousin of the above)
Died Dunedin, NZ, 20 August 1916


"A COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT", Bendigo Advertiser (31 August 1871), 2

"THE EXHIBITION", Bendigo Advertiser (5 February 1887), 3

[Advertisement], Launceston Examiner (5 December 1891), 3

"MELBOURNE NOTES. BY ONLOOKER", Otago Witness (16 October 1901), 57

"WILLIAMSON AND MUSGROVE'S 'SIGN OF THE CROSS' CO.", Bendigo Advertiser (2 December 1898), 3

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Brisbane Courier (31 March 1902), 6

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 February 1904), 10

"OBITUARY", Bendegonian (21 November 1916), 20

Associations: Pupil of William Gollmick

REIFF, Anthony (junior; A. REIFF, jun.

Conductor (Lyster's company), composer, arranger

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1 March 1861 (per Achilles, from San Francisco)
Departed Sydney, NSW, September 1863
Died New York, USA, 1916 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Anthony Reiff junior (not to be confused with his father, who died in 1880) came to Australia as musical director for Lyster's opera company in 1861.

Several of his own compositions are documented, beginning with songs composed for his Lyster co-artists, Village bells (words: L. L. Lewis) (for Lucy Escott) [September 1862], and To look upon her face once more (ballad; composed expressly for his friend Henry Squires) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1862]).

Perhaps his most interesting Australian composition, historically, was the Funeral ode in memory of the deceased explorers of Australia, Burke and Wills ("Back from the Lonely Grave") (words: James Smith) (in 6 movements: Chorale; 4 solos; Quartette). [January 1863], the words only of which survive.

Two other works were The Poet Laureate's welcome to Alexandra (music composed expressly for this occasion [marriage of prince of Wales]) [June 1863] and, at his Sydney farewell, Souvenir d'Australie (grand mazurka de concert) (pianoforte) [September 1863].


"BOUND TO AUSTRALIA", Empire (28 February 1861), 2

[News], The Argus (2 March 1861), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 September 1862), 1

"MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 September 1862), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 January 1863), 8

"THE OPERA", The Argus (22 January 1863), 5

"THE FUNERAL ODE", The Argus (23 January 1863), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (11 June 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 September 1863), 1

"ANTHONY REIFF DIES. Old Musician Was a Founder of New York Philharmonic Society", The New York Times (7 October 1916), 11

Anthony Reiff, one of the two founders of the New York Philharmonic Society and the oldest surviving member of the society, died yesterday at his home ... He Introduced grand opera in Australia, and was with the original Gilbert and Sullivan opera companies ... as a boy he was a member of Jenny Lind's Orchestra ...

Bibliography and resources:

Katherine K. Preston, "Notes from (the road to) the stage (Travel narrative)", The Opera Quarterly 23/1 (Winter 2007), 103-17

Zoltán Román, Gustav Mahler's American years, 1907-1911: a documentary history, 239 note 92

REILEY, Dennis

Fiddler, convict

Active NSW, 1834


[Convict notices], New South Wales Government Gazette (10 September 1834), 641 

Reiley Dennis, Eliza (5), 29-1204, 54, Cork, fiddler, 5 feet 4, dark ruddy comp. black hair, bright hazel eyes, scar top of forehead in right eye-brow, and right corner of upper lip, from No. 11 Road Party, since 15th July.


See Madame Reilloff JACKSON




Pianist, composer (accompanist and manager of Jenny Claus)

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 19 March 1873 (per Racer, from Mauritius)
Departed Brisbane, QLD, 19 June 1875 (per R.M.S. Brisbane, for Batavia)


[News], The Argus (20 March 1873), 5

A fresh addition to the musical talent of the colony has just been made by the appearance of M. Rekel and Miss Rekel, and Miss Claus, who arrived from Mauritius yesterday, in the barque Racer. Each of the three has a specialty, Miss Claus having a reputation as a violinist, Miss Rekel as a vocalist, and M. Rekel as a pianist and composer; and from journalistic records in their possession, their performances in London, Paris, and elsewhere seem to have been meritorious.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 April 1873), 8

"A crowded and fashionable audience ...", Empire (18 April 1873), 2

"MARRIED", The Argus (25 November 1874), 1

On the 7th inst., at the residence of the bridegroom, Noumea, New Caledonia, by the Rev. Ray, Vital Richard, to Christiana Roeckel (Jeanne Rekel), daughter of Joseph Roeckel, the musical composer.

"DEPARTURES", The Queenslander (26 June 1875), 12


Violinist, composer

Born Miskolc, Hungary, 17 January 1828
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, September 1884
Departed Brisbane, QLD, September 1885
Died San Francisco, USA, 15 May 1898 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"ARRIVAL OF THE SAN FRANCISCO MAIL", The Argus (26 September 1884), 5

"EDUARD REMENYI", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 September 1884), 8

"M. EDOUARD REMENYI ON POPULAR MUSIC", The Argus (6 October 1884), 6

"REMENYI'S CONCERT", The Brisbane Courier (27 August 1885), 3

This evening M. Remenyi will perform the following solos, namely: - "Concerto Romantique," [Benjamin] Goddard - (1) Allegro moderato, (2) Recitativo and adagio non troppo, (3) Canzonetta, (4) Allegro molto - being its second performance in the colonies; "Invitation à la Valse," Weber; "Hommage a Paganini," Remenyi; and in addition to the above selections, M. Remenyi will execute his new "Australian Hymn," composed by himself during his tour through New Zealand, and, by special request, his soul-stirring "Liberty Hymn," assisted by the members of the Remenyi concert party.

"Farewells", Queensland Figaro and Punch (5 September 1885), 6

[News], Morning Bulletin (9 September 1885), 4

... The applause that followed the conclusion of the several pieces was an indication that there are many in our midst who can appreciate high-class music rendered by an artist of such ability as M. Remenyi, and that Rockhamptonites are willing to recognise genuine talent. The most pleasing number was the Carnival de Venice with introduction and improvisation by M. Remenyi, and the storm of applause that succeeded it could only be stopped by that gentleman re-appearing.

"SHIPPING", The Brisbane Courier (9 September 1885), 4

Bibliography and resources:

"Ede Reményi", Wikipediaényi


Isidore Luckstone (pianist), Hattie B. Downing (soprano vocalist), Rudolf Himmer (tenor vocalist)

RENNIE, James ("Professor RENNIE")

Public lecturer, journalist, teacher, controversialist, naturalist, entymologist, lecturer on music

Born Sorn, Scotland, 26 February 1787
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 25 September 1840 (surgeon per Richard Webb, from London, 3 May)
Died Adelaide, SA, 25 August 1867, aged 80 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (WorldCat identities)


"Shipping Intelligence. ARRIVALS", Commercial Journal and Advertiser (26 September 1840), 2 

"ORIGINAL POETRY. To the Editor", The Sydney Herald (17 December 1840), 4 

[Editorial], The Sydney Herald (21 December 1840), 2 

The Proprietor of the Sydney Herald has much pleasure in announcing to his subscribers, that in a few days the editorial management of this paper will be assumed by Mr. James Rennie, M. A., formerly a Professor in the King's College, London, and who is well known in the literary and scientific world. Of the advantages likely to accrue to the numerous subscribers to the Sydney Herald, and he may add to the interests of the Colony generally, it is not for the proprietor to speak, it may be safely left to the test of experience.

ASSOCIATIONS: Frederick Michael Stokes (proprietor; d. 1891)

"MARRIED", The Sydney Herald (2 January 1841), 2 

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (18 June 1847), 1 

MR. RENNIE'S LECTURES ON MUSIC. UNDER THE DISTINGUISHED PATRONAGE OF HIS EXCELLENCY SIR W. DENISON AND LADY DENISON. SIX LECTURES ON MUSIC, Vocal and Instrumental, will be delivered in the Hall of the Mechanics' Institute, by James Rennie, M.A., A.L S., Author of the "Art of Improving the Voice and Ear;" published by S. Prowett, Bond-street, London. The Lectures will be very fully illustrated by the performances of a number of the best available vocal and instrumental musicians in the colony (as per programmes), so as to combine amusement with instruction - the utile et dulce. The first Lecture will be given on Thursday next, at half-past 7 o'clock P.M. Tickets for the course, 10s. 6d. each; family tickets for two, 18s.; for three, 25s.; and for four, 30s. To be had at the Book-shops, and of Mr. Rennie, Battery Point. Single admission, 2s. P.S. - Each Lecture will be advertised separately. June 11, 1847.

"LECTURE", The Courier (19 June 1847), 2 

The first of a course of lectures on Music - Vocal and Instrumental - was delivered by Mr. Rennie, in the Mechanics' Institute, on Thursday evening last. Several members of the Choral Society were in attendance to illustrate the lecture by their performances. The lecturer, in treating upon this subject, rather disappointed us. We expected that the lecture would have been of a more elementary character, making us acquainted with music as a science, and not as in relation to phrenology, &c. We regret to perceive such a limited attendance; and also, that we have not space to advert at greater length to the substance of the lecture. The opening overture was well performed, but we cannot do otherwise than depreciate the taste which led to the adoption of a set of quadrilles as the concluding music of the evening.

"Mr. Professor Rennie's Lecture", Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (26 June 1847), 3 

A sense of public duty alone, compels us to give any notice to the first Lecture on Music, delivered by Mr. Rennie, at the Institute. We were wholly disappointed - we had almost said disgusted, at beholding one of the noblest of human arts and attractive sciences, not only unelucidated, not only unexpanded, but really turned into frothy mockery, by depreciating tirades against Sydney better-paid Lecturers, of course less illustrious than Mr. Rennie; and made a silly jest of, in a "Saturday Magazine" sort of phrenological lecture about bumps, with the indiispenslble concomitants of repellingly coarse and vulgar illustrations! Mr. Professor Rennie, this is altogether too Scotch-like for Tasmania! It will not do! It is too much of the clap-trap of the Highland encyclopaedia lecture-room! Taste and chivalry are not yet buried here in the same grave. We tell you, Mr. Professor, that neither the intellects, nor the morals, of Tasmanians are quite so imbruted, so stultified, as your Courier, anti-pollutionist encomiasts, would fain make distant lands spppose! Play the man of intellect - not the mountebank - and you will have, even here, honor and appreciation, for your reward!

"LECTURE", The Courier (10 July 1847), 2 

The second of a course of six lectures on Music was given in the Hall of the Mechanics' Institute on Thursday evening last, by Professor Rennie. After remarking innt the character of the individual was often stamped upon the lineaments, and written as it were upon the faces of men, a proposition which he illustrated by the citation of various examples, the lecturer proceeded to reason by analogy upon the varieties of "the musical ear." He instanced the fact of persons who had, strictly speaking, no ear for music, who felt exquisite pleasure upon hearing a musical performance, and yet could nut recollect a note. This he attributed in some mensute to the awakened associations of early life, of departed scenes, or times gone by. It was also not less remarkable that pain would sometimes usurp the place of pleasure through the influence of melody. He instanced a lady who could not bear the "Exile of Erin" sung without bursting into tears. "The Minstrel Boy," on some individuals, had a corresponding effect; while the melody of "Sweet Home" would depress a young gentleman whom he mentioned to an extraordinary degree.

The lecturer then proceeded to explain the causes of the musical affection of the ear, and quoted a long extract from Dr. Brown, the only writer who had endeavoured to investigate the subject. The doctor's opinions were ingeniously stated; but, as the lecturer observed, were not particularly intelligible. The periodicity of musical sounds being a subject too important to form part of a lecture, Mr. Rennie postponed his original intention of entering upon the subject; instead of which, he directed the attention of his hearers to the means of improving the ear, and considered that the best method of attaining to a correct appreciation of musical sounds was to learn music by the tuning of instruments. In this pursuit minuteness of tact was easily acquired by exercise. The violin, harp, and guitar were the best instruments for the purpose. As proofs of the efficacy of the plan recommended, it was a well-known fact, that most of tbe pianoforte tuners in the metropolis could only play one tune. This tune bad been mechanically acquired for the exercise of their profession only; and yet they were able to tune the instruments to nicety and perfection. Madame Mara, who was once considered equal to Catalani or Malibran, of former years, and Jenny Lind of the present day, could play the violin at an early age. By constant exercise she acquired the finest delicacy of ear, and had often said, that should she have a daughter whom it was necessary to teach to sing, she should first be taught the violin. These instruments were better adapted than a pitched instrument to convey an impression of the slightest variation of melody, as by sliding the finger over the strings almost imperceptible differences could be created, and the ear would become acute and acquire the finest perceptions. That exercise would improve, was evident from the fact of a schoolfellow of the lecturer, who, without musical ear, learned one song only, and by constant practice became a good singer before he was twenty years of age. Mr. Bacon, of Norwich (the organist,) in a work on "Music" dwelt much upon intonation. A correct intonation would not be obtained if there »as an ignorance of the desired interval. The lecturer therefore recommended that the exercise of tuning should be blended with the practice of the first elements of music. Mr. Rennie dwelt at considerable length upon this subject, and at the conclusion notified his intention to introduce a lady at his next lecture who was an extraordinary adept at the pianoforte.

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 September 1867), 1 

On the 25th of August, at Adelaide, in the 81st year of his age, JAMES RENNIE, A.M., A.L.S., formerly Professor of Zoology King's College, London, author of "Insect Architecture" and many other works on Natural History and in various departments of Literature.

"Death of Professor Rennie", The entomologist's monthly magazine (January 1868), 191;view=1up;seq=201 

Recent advices from Sydney, New Sonth Wales, announce the decease there of this gentleman, at the advanced age of 81. He was some time Professor of Zoology at King's College, and was well known in London, some thirty years since, as the author of "Insect Architecture," "Insect Miscellanies," &c.; and, though he was essentially only a book-maker, there are few Entomologists who have not derived at one time or other much useful information from the first-named work. The appearance of his "Conspectus of British Butterflies and Moths" occasioned the memorable law-suit between Mr. Rennie and the late J. F. Stephens for piracy of the "Illustrations" of the latter author. To the present generation of Entomologists the name of Rennie will appear as a thing of history only; but there are yet living those to whom the above-mentioned litigation was a cause of much excitement and regret.

Musical writings:

The art of improving the voice and ear, and of increasing their musical powers on philosophical principles, adapted to public speakers, musicians, and actors, and particularly useful for the instructors of youth (London: Septimus Prowett, 1825) 

Bibliography and resouurces:

B. B. Woodward, "RENNIE, JAMES", Dictionary of national biography 48 (1896), 18-19 

Frederick G. Page, "James Rennie (1787–1867), author, naturalist and lecturer", Archives of natural history 35/1 (2011), 128-42 (PAYWALL)

"James Rennie", Wikipedia 

ASSOCIATIONS: James Francis Stephens

RENNIE, James Campbell

Singing master

Born Scotland, c. 1846
Active VIC, by 1867
Died Caulfield, VIC, 21 August 1933, aged 87 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (20 March 1869), 3 

"RECENT PUBLICATIONS", The Argus (13 July 1872), 6 

"SKETCHES OF PROMINENT LOCAL MEN ... Mr. James C. Rennie", The Prahran Telegraph (5 December 1891), 3 


Songs for the school room: a collection of songs, rounds and catches for the use of schools, families, &c., selected from the original sources by James Rennie (Sandhurst: J. Brockley, 1869) 

Collection of songs, rounds, catches, &c., rudiments of music, manuscript paper, vocabulary of musical terms; intended for the use of schools, families, classes, &c., selected and compiled by James Rennie (Sandhurst: J. W. Pearson & Co., 1872) 

REYHER, Oscar F. V. (O. F. V. REYHER; Herr von REYHER; Oscar DE REYER)

Professor of music, composer

Arrived (1) Adelaide, SA, by August 1854; departed January 1872 (for London)
Arrived (2) Adelaide, SA, late 1873
Died Adelaide, SA, 4 July 1908, in his 80th year (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Reyher advertised in Adelaide in August 1854 as a "Teacher of Music, Tuner of Pianos". In June 1858, he introduced his Kangaroo polka ("Polka de Concert, pour le Piano, dediée a Madame Bentham Neales, par O. F. V. Reyher") and in July advertised:

KANGAROO POLKA and EMU POLKA, by O. F. V. REYHER, to be had by all Book and Music sellers in Adelaide".

In November 1871, Wigg and Son advertised:

We have purchased from Herr Reyher, who is leaving the colony, the whole of his Music, consisting of NEARLY2,000 PIECES, of high-class Music, chiefly Operatic and Classical, by Foreign Composers and Publishers. Also a Good Selection of Instruction Books. This collection is well known as being unrivalled for quality.

He later gave his surname as "Von Reyher" and "De Reyher".


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (31 August 1854), 3

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (15 June 1858), 1

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (26 July 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (28 November 1871), 3

"PASSENGERS FOR LONDON", South Australian Register (3 January 1872), 6

"THE STRANDING OF THE YATALA", South Australian Register (3 June 1872), 5

"HERR OSCAR REYHER", South Australian Register (10 July 1873), 5

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (9 January 1874), 1

"DEATHS", The Register (6 July 1908), 4


Amateur vocalist, sailor

Active Melbourne, NSW (VIC), September 1849


"RECHABITES", The Argus (10 September 1849), 2 

On Thursday evening last, the Honorable and Independent Order of Rechabites in connexion with the Salford Unity, held a tea meeting in honor of the first establishment of a Tent in Melbourne. After the enjoyment of the cheering beverage, several speeches were delivered on the benefit of teetotalism. The sax-horn band was in attendance, and performed some enlivening airs during the evening. A few of the brethren sang some appropriate songs, and Mr. Reynolds, late of the Sophia brig, gave "The Anchor's Weighed," in flrst-rate style. There were 300 persons present.

See this edition of Braham's The anchor's weighed 


Vocalist, actor

Active Melbourne, NSW (VIC), by November 1848
Active until January 1850 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"AMATEUR CONCERT. MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", The Melbourne Daily News (22 November 1848), 2 

The first of a series of concerts to be given by this Society, was given last night at the Mechanics' Institution to a very crowded audience. The instrumental portion of the Programme was admirably managed. The performers appear to have had frequent rehearsals, or in other words must be rather advanced for a "class." The overtures went off with sparkling precision. We were agreeably surprised by the singing of Mrs. Reynolds, who appeared to much more advantage than in her recent debut at the Queen's Theatre. Her voice there, whether from nervousness or indisposition, we cannot say, seemed harsh and unmusical - last night it was quite the reverse, and appeared to be a high contralto of power and tone. The notes produced were round and full, and appeared tolerably under control. She has had a narrow escape of being a very accomplishcd singer. She requires practice and plenty of it, and instruction in style particularly ...

"THE CONCERT", The Argus (26 January 1849), 2

"THE CONCERT", The Argus (20 April 1849), 2

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 January 1850), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (26 January 1850), 3

REYNOLDS, Barnard (Bernard)

Amateur actor, poet, songwriter, "composer"

Active Melbourne, NSW (VIC), 1847
Departed Melbourne, NSW (VIC), June 1849 (per William Watson, for California) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], Port Phillip Gazette and Settler's Journal (24 May 1847), 3 

... Song, "The Shepherd's Lament" - Mr. Hambleton - Composed by Mr. Barnard Reynolds ...

"VALEDICTORY", The Argus (27 June 1849), 2 

Among the victims of Californian yellow fever, who leave our shores by the William Watson, we regret to perceive the name of Mr. Bernard Reynolds, who as a public speaker and a poet has occupied a prominent position in the community, since he first electrified the Melbourne public by his appearance as an orator, in bush costume, at the great anti-transportation meeting at the Queen's Theatre in 1847. We regard Mr Reynolds' emigration as a serious loss to the community ...

REYNOLDS, Walter James Jones (W. J. J. REYNOLDS)

School master, bass vocalist, music and singing class teacher, choral conductor

Born Abingdon, Berkshire, England, 3 May 1839
Married (1) Annie Maria ROSS (1843-1891), St. Paul's church, Marylebone, London, 5 January 1864
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, January 1866 (steerage passenger, per Sussex, from Gravesend, 21 October 1865)
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 27 January 1866 (per Derwent, from Melbourne, 25 January)
Married (2) Ethel KERMODE (1879-1967), Hobart, TAS, 22 December 1908
Died Hobart, TAS, 10 May 1915, aged 76 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"EDUCATIONAL", The Mercury (21 February 1866), 3 

THE Board of Education have filled up the vacancy of master at the Upper Goulburn-street public school by the appointment of Mr. Reynolds a gentleman lately from England, who was shortly recommended by the Right Rev. Bishop Bromby . . .

"BOARD OF EDUCATION . . . DRAWING AND SINGING CLASSES", The Cornwall Chronicle (14 July 1866), 3 

An elaborate report was read from the Inspector stating that the present time afforded a favourable opportunity for resuming the practice of elementary singing, and [drawing] instruction in the schools, and advocating a moderate degree of encouragement as an experiment, and pointing out the times of attendance, and the modes of conducting the different classes. The report recommended Mr. Reynolds of the Central Schools for the important duty. The chairman remarked that the report coincided with his own views, and spoke warmly in favor of the movement, and suggested 50l a year, for the hours of 10 to 12, one day a week, viz, on Saturday to teach all the schools. Further conversation ensued, in which the value and advantages of music, and drawing were recognized, when the subject was deferred to the next meeting.

"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", The Tasmanian Times (6 November 1868), 2 

MR. REYNOLDS and his adult singing class gave last evening at the Mechanics, a very excellent concert, comprising a well-selected programme of vocal and instrumental music. The choral pieces were very effectively rendered. A very noticeable and praiseworthy feature of this branch of the entertainment was the extreme precision of the "time" and the accurate unison of the combined voices . . . Mr. Reynolds sang "Give me a freshening breeze," in the first part, and "A Friar of orders gray" in the second. Both were encored . . . Mr. Reynolds deserves great credit for the pains he has bestowed upon his pupils, who certainly do their master justice. He is anxious to extend his class, we hear, and those who desire to improve their voices by steady training could not do better than join his ranks.

"DEATHS", The Mercury (11 May 1915), 1 

"PERSONAL", The Mercury (11 May 1915), 4 

We regret to announce the death of Mr. W. J. J. Reynolds, who was for over 20 years headmaster of the Central State school, Hobart. He began his education at the Blue Coat School, England, and left there to become a pupil teacher in a leading school in London, where he remained five years. He then entered as a student the Cheltenham Normal College where he gained a first-class Queens scholarship. He left that college with high certificated, and after being headmaster of Bassaleg school, in the West of England, for three years, came out to Tasmania at the invitation of the Board of Education to take charge of the Goulburn-street State school, Hobart, where great success attended his work. In 1881 Mr. Reynolds was promoted to the Central State school, which long enjoyed the distinction of having the largest average attendance of any school in the city. An indication of his fine qualities as a teacher may be gained from the fact that when a headmaster was required for the Timaru State-school, New Zealand, he was chosen out of 67 applicants for the position. He was, however, persuaded to remain in Tasmania. Mr. Reynolds was always an enthusiast in music. Possessed of a fine bass voice, he was for years the most prominent bass singer of the State, and frequently took leading parts in operas and oratorios. In 1872 Miss Amy Sherwin, Mr. F. A. Packer, and her competed at Melbourne as Tasmanian representatives in the first inter-colonial musical festival, the trio gaining great succsss. He was equally prominent as a conductor, and led the massed choir of 5,000 voices which took part in the Queen's Jubilee of 1887, and the choir of 6,000 voices which assembled at the Diamond Jubilee in 1897, the latter performance being witnessed by from 25,000 to 30,000 people. Mr. Reynolds also played a prominent part in the defence movement in this State, and was for five years a captain in charge of B Company of the Tasmanían Rifle Regiment, and was later promoted to major. He retired from the headmastership of the Central school about six years ago, and had since then resided on his farm in the New Norfolk district. He leaves seven sons and daughters, one of whom is Lady McCall, wife of the Agent-General. He was 76 years of age.

RICE, Walter John (Walter John RICE; W. J. RICE; "Watty" RICE)

Violinist, viola player, orchestra leader, composer

Born Devon, England; baptised Holy Trinity, Exeter, 1 June 1834; son of Michael RICE (c. 1806-1864) and Harriet BAKER (1810-1842)
Married Jane Agnes SPENCER (1838-1914), St. James's church, Sydney, NSW, 23 June 1859
Died Paddington, NSW, 18 October 1898 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

RICE, Herbert Henry

Violinist, orchestra leader, conductor, teacher of the violin, viola and piano

Born Woolloomooloo, NSW, 20 May 1865 (son of Walter John RICE)
Died NSW, 15 March 1954, aged 88


Viola player, conductor


George Hubert Hall was one of his pupils.

Documentation (Walter):

England census, 30 March 1851, Devon, Exeter, Holy Trinity; UK National Archives, HO 107/1868 

221 Trinity Street / Flora Rice / Head / 30 . . .
Walter J. [Rice] / Step Son / 16 / Clerk to Land Draining Company / [born] Exeter . . .

[Advertisement], Empire (2 July 1859), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1859), 1

"THEATRICALS. OLYTMPIC THEATRE, MAITLAND", Bell's Life in Sydney and Sporting Reviewer (24 December 1859), 2 

The members of the Sydney Dramatic Company commenced their reason at this elegant little theatre on Monday evening last . . . The orchestra, under the the direction of Mr. W. Rice, played some first rate selections in brilliant style . . .

"BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 May 1865), 1 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 December 1869), 9

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 January 1870), 4

"NEW DANCE MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 July 1871), 4


... The orchestra left behind them on the Friday night, so as to be in readiness for the mid-day performance of the Pantomime intended for Saturday, the whole of their musical instruments, many of them of much value. These articles have been totally consumed in the destruction of the Opera House. Mr. Walter Rice, the leader of the orchestra has also, through the calamity, lost a valuable collection of manuscript music.

"Music and the Drama", Australian Town and County Journal (21 January 1882), 13

At this concert an efficient and well balanced orchestra, under the leadership of Mr. Walter Rice, performed the well-known overture to "Masaniello".

"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 October 1898), 12

"The Late Mr. Walter Rice", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (29 October 1898), 1052 

The name of Mr. Walter John Rice, who has just died at Paddington, is familiar to every instrumental performer in Australia, and especially to everyone connected with the theatrical profession, which he had been connected as a conductor or instrumentalist for over 40 years. He was the son of a well known musician, the late Michael Rice, conductor of the Exeter Orchestral Society, and a member of a family of musicians. His brother Michael played with Patti on her tours, and when he died three or fours years ago, Patti gave a concert for his widow and family. Another brother, manager of a Welsh Bank, died but the other day; and the death of Mr. Walter Rice closed his generation. Mr. Walter Rice was connected with orchestras of the firm of Williamson and Musgrove since its formation, and three of his sons (one of them the champion tennis player) are in "the firms" orchestras now. One of them, Mr. W. W. Rice came up from Melbourne the bearer of a splendid wreath from the Princess Theatre Orchestra, arriving just too late for the funeral. Her Majesty's Theatre Orchestra, Williamson and Musgrove, their manager (Mr. Goodmann) stage manager (Mr. Bracy) Opera conductor (M. Caron) all sent wreaths, and the funeral was quite a professional gathering at which the Rev. Mr. Gillett was the officiating minister.

[News], Australian Town and Country Journal (29 October 1898), 16

The remains of the late Mr. Walter John Rice, who was in turn musical director of the Princess of Wales, the Victoria, the Royal, the Lyceum, and Her Majesty's Theatres, were interred in Waverley Cemetery on October 19 in the presence of a large number of friends and acquaintances. The deceased gentleman came to the colony in 1854, and for the past forty years led the orchestra at the Easter and Christmas masses at St. Mary's Cathedral.

"SNAP SHOTS", Freeman's Journal (29 October 1898), 14 

Lady Halle being a foreigner and a "star," the Sydney papers, on receipt of the announcement of her death, published portraits and flowery "in memoriams." When Walter John Rice, a true soldier of art, who had done local service as a musician for forty years, passed away last week, these papers could find room for only a few straggling lines. But it's the way of the world. A wealthy butcher, baker, or candlestick-maker would have had a column, "with portrait." Poor old "Watty" Rice, while he was alive, didn't bother his head what the papers said about him, and it is a safe thing to say that his rest will not be disturbed now by any feeling of annoyance. He did not look to the newspapers to give him a character or to pass a post-mortem verdict on his merits. His friends will write his epitaph - "A good artist and a good man." Living pretty well all his life in an atmosphere "poisoned with jealousies, conceits, scandals, and moral lawlessness," as one amiable critic has described the theatrical world, he kept himself healthy and wholesome. From the beginning, forty-four years ago, to the very end he was the same manly, honest, good-hearted gentle man - a model in patience and regularity, scrupulous in the performance of every duty, loyal in his friendships, and blessed with a disposition in which no sort of meanness could find a place. This is a good name to leave.

The pity is that he did not leave us, too, his musical and theatrical recollections. "My Memories - By Watty Rice." What a bright book we might have had. Perhaps he read Emily Soldene's "Recollections" and paused. No one was better able to tell us of the "palmy days" of the Prince of Wales theatre, the old Vic. in Pitt-street, the old Queen's in York-street, and the Royal, to say nothing about the modern Lyceum and Her Majesty's. In his position as musical director in these theatres be knew everybody and saw every thing. He could have told us all about G. V. Brooke and Barry Sullivan: all about the grand old days of Lyster's Italian Opera Company; all about Catherine Hayes and Adelaide Ristori - all about every big singer and actor who has faced the foot lights in Sydney since 1854. Apart from his theatre work, Mr. Rice did great service in helping to popularize orchestral music. He was Paolo Giorza's righthand man, and later, when Roberto Hazon established his excellent professional orchestra - unhappily a thing of the past - the portly "first violin" worked with unsurpassable enthusiasm. Mr. Rice was not a Catholic, yet singularly enough he found his purest pleasure in playing on feast days in Catholic churches. His knowledge of our Church music must have been extraordinary. I do not mean to say that Archbishop O'Reily might not have put him a "puzzler" if Church music was being discussed within the strict stern lines of rubrical orthodoxy. But this I do assert, that Mr. Rice was familiar with every bar of the Mass music of Mozart, Haydn, Rossini, Cherubini, Weber, Gounod, and the other masters who are classed as "secularists" by the white-robed purists of Gregorian unadorned.

I have heard it stated that Mr. Rice played in old St. Mary's at the end of the fifties. Certainly he led the orchestra there on Christmas Day, 1862, William Cordner, the organist, conducting. Cordner, "the grand old man" of Church music in Australia, selected Rice as his leader on all special occasions at St. Mary's - both in the old Cathedral and in the Pro-Cathedral. In a way, Mr. Rice was closely connected with the whole history of St. Mary's choir. He knew old St. Mary's when the Benedictines were the guardians and ministers of the holy place - in the days when Archbishop Polding, still in his dreams, pictured his black-robed brethren established in prosperous communities all over Australia. He was privileged to know the saintly Bishop Davis, distinguished alike as a musician and as a scholar, whose quiet, gentle fancy it was to steal up to the organ-gallery, and there, as in a reverie, play with masterly touch and melting sweetness - his "audience" a few humble souls who happened to be praying in the dim-lit nave or chancel. When Cordner died, John Hill, R.A.M. (whose name cropped up in last week's "Snaps"), was appointed organist. Hill was a gifted and most brilliant player, and his genuinely-improvized solos were truly wonderful. As an organist he was in every respect a first-class artist. Perhaps it was on account of their very high appreciation of his powers that the Cathedral authorities did not have any "state occasion" orchestra while Hill dominated the key-board. This lasted for two or three years. On Mr. Hill's resignation, Mr. John A. Delany (Cordner's favourite pupil) was appointed organist, and the orchestra, with Rice as leader, was again engaged for the festivals.

After Mr. Delany had been for five years organist, the choir was, with the sanction of Archbishop Vaughan, broken up. Under the new regime there was a semi-juvenile choir, and "Professor" Hughes was appointed organist. Father Barsanti, who had a decided weakness for operatic airs, took charge of the evening choir, and introduced a well known melody from "Lucia di Lammermoor," to which the Litany was sung. During this period - about eighteen months - an orchestra, chiefly made up of amateurs, played several times, but not under Rice's leadership. With the restoration of the old order of things, Tom Banks left St. Patrick's to take the organistship, and little Mr. Sussmilch was made conductor. Rice returned to his old post when "the band" was required. And so musical matters went on till the time came for the opening of the new Cathedral. The musical direction of the Triduum was handed over to Mr. Delany, who at once secured Mr. Rice to lead the professional orchestra. That three days' festival, in September, 1882, is "a shining white stone" in the musical history, not of Sydney alone, but of Australia. Would it be possible to ever get together again so magnificent a choir - 300 voices - and all the singers familiar with the music? It was the last great effort of the united Catholic choirs - Delany conducting, Rice leading the orchestra, and Banks at the organ. On the opening day Haydn's Imperial was sung. For the second day (Saturday) Mercadante and Gounod (the St. Cecilia Mass) were the composers selected, and on the third day Mozart's Twelfth was sung. Miss Moon, the brilliant soprano from St. Patrick's, Jim Hinchy, Jack Flynn, McLean the bass, and McCarthy the tenor, were among the soloists. These singers have passed - "where beyond the voices there is peace." The other soloists, all still happily living, were Mrs. F. J. Riley, Mrs. J. I. Hunt, Mrs. Addy, Miss F. Nowlan, Mrs. Banks, Mr. F. J. Hallewell, Mr. Frank Brewer, Mr. J. A. Gread, Mr. W. O'Sullivan, Miss Elsa Sherwin (now Madame Caron), and Mr. T. O'Sullivan. Mr. Delany, whose majestic Triduum March was splendidly performed both at the beginning and at the end of the festival, was presented by the Triduum choir and orchestra with a baton of ebony richly ornamented with gold.

From 1882 to 1898 "Watty" Rice had been a prominent figure in the Cathedral choir on 'extra special' days. He led when Leon Caron was conductor; then when "Daddy" Hallewell took the stick, and continued when Delany (who had been absent from Sydney) again assumed control with the late Neville Barnett as organist. On Barnett's death the post of conductor was abolished, and Delany returned to the organ seat, surrendering it to Ernest Truman on festivals in order to conduct. The steady "leader," with his strong, clear tone, contributed to the grandeur and the solemnity of many memorable scenes in old St. Mary's, in the Pro-Cathedral, and in new St. Mary's. And what a crowd of historic associations spring up with the mention of them!

There was the Te Deum for the recovery of the Duke of Edinburgh. A dark cloud hung over the whole Irish-Catholic community. Men with evil in their hearts and malice on their tongues were basely endeavouring to involve the Irish colonists in "the huge Fenian conspiracy" which never existed. Old Archbishop Polding intended the Te Deum as the Catholic public protest against the act of the wretched mad man O'Farrell. A Sunday afternoon was set apart, and a crowded congregation, including many liberal Protestants, listened to a grand and stately performance. Later on the same Te Deum (Romberg's) was played on the occasion of the welcome to Archbishop Vaughan. Rice was leader again in Mozart's Requiem on the day that all that was mortal of Archbishop Polding was carried to the grave. When Senor San Just, the Spanish Consul, was knighted, and when Sir Patrick Jennings received his Order of St. Gregory, the "first violin" was in his place. On the Jennings day the music was exceedingly fine. To give a summary of Rice's musical services in connection with the new Cathedral, it will suffice to mention the Mozart Requiem for Archbishop Vaughan; Romberg's Te Deum for the arrival of Archbishop Moran; the same Te Deum for his Eminence's reception as Cardinal; Cherubini's Requiem on the day set apart by the Holy Father for a Requiem throughout the whole Catholic world; the Cathedral festival during the Jubilee celebrations of 1888; the Cherubini Requiem for William Bede Dalley during the same year; and the festival on the completion of the sanctuary portion of the Cathedral in 1890.

On Easter Sunday last the veteran violinist remarked, "I believe this is my last time in St. Mary's." I wonder if anyone ever heard Rice play a "show" solo? I never did. In this respect he was without a particle of vanity. When Madame Albani sang in St. Mary's this year, it was Allpress who played the violin obbligato in Gounod's "Ave Maria." Albani did not sing in any other church in Australia. The Cardinal invited her to sing at the Cathedral, and without consulting her concert managers, the eminent Catholic artist at once consented. From time to time one sees Albani's name figuring in the reports of the "festivals" held in the big English Cathedrals, which were built by Catholics, and are used by the Church of England. These are purely professional engagements, admission being at high-class concert rates. So scrupulous was Albani that she would not sing in any of these Protestant places of worship until she had obtained an indulgence from the Holy Father. She has since at a couple of these festivals since her return from Australia. Some "crank" wrote to the Gloucester papers last month complaining that during the Musical Festival he was not admitted to the Cathedral free, that being a place of worship. The "crank" turned up at the Cathedral, and was told he could not be admitted without a ticket. "Do you mean to tell me," he excitedly argued, "that I shall require a ticket to enter the Kingdom of Heaven?" "Well, no," explained the heretical door-keeper; "but you won't hear Mme. Albani in Heaven."

Musical works:

Up in a balloon galop (by Walter J. Rice, Conductor of Orchestra, Prince of Wales Theatre (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1870]) 

Grand galop: The shoo fly [Shoo! fly galop; Shoo fly galop] (by Walter J. Rice) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1871]) 

Bibliography and resources:

Loyau, Notable South Australians (1885), 185 

Documentation (Herbert):

"BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 May 1865), 1

"THE METROPOLITAN LIEDERTAFEL", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 November 1886), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 January 1888), 4

"THE OPRHEUS SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 September 1889), 10

"MR. H. H. RICE'S PUPILS' CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 December 1890), 10

"SYDNEY QUINTET SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 March 1895), 12

? "THE RICE BROTHERS IN LAWN TENNIS", Arrow (8 September 1921), 11

"THE RICE FAMILY", Sunday Times (6 November 1921), 6


Tenor vocalist



Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 May 1842), 3


Vocalist, actor


Violinist, musician

Active Launceston, Melbourne, Adelaide, 1843-50

Go to main page: 


Music publisher, music sellers

Active Sydney, NSW, until 1843


Low's City of Sydney directory for 1844-45

Hudson & Dolan (late Richards), music sell[e]rs, 277 [sic], Pitt st.


Les etrangeres pour le piano forte ... composees par Henry Herz (Sydney: J. Richards & Co., [before 1843] 

Still so gently o'er me stealing composed by Bellini and adapted to the English stage by H. R. Bishop (Sydney: J. Richards & Co., [before 1843] 

See also lithographic copy of the above by Richards's successor, George Hudson 

Bibliography and resources:

Not in Neidorf 1999

See also:


Teacher of psalmody

Active Hobart, VDL (TAS), 1845


"SUPREME COURT", Colonial Times (22 March 1845), 2

... witness had engaged Mrs. Richardson to teach the children of his school Psalmody ... I selected Mrs. Richardson for this purpose from motives of compassion, and because I myself did not believe the accusations against her: I saw no reason why I should not have employed her teaching the children music.


Organ builder

Born London, England, 25 July 1847
Arrived Sydney, NSW, October 1882
Died Stanmore, NSW, 22 May 1926 (NLA persistent identifier)

Bibliography and resources:

G. D. Rushworth, "Richardson, Charles (1847-1926)", Australian dictionary of biography 11 (1988)

RICHARDSON, George Bouchier

Visual artist, honorary secretary Melbourne Philharmonic Society (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Concertina player

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by November 1852


"MR. WALLER", The Argus (19 November 1852), 5

MR. WALLER. This gentleman's entertainment, so novel to a Melbourne audience, came off on Wednesday evening, and we must congratulate him upon the success attending his debut. He is fully deserving of the high opinion expressed by our Sydney neighbours. We could scarcely expect such a diversity of musical talent in one born and bred on the soil, and therefore not being in a position to partake of those advantages enjoyed by our English vocalists, by having continually before him as examples such men as Duprez, Mario, Lablache, and others. Russel's fine scena, "The Ship on Fire", was rendered with a fine combination of passion and artistic skill; but to particularise any one song would be almost doing an injustice to the others. Mr W. has a fine voice, not of very great compass, but full and round in tone. Between each of his performances Mr. Richardson entertained the audience upon the concertina in a very creditable manner, considering it was his first appearance.

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 December 1852), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 December 1852), 1

MR. HENRY RICHARDSON, Professor of the Concertina, (Pupil of Signor Guilio Regondi and Mr. George Case) who has recently arrived from London, is desirous of giving publicity to his intention immediately to commence the practice of his profession. As the Concertina has never been heard at a public performance in this colony, the greater portion of the community are necessarily un-acquainted with the merits and capacity of this delightful instrument; the facility of execution, purity of intonation, harmonic effect, and variety of expression, in every style of composition, sacred and secular, of which it is capable, have secured for it an unqualified supremacy in the higher circles in the United Kingdom, where it is now practised, by both ladies and gentlemen, to a wonderful extent, its recent invention considered. With the view of affording an opportunity to judge of the merits of the instrument, Mr. Richardson purposes giving a Concert, (in conjunction with Mr. Waller, the eminent vocalist) upon which occasion he will perform some of the most admired compositions, selected from popular operas ...

[Advertisement], Empire (18 January 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (18 January 1853), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 January 1853), 3

"CONCERTINA SOIREE", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 February 1853), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 August 1853), 7

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Empire (21 January 1854), 4

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 March 1854), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (21 December 1855), 8


James Waller

John Howson

Pupil of George Case

RICHARDSON, John James Malcolm

Flautist, amateur musician

Born UK, 1 January 1788
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 25 May 1852 (on the Euphrates, from Plymouth, 16 February)
Died Sydney, NSW, 25 December 1880 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", Empire (26 May 1852), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (19 April 1853), 1

"GRAND CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 September 1857), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 December 1858), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 January 1860), 8

"MR. FREDERICK ELLARD'S CONCERT", Bell's Life in Sydney (21 January 1860), 3

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 December 1880), 1

"Obituary", Australian Town and Country Journal (8 January 1881), 8

During the past week the death has been announced of one who for nearly half a century has been connected with the development of musical art in Sydney, and who as an amateur musician was as well-known in every musical circle as the most noted professional artist. On Saturday week, Christmas Day, Mr. John James Malcolm Richardson expired at his residence in William-street, at the advanced age of 93 years (not 94, as stated in the papers), which he would have reached had he lived another week, having been born on January 1, 1788, the year on which - on the 26th of the same month - our colony was founded. From this circumstance his friends, when conversing with the deceased gentleman, used facetiously to call him "Old Colony." Mr. Richardson was in no way infirm or feeble, but when we met him some few weeks before his death, was as hale, hearty, upright, brisk, and jovial as though his "round of days" had still some 20 or 30 years to run, and he spoke of playing his flute "as well as ever." The deceased had always been a most abstemious and temperate gentleman, and his death was the result of a break up of nature. In early life Mr. Richardson had been a lieutenant in the army, and had gone through the wars of the Spanish Peninsula with the great captains of the age, having been present at the battles of Salamanca and Fuentes d'Onoro and others. He was for many years in business in Sydney, and was for some time connected with the wholesale house of Messrs. J. and J. Thompson, of Pitt-street. He had amassed considerable means, and the pretty little cottage which he possessed in Palmer-street, Woolloomooloo, was the scene of constant hospitality dispensed to amateur and professional musicians, by whom he was delighted to be surrounded. Mr. Richardson was a flautist of great skill; he was one of the first founders of the Philharmonic Society, in 1853, and played in its orchestra with Mr. J. Plunkett, Judge Josephson, Messrs. M'Donnell, Rawack, the Deanes and others. He accompanied Catherine Hayes, and Anna Bishop in various pieces at nearly all their concerts, and possessed numerous reminiscences of the latter, including many letters, and a copy of the "Gratias Agimus," written and arranged for flute accompaniment especially by the great artiste. He was particularly proud in the possession of a magnificent silver Boehm flute. He frequently played gratuitously in the opera orchestra, and at various public and private concerts, whenever his exertions could render any service to the cause of music. Mr. Richardson leaves a son in the colony, who has been devoting himself to agricultural pursuits.

"THE MUSICAL CONTROVERSY. To the Editor", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 March 1887), 8

Sir, - I desire, with your permission, to be allowed to make a few remarks on this vexed question, not necessarily for the purpose of opposing any opinions advanced hy M. Henri Kowalski, "Anglo-Australian Musician," or the other writers on the subject, but rather with the object of defending our past musical career against the slurs which are constantly being directed at it ... M. Kowalski is also very hard on these poor unfortunate past "twenty-five years" of ours; and it is to this point that I wish to direct attention ... Twenty-five years ago - and for many years afterwards - we had a Philharmonic Society, whose committee and performing members numbered amongst their ranks many of our foremost men in the worlds of art, literature, and commerce. Need I mention other names than the Hon. J. Hubert Plunkett (Attorney-General), Leopold Rawack, W. MacDonnell, Dr. Foucart, J. J. M. Richardson (the vigorous septuagenarian flautist), Mr. W. Deane, the solicitor, and a dozen or two others, who with commendable regularity, scarcely to be found now-a-days, appeared on the platform at rehearsal and performance, and obeyed the directions of their conductor, as disciples follow the instruction of their Master. The conductor was Mr. John Deane, a thorough, zealous, and skilled musician, one who, like his compeers of that day, was content to practise (with veneration) the works of the great masters to the exclusion of his own pieces. Have there been in the various capitals in the world families like that of the Deanes - and the celebrated Gebrüder Müller, of Brunswick - whoso famous quartet party was kept together in the family for generations? There are many still living, and residing here, who remember the delightful renderings of the great classical quartets given us at the Philharmonic concerts by the brothers John, William, Edward, and Henry Deane ...


Musician, organist, pianist

Born George Town, TAS, 19 June 1866
Died Launceston, TAS, 14 December 1941

Bibliography and resources:

"Richardson, Kate (1866-1941)", Obituaries Australia


Pianist, composer

Born 1835
Arrived Victoria, early 1850s
Active Geelong, VIC, 1859
Departed Melbourne, VIC, 1888 (for Germany)
Died Munich, Germany, 26 November 1896

RICHARSON, Ethel Florence (= Henry Handel RICHARDSON)

Pianist, music teacher, composer, novelist

Born Fitzroy, VIC, 3 January 1870
Died Hastings, England, 20 March 1946 (NLA persistent identifier)

Musical works (Mary Richardson):

Chamber of Commerce galop ("composed by request, and respectfully dedicated to the stewards of the Chamber of Commerce Opening Ball, Geelong, 1859") (Geelong: [?], [1859]) 

Musical works (Henry Handel Richardson):

Guide to the papers of Henry Handel Richardson, MS 133, series 7, songs; National Library of Australia

Bibliography and resources:

Dorothy Green, "Richardson, Ethel Florence (Henry Handel) (1870-1946)", Australian dictionary of biography 11 (1988)

Jodi Clark, "Music in the life of Henry Handel Richardson: a provisional catalogue of her musical compositions: work in progress", Australasian Music Research1 (1996), 353-363

Elizabeth Webby and Gillian Sykes (eds), Walter and Mary: the letters of Walter and Mary Richardson (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 2000)

Michael Ackland, "Only 'a well-schooled interpreter': Henry Handel Richardson's final year at the Leipzig Conservatorium and its authorial recasting", Australian Literary Studies 22/1 (May 2005), 51-60

RICHARDSON, William Albert (after 1865, Albert RICHARDSON; Alberto RICCARDI)

Baritone (basso) vocalist, singing teacher (pupil of Furtado and Garcia), choirmaster, organist, singing master (Board of Education)

Born Huddersfield, Yorkshire, England, 17 June 1839
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1853 (per Ajax, from Liverpool)
Died Dutton Park, South Brisbane, QLD, 11 August 1927


Pianist (pupil of Horsley), contralto vocalist, music teacher

Born Adelaide, SA, 5 March 1853

Died Brisbane, QLD, 17 February 1926


Contralto vocalist


William Albert Richardson, briefly a school singing master (Victorian Board of Education), left Melbourne in 1863 for study in Italy and England (by his own account with Garcia and Furtado). On his return to Melbourne, he made his professional operatic debut early in 1866.

He was moderately successful as a principal singer in the Lyster and Simonsen touring companies (Australia and NZ). He was also a Catholic church organist and choir conductor (St. Patrick's Cathedral Choir, Melbourne, 1876), and managed his own concert and opera presentations. But it was as singing teacher that he appears to have been most prominent (a notable pupil was Benjamin Clark).

He married Adelaide-born contralto Mathilde Mackereth (1853-1926), a pupil of Charles Edward Horsley, in 1870. According to information kindly supplied by family historian Chrissie Macken (2015), a Miss Richardson who sang under his baton around this time was perhaps one of his two half-sisters, Mary Helen or Hilda Margaret.

As well as returning to England (1884-88, where he advertised as a singing teacher under the name Alberto Riccardi), they then lived for short periods in Adelaide, SA (1879-80), Launceston, TAS (1881-82, where he was probably not to be confused with a musical petty thief of the same name, known as the "Harmonious Blacksmith"), New Zealand (1893-95), and Sydney, NSW (1896).

They had moved to Queensland by 1898, and, with short periods in Toowoomba (1906-07) and Bundaberg (1913), Albert was based in Brisbane until his death at an advanced age. Mathilde's eldest sister, Ellen Harriet Mackereth (d.1915), was an Adelaide-based musician and teacher, and leader of Mackereth's Mandoline Band.


[News], The Argus (23 April 1863), 5

At Hockin's Booms, this evening, a grand concert and ball will be given by Mr. W. A Richardson, late singing-master under the Board of Education, on the occasion of his departure for Italy; assisted by Miss Amelia Bailey, Mr. C. E. Horsley, Mr. Marquis Chisholm, and other leading vocalists.

"NEWS OF THE DAY, The Age (24 April 1863), 5

Mr. W. A. Richardson, for some time singing master under the Board of Education, gave a concert and ball last evening, in Hockin's Assembly Rooms, prior to his departure for Italy, where he intends to prosecute his musical studies. There was a large attendance. The artistes were Miss Amelia Bailey, Miss Isoline Mercante, Miss Liddle, and Messrs Donaldson, Woolf Isaacs, Sylvanus Angus, W. Power, Kursteiner, C. E. Horsley, Marquis Chisholm, and L. L. Lewis. Mr Richardson sung "II balen," from "II Trovatore," better known as "When I behold those glances," or "The tempest of the heart." ... Without entering into further details, we may say that the concert was in every way deserving of the patronage it secured. The ball which followed was kept up most merrily until an advanced hour this morning.

[News], The Argus (6 December 1865), 5 

The Lyster Opera Company, we learn, will commence a new season at the Theatre Royal on boxing night, with " Oberon." Mr. W. A. Richardson, a new English baritone, pupil of Garcia and Furtado, engaged by Mr. Lyster in London, will make his debut as Count di Luna, in "Il Trovatore." It is stated that Mr. Richardson has an organ of very rich quality.

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 January 1866), 8

[News], The Argus (6 January 1866), 5

The successful performance of "II Trovatore" by the opera company, at the Theatre Royal, on Saturday evening, was marked by the debut of Mr. Albert Richardson, the new baritone of the troupe ... Mr. Richardson's appearance warrants an expression of pleasure in that the Australian public have a new and able performer in a style that is very grateful ... representation of Il Conte di Luna proved him to be possessor of a sweet cultivated baritone voice, capable of much expression, and perhaps force. It is not robust; and its resonant quality has been scarcely developed, but experience will give it more freedom.

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 April 1868), 8

"MARRIAGES", The Argus (26 September 1870), 4 

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 November 1870), 8 

[News], The Argus (4 May 1874), 5 

The ceremony of opening St. Monica's Church, a Roman Catholic place of worship just completed at Footscray, was performed yesterday ... The musical arrangements were superintended by Mr. Albert Richardson. An efficient choir was present. The principal vocalists were Madame Florence Wekey, Mrs. Richardson, Mr. Charles Beverley, Miss Richardson, and Mr. J. B. Whitty. The musical service comprised the Kyrie, Gloria, and Sanctus, from Mozart's Twelfth Mass, and the Credo, and Agnus Dei from Haydn's No. 1. The offertory piece was Curschman's "Te Prego," which was sung by Madame Wekey, Mrs. Richardson, and Mr. Beverley.

"ST. PATRICK'S CHOIR", Advocate (5 February 1876), 6 

Mr. Albert Richardson has been appointed conductor of the choir of the Metropolitan Church. Mr. C. A. Tracy continues to act as organist and director.

[News], Evening Star (25 February 1876), 2 

Mr. Talford Young, agent for the Simonsen Opera Troupe, informs us that his advices by the Albion and a cablegram last night intimate the completion by Mr. Simonsen of his arrangements for bringing over an opera troupe, the principal members of which will be Prima donna assoluta, Madame Fanny Simonsen mezzo-soprano, Miss Florence Fisher contralto ... primi baritoni, Mr. Albert Richardson (formerly with Lyster's English Company), Signor Pietro Luisette, Mr. Henry Hodgson; ... The Company leave Melbourne on the 29th inst.

"RECENT PUBLICATIONS", The Argus (1 November 1878), 7 

"MR. ALBERT RICHARDSON'S FAREWELL CONCERT", The Argus (28 February 1879), 7

A farewell benefit concert was given last night in favour of Mr. Albert Richardson, a gentleman who has for many years past maintained a prominent position m Melbourne musical circles as teacher of the art of singing, and who now brings his professional career to a close in this place in the midst of a large number of friends, who have been his former pupils.

[News], The South Australian Advertiser (31 March 1880), 4 

At the conclusion of the service at St. Laurence's Church, North Adelaide, on Easter Sunday morning, the members of the choir adjourned to the vestry, where the Rev. Father Cormac, on their behalf, presented Professor Richardson with a copy of Mozart's Twelfth Mass, Haydn's Imperial Haas, and Rossini's Stabat Mater, elegantly bound up in one book, as a slight token of esteem and an acknowledgment of the efficient manner in which that gentleman had conducted the musical portion of the service ...

[News], Launceston Examiner (28 September 1881), 2 

MRS. ALBERT RICHARDSON, pianiste, notifies that she visits and receives pupils.

"OPERATIC CONCERT", Launceston Examiner (1 February 1882), 2 

[Advertisement], Hastings and St. Leonards Observer [UK] (4 October 1884), 2

SIGNOR ALBERTO RICCARDI (From London, Milan, and Naples) (éléve of the famous Milanese and Neapolitan Schools), PROFESSOR OF SINGING, Primo-Baritono Assoluto Royal Italian Opera, Instruction in Italian Method of Voice Production and Development, and the Art of Singing. RESIDENCE: "NAPOLI", CAREW ROAD, THE AVENUE, UPPERTON, EASTBOURNE. St. Leonards visited every Week. Circulars at Whittaker and Williams' Library.

[Advertisement], Hastings and St. Leonards Observer [UK] (5 May 1888), 2

"THE HARMONIOUS BLACKSMITH AGAIN", Daily Telegraph (31 January 1887), 2 

About six years ago William Albert Richardson, known here as "the harmonious blacksmith," and employed at good wages in a coachbuilder's establishment, managed by his musical ability and insinuating manner to get into respectable society. He was introduced to Mr. M. Susman, who was then staying at the Brisbane Hotel, and during Mr. Susman's absence he entered his bedroom and stole a travelling bag containing over £500 worth of watches and jewellery, a considerable portion of which was sometime afterwards found secreted in the bush over the Windmill Hill ...

[Advertisement], The Age (19 May 1891), 8 

VOICE PRODUCTION and ARTISTIC SINGING Notice of Arrival from London. Mr. ALBERT RICHARDSON (Signor Alberto Riccardi of the London Musical World), Principal Baritone Italian and English Opera; and of the Royal Albert Hall, St. James's Hall, Crystal Palace and Promenade Concerts, Her Majesty' Theatre, London, has COMMENCED TUITION At his rooms, Austral-buildings, Collins-street east. Day and Evening Lessons. Circulars at Allan's, Glen's, and 8 Avoco-st., S. Yarra.

"MR RICHARDSON'S CONCERT", Evening Star (26 October 1893), 2 

"HIS MAJESTY'S THEATRE. MARITANA", The Brisbane Courier (1 May 1902), 4 

"MR. ALBERT RICHARDSON", Darling Downs Gazette (16 March 1906), 5 

"OBITUARY", The Brisbane Courier (15 August 1927), 15 

The musical public of Brisbane and abroad will regret to learn of the death of Mr. Albert Richardson, which occurred on August 11 at his residence, Deighton-road, Dutton Park. The late Mr. Richardson was a pupil of the celebrated Manuel Garcia, the master of Patti, Mario, and Marchesi. During a long and successful career on the operatic stage Mr. Richardson was principal baritone of Lysters, Carl Rosa's and Simonsen's Italian and English opera companies. For many years he was a leading teacher of singing in Melbourne, and conductor of St. Patrick's Choir, He gave many concerts in that city for charitable causes, and in consequence was made a life governor of the Melbourne Hospital. A great number of singers owe their success on the operatic stage to the training imparted by him. Later in his career Mr. Richardson began activities in Brisbane, where he successfully produced, with his own pupils, the English opera "Maritana," in His Majesty's, which was from a musical standpoint a great advance on any previous production from local talent of grand opera. Although Mr. Richardson lived in retirement during the past few years his expert advice on all matters pertaining to the voice was constantly sought, and he also was a frequent contributor to the "Courier" on musical matters. An extract from the Melbourne "Age" of January 8, 1866, records the debut in Melbourne of Mr. Richardson in Verdi's "II Trovatore," in the heavy part of Count di Luna. It records an enthusiastic reception, and "acquitted himself so well as to bring down the curtain amidst a perfect tumult of applause." Mr. Lyster was congratulated on having secured the new baritone, who was confidently expected to make other and even more decided triumphs.


Albert Richardson, The art of singing and the formation, development, & cultivation of the voice: after the methods of the old Italian masters: to which is added a biographical and descriptive list of the most celebrated vocalists of the present century (Melbourne: George Robertson, 1878) 

Bibliography and resources:

Love 1981, 78, 88, 89, 192

Gyger 1999, 136, 155

William Albert Richardson, The Rex Sinnott Site: Genealogy of the Sinnott and related families 



Active Adelaide, SA, c.1859-66 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (24 December 1859), 1 

THIS EVENING. AT THE SHADES, The NONDESCRIPT will give his New Song abounding with local hits, particularly upon CLARKS AND TAILORS. THE SONG OF AUSTRALIA, Music by Herr Ling, will be given by an old favorite. Russell's Songs by the Basso. Solos by Messrs. Schrader, White, and Richelieu.

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (6 February 1860), 1 

WHITE'S BOOMS. TUESDAY, February 7, 1860.
Pianist - Mr. Richelieu. Cornet-a-Piston - Mr. McCulloch.
Vocalists- Mrs. A. Wallis (first appearance since her arrival from Melbourne).
Miss Louisa Grant (from tho City Hall, Glasgow), her first appearance in Adelaide.
Tenor - Mr. Nash. Basso - Mr. Ball.
Local Songs by the celebrated Nondescript, and Sam Cowell's burlesques in character. The strictest order will be observed, and the study of the Manager will be to provide a cheap, rational, and first class entertainment.


Violinist, band leader, orchestra leader, composer, teacher

Active Ballarat, VIC, by May 1856
Died Adelaide, SA, 18 Octover 1888 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Richty was leader of the band at Ballarat's Charlie Napier Theatre by March 1857. He took his benefit there in August, and later that month, with Achille Fleury as his assistant leader, he brought together a "Monster Band" for a "grand musical treat a la Jullien" (see advertisement for complete list of personnel). When his engagement with the theatre came to an end in November 1858, he advertised for other engagements.

He was directing the Star Orchestra at the Alhambra in Bourke-street, Melbourne, in May 1862, and in 1869 was victim of an assault in Carlton. He continued to work in Melbourne throughout the decade, toured to Sydney with the Lyster Opera in 1870, and played in Zelman's opera orchestra in Melbourne in 1873. According to his own later account, he was the first teacher of the young Melbourne-born violin virtuoso, John Kruse.

He directed and arranged music for many light theatrical productions, during one of which, in Sydney in June 1871, his own composition, The New South Wales anthem (lost) was given for the first time. He also toured to New Zealand in 1868 and 1879, and to Tasmania in 1878. In semi-retirement in Adelaide in 1886, he advertised:

HERR CARL RICHTY, the first teacher of the greatest violinist in Europe (Herr Kruse) is desirous of giving instructions to a few pupils, either at their own homes or at his private residence, No. 6. GRENFELL-STREET EAST.


"BALLARAT", The Age (28 May 1856), 3 

... Great praise is due to the leaders of the orchestra, Mons. Fleury and Herr Richty, for the able manner in which they performed their parts, and it is to be regretted that their efforts failed to draw a better filled house.

[Advertisement], The Star (7 March 1857), 3

"CHARLIE NAPIER", The Star (6 August 1857), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (18 August 1857), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (20 August 1857), 3 

. . . The Proprietor having determined upon affording the inhabitants of Ballarat, and its environs, a grand musical treat - a la Jullien - has engaged the most celebrated artistes in the colonies, thus forming
A MONSTER BAND, The solo performers consisting of
Herr Richty and Herr Weideman, 1st Violins.
Monsieur Feon, and Herr Rodi, 2nd Violins.
Herr Keitel, and - Navaiski. Tenor.
Herr Elliott, Contra Bass.
Herr Bohler, Flute.
Herr Bouleke, 1st Clarionet.
Herr Holzapfell, 2nd Clarionet.
Herr Vohr, Oboe.
Herr Ide, 1st Cornet.
Herr Busse, 2nd Cornet.
Herr Schulze, Trombone.
Mr Parker, Pianist.
Monsieur PIETRO CANNA, on the Drums.
Leader of the Band, HERR RICHTY . . .

"THE TORCH LIGHT PROCESSION", The Star (20 January 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (16 September 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (5 November 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 May 1862), 8

[Advertisement], Grey River Argus (18 July 1868), 3

"INTERCOLONIAL NEWS", Grey River Argus (16 February 1869), 3

"SHIPPING", Australian Town and Country Journal (29 October 1870), 28

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 June 1871), 8

[News], The Argus (27 February 1873), 4

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Mercury (28 august 1878), 2

[Advertisement], Auckland Star (26 June 1879), 1

[Advertisement], The South Australian Advertiser (25 February 1886), 1

"Sudden Death", The Express and Telegraph (19 October 1888), 2 

About 10 p.m. on Thursday a musician named Carl Richty died suddenly at his house in Grenfell street. Dr. Ellison was called in, but could do nothing. Deceased was in his usual health on Wednesday evening when he played at the Theatre, The coroner is making enquiries.

Bibliography and resources:

Anne Doggett, "And for harmony most ardently we long": musical life in Ballarat, 1851-1871 (Ph.D thesis, University of Ballarat, 2006) 


Comic vocalist, actor, music hall impresario, philanthropist

Born London, 4 December 1843
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 28 November 1871 (per Lammermuir, from London, 6 September)
Died London, 13 October 1911 (NLA persistent identifier)


[News], The Argus (30 September 1871), 4

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Argus (29 November 1871), 4

"THE LATE MR. HARRY RICKARDS. DEATH IN LONDON YESTERDAY", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 October 1911), 17

"THE LATE MR. HARRY RICKARDS. A REPRESENTATIVE FUNERAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 December 1911), 5

"THE HARRY RICKARDS DINNER", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 December 1911), 6

Relevant musical items:

Doing the block (music by Henry Benjamin; words by Marcus Clarke; sung by Harry Rickards) 

Prints with portraits of Rickards:

My darling mignonette (song; words by William Carlton; music by E. N. Catlin; sung by Harry Rickards) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen, [1872]) 

Walking in the starlight (written by W. H. Delehanty; composed by E. N. Catlin; Sung ... by Harry Rickards) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen, [1873]) 

Bibliography and resources:

Martha Rutledge, "Rickards, Harry (1843-1911)", Australian dictionary of biography 11 (1988)

Gae Mary Anderson, Harry Rickards: a performance-centred portrait from music hall to Vaudeville (Ph.D. thesis, University of Sydney, 1998/1999) (DIGITISED)


Master of the band of the Royal Artillery, ? bandsman (40th Regiment), ophicleide, trombone, horn player, composer

Born Lewes, Sussex, England
Arrived (with 40th Regiment), 1852
Died Sydney, NSW, April 1872 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also Band of the 40th Regiment

See also Band of the Royal Artillery


Riddett served in the 40th Regiment from 1829. Presumably a member of the band on arrival in Australia late in 1852, he then took his discharge in 1853. He was master of the band of the Royal Artillery in Sydney from 1858 to 1860, possibly longer.

He played professionally in orchestras, including for Lyster during 1865 and 1866. By 1869 was landlord of the Imperial Hotel, East Sydney.

His documented compositions are a Bohemian quadrille and a National quick march.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 December 1858), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (2 July 1859), 3

[Advertisement], Empire (4 July 1859), 6

"FUNERAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 November 1859), 8

"BOTANIC GARDENS", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 March 1860), 5

"BOTANIC GARDENS", The Sydney Morning Herald (23 March 1860), 5

[Advertisement], "YOUNGE'S ATHENAEUM", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 March 1863), 1

"Newcastle Volunteer Artillery Band ...", The Newcastle Chronicle (19 December 1863), 3

"CLEARANCES", Empire (16 August 1865), 4

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (8 September 1865), 1

[Advertisement], The Mercury (3 January 1866), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 March 1866), 8

"SHIPPING NEWS", The South Australian Advertiser (20 September 1866), 2

[Advertisement], Empire (29 November 1866), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 July 1869), 8

"FUNERALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 April 1872), 10

"JURORS FINED FOR NON-ATTENDANCE AT A CORONER'S COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 April 1872), 4

Bibliography and resources:


RIDDLE, Sophia (Sophia RIDDLE; Mrs. Robert GIBSON)

? Vocalist, pianist, owner of bound album of sheet music

Married Robert GIBSON, Geelong, VIC, 1864
Died Geelong, VIC, 1906 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)



Active Sydney, NSW, 1842

RIELY, Master

Boy vocalist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1844


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 May 1842), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 June 1844), 3


Orchestral musician

Active Sydney, NSW, 1854


[Advertisement], Empire (25 August 1854), 1

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (26 August 1854), 3



Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 May 1842), 3



Active Hobart, TAS, 1855


"THE FIRE IN BATHURST STREET", Colonial Times (24 July 1855), 3

... Mr. Riley is a musician ...


Comic vocalist, Irish comic vocalist

Born England/Ireland, 16 June 1819
Arrived VDL (TAS), c. 1840
Active Sydney, NSW, 1840s Active Melbourne, VIC, by c. 1850
Died North Fitzroy, VIC, 17 December 1911, "the day previously 92 years and 6 months of age" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

RILEY, Elitia (Miss Elitia RILEY; Mrs. Edwin BRASSEY)

Dancer, vocalist, entertainer

Born ?, daughter of John RILEY
Married Edwin BRASSEY, VIC, 1871


"THE VICTORIA THEATRE", Bendigo Advertiser (3 May 1859), 2 

This pretty little theatre continues to sustain us reputation, and attracts nightly a large number of visitors. A great addition has lately been made to the usual entertainments in the performances of Mr. Riley, who is highly successful as an Irish comic singer, and gives other amusing descriptions of song in a manner that really deserves very considerable praise. Mr. John Robertson, the Scotch vocalist, and dancer, adds in no small degree to the interest of the entertainments, and Master Burgess seems to improve vastly both in his ballad singing and dancing. A visit to this place of amusement will amply repay those who wish to pass a really pleasant evening.

"STAGE VETERANS", Examiner (20 January 1903), 6 

Out at Clifton 'Hill there are the old Actors' Homes, where some of the veterans, after a long career on the stage, are able, through the actors' fund, to live in peaceful retirement after a long and faithful service on the boards. Mr. John Riley, or "Old Johnny Riley," as he is fondly remembered by his old associates, is, next to Mr. George Coppin, the oldest professional in Australia, having made his debut as a comic singer at the Queen's Head Concert Rooms, Lincoln's Inn Fields, in 1835. As he was singing before the public as recently as 1898 it will be seen that his stage career extends over a period of 63 years.

Mr. Riley came to Tasmania as far back as 1840, and during 11 years' experience in the tight little island he appeared in Ratford's Circus - the first circus ever held in Australia - and he made his first appearance in Melbourne at the old Queen's Theatre, under the management of Charles Young, in 1851, where he sang the comic songs in the interludes. In those days the bill included a Short comedy, a drama, an interlude, and a side-splitting farce - dramatic fare to suit all tastes. The veteran cannot calculate a tenth of the songs he has sung or the comic parts he has acted. He has played clown in both circuses and pantomimes, and in spite of his age is a hale and vigorous old man. He can sit down at a piano to-day and sing a comic song as lively as a much younger man . . .

"THEATRICAL TATTLE", Truth (20 October 1906), 8 

John Riley, one of the inmates of Melb. Distressed Actors' Homes, is 87 years of age. He commenced his career as a comic singer with Rowe's Circus in 1852.

"OLD COLONISTS' HOME", The Argus (31 March 1909), 9 

. . . Among those present were two old-time actors - Mr. John Riley, who will be 90 years old next month, and who in 1840 arrived in Melbourne, and sat under a giant gum-tree in Lonsdale-street - and Mr. W. D. Bates, aged 82 years.

"THE LATE JOHN RILEY", Weekly Times (23 December 1911), 8 

The death, occurred on Dec. 17 at the Old Colonist's Homes, North Fitzroy, of Mr. John Riley, who the day previously was 92 years and six months of age. The old gentleman was at one time a well-known comedian, and as far back as 1849, he was a performer with Radford's circus. He also appeared behind the footlights at the old Queen's Theatre in Queen street, near Little Bourke street, and toured the States with variety shows. For a considerable time he was a resident of the Old Actors' Homes at North Fitzroy, which were subsequently taken over by the old Colonists' Association. Mr. Riley, who had been ailing for a long time, was carefully tended by his daughter, and he passed away peacefully at 11 o'clock on Sunday morning.

RILEY, John Augustus

Tailor and Professor of Music

Active West Maitland, NSW, 1857 (brother-in-law of Marcella KELLY)


"MARRIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 August 1857), 1

On the 10th instant, at the Roman Catholic Church, West Maitland, by the Very Rev. Dean Lynch, and afterwards by the Rev. W. Curney, at the Wesleyan Chapel, Mr. John Augustus Riley, tailor and professor of music, brother of Francis Leigh Riley, Esq., resident apothecary of the Maitland Hospital, and second son of Mr. John Riley, tailor, to Harriet, relict of the late Edwin Hinchcliffe, of the Staffordshire Ware and Glass House, and second daughter of J. Hazel, Esq., formerly of Ship Quay-street, Londonderry, Ireland.

RILEY, William Russell

Composer, songwriter, musicseller, publican, newspaper editor

Born London, 1829
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1847
Active Goulburn, NSW, by 1855
Died Goulburn, NSW, 11 August 1910


[Advertisement], The Goulburn Herald (23 June 1855), 3

AT the Goulburn Herald Office, price 2s., "THE GOULBURN POLKA." COMPOSED BY W. R. RILEY.

"COMPLIMENTARY DINNER TO DR. GERARD", The Goulburn Herald (6 October 1855), 2

Mr. Sigmont Presided at the pianoforte ... The Chairman, in proposing the health of His Excellency the Governor-General, remarked that Sir William Denison was evidently a man of talent and energy. Although comparatively a stranger amongst the colonists, he was favorably known to them by his anxiety to promote railway communication, and, therefore, he deserved to be regarded as a friend of the people. (Loud applause, and drank with all the honors.) Air: The Railway Galop. On the motion of the Noble Grand, three cheers were given for the Railway. Air: The Goulburn Polka.

[Advertisement], The Goulburn Herald (19 April 1856), 5

"COMMERCIAL. GOULBURN", Goulburn Herald (2 February 1891), 3

"New Music", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (7 April 1900), 2

WE have received a copy of "Australia Fights for Britain's Rights," composed by Mr. Percy F. Hollis, conductor of the Goulburn Liedertafel. The words are by Mr. W. R. Riley, and, as their title implies, reflect the prevailing warlike sentiment of the time ... The song is one of the best which the present national feeling has brought forth.

"DEATH OF MR. W. R. RILEY. A VETERAN JOURNALIST", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (11 August 1910), 2


Goulburn polka ([Goulburn: Herald Office, 1855]; NO COPY IDENTIFIED

Selections from the humourous [sic] writings of W. R. Riley (Goulburn: Herald Works, Goulburn, 1884)

Australia fights for Britain's rights ( words by W. R. Riley; music by Percy F. Hollis) (Sydney: W. H. Paling, [1900])

Bibliography and resources:

Ransome T. Wyatt, Goulburn writers and literature [manuscript], NLA


Woolcott and Clarke in Sydney also advertised that they had published a Goulburn polka, no copy of which has been identified, and was probably an imported title.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 December 1852), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 July 1853), 2


Song composer

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1854


[Advertisement], The Argus (22 December 1854), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (26 December 1854), 8

THE Song of the Bush. Tonight, at the Theatres, principal Grand Concert, and Assembly Room.

[Advertisement], The Age (1 January 1855), 6 

"NEW SONG", The Argus (23 January 1855), 5

We have received a copy of an original song, published by Mr. Cyrus Mason. which has for its title The Song of the Bush. It is illustrated by a lithograph of rather primitive execution, which depicts four hirsute bush men, engaging themselves with a smoke and bottled beer, in the foreground a fifth frying chops, and three old men kangaroos hopping about in the distance. The melody of the song, which is in C, is light and pretty, but the poetry may be excepted to in some few particulars ...

Musical works:

Australian song: The song of the bush ("words by Velocipede") ([Melbourne: Cyrus Mason, lithographer, 1854])


RING, Mrs.

Teacher of music (Pianoforte, theory of music on the Logierian system, singing)

Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1844


[Advertisement], The Austral-Asiatic Review, Tasmanian and Australian Advertiser (5 January 1844), 2 

[Advertisement], The Courier (5 January 1844), 1 

EDUCATION, - Mrs. RING begs to announce that the vacation will close the 24th of January, at which time she has arranged to form a class for pupils who are desirous to obtain instruction in the English, French, Italian, and Spanish Languages, the Pianoforte (theory of music on the Logerian system) and singing, which will be available both to private pupils who may attend for class instruction only, as also to the resident and daily pupils. For terms and prospectus, apply to Mrs. Ring, No. 19, Davey-street, Hobart Town. January 5.

RING, James

Convict, vocalist, singer, Windsor Church, St. John's Church, Parramatta

Born c.1799
Arrived NSW, 11 October 1816 (convict per Mariner, from England, May)
Active Parramatta, until c.1825


[Convict notice], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (12 February 1824), 4 

[Advertisement], The Australian (4 August 1825), 4 

To the editor of the Express ... Ring was especially assigned to and maintained by the Reverend Clergyman, for the purpose of singing in church, and was never known to be absent from this important religious service ...

HRA, I, 11, 309, 718, 722-63 (inquiry into charges against James Ring, August 1825)

[309] [statement by Samuel Marsden] ... I felt much hurt for my Servant that he should be punished for my kindness to him, which his good conduct merited for the last seven years. Ring was afterwards moved from Prison to the Convict Barrack, and prohibited from Coming to Church on the Sabbath-day, tho' he had been one of the Singers, and ordered to work in the Gaol Gang, the most degrading of all Situations in the Colony, until he was removed to Sydney Convict Barrack.

[718] ... Soon after this, Ring was recommended to The Revd. Samuel Marsden, Senior Chaplain of the Colony, by the Revd. Mr. Cartwright and also by William Cox, Esquire, a Magistrate at Windsor. Whether Mr. Cox informed Mr. Marsden of the Conviction of Ring does not expressly appear. Mr. Cox himself states, as one of his reasons for recommending Ring to Mr. Marsden, that he wished to get him out of the Gaol Gang at Windsor, because he was under an imputation of stealing from his Master, which he did not consider to have been proved; which rather leaves the inference that something must have been said about the suspicion, at least, under which Ring had fallen, as his conviction and punishment were then circumstances of recent occurrence; and this inference would seem to be strengthened by the statement of Mr. Cartwright that he had enquired into the circumstances of Ring's case, and the impression produced upon his mind was favorable, and it was in consequence of such impression that Mr. Cartwright recommended him to Mr. Marsden as a Singer.

[723] ... It appears that Dr. Douglass was sometimes in the habit of attending Mr. Marsden's family worship, and that Ring was usually present on such occasions; but it seems also that Ring was a Singer in the Church, and attended at Mr. Marsden's house in Company with other Singers from time to time ...

[728] WILLIAM COX ... Examined ... I knew James Ring. He was in the Government Town Gang at Windsor, two or three years before he was assigned to Mr. Marsden. He was employed at Windsor as Painter and Glazier in doing the Government work. During the time he was at work, I observed that he was a remarkably clean well-dressed man and attended the Church regularly, which first brought him to my notice. He was a regular Singer in the Church. I recommended him to Mr. Marsden as a Singer in the Church, as I thought he would be of more service at Parramatta than at Windsor, as our Choir was very bad. I assigned him to Mr. Marsden as a Singer, for which he had applied, stating at the same time that he was a Painter and Glazier. Mr. Marsden mentioned something, I do not recollect what, of his first singer being dead. He was assigned to Mr. Marsden, as Magistrates had been in the habit of assigning Servants to other persons ...

[729] THE REVD. ROBERT CARTWRIGHT. Examined ... He was a quiet well-conducted man, and. when I saw him in Mr. Marsden's service, he thanked me tor procuring him so good a place. I fell satisfied, from the confidential manner with which Mr. Marsden and his family and in particular Mrs. Marsden treated him, that he had proved himself a faithful Servant. I believe that he acted as a Singer in Mr. Marsden's Church, as he came always to me to know the Psalms he should sing, when I have officiated for Mr. Marsden.

[736] SUSAN PRISCILLA BISHOP ... Cross-examined ... Mr. Kenyon and one or two of the Singers at the Church have been in the habit of attending at Mr. Marsden's family worship. It is not, that I am aware, a common understood thing that any respectable person may attend at Mr. Marsden's Worship on a Sunday evening. I know a person named Pritchard. He is a Ticket of Leave Man, and he was one of the Singers. I know a man named Newsome. He was a Singer ...

JAMES ELDER ... Examined ... [738] ... Mr. Marsden said, "You know he [Ring] is one of my Singers and I allow him to lodge at the Clerk's [Kenyon's] because he is one also."

[779] ... Mr. [William] Cox adds that it was he that assigned Ring to Mr. Marsden, who said he wanted a Singer for the Church, and it was proved that he was always employed as such Singer on Sundays and in whatever Mr. or Mrs. Marsden had to do on Week days ...

Bibliography and resources:

"James Ring", Convict Records 


Professor of Music (Pianoforte, Singing, Harmony, Composition)

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1855


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 September 1855), 3

RISLEY, Monsieur

Dancer, acrobat

Active Launceston, VDL (TAS), 1846


[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (2 May 1846), 340

"THE THEATRE", The Cornwall Chronicle (20 May 1846), 384

Monsieur Risley's "posturing feats" are extraordinary, and gave unlimited satisfaction. Mr. Newton's dancing in the ancient highland fling was good, but was witnessed on Monday under the disadvantage of certain vociferations by the "gods" which we will not further allude to. [Thereafter, the Sailor's Hornpipe was billed to Risley.]

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (10 June 1846), 440

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (17 June 1846), 461

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (4 July 1846), 512

RITA, Pauline (Pauline RITA)

See joint entry with her husband John RADCLIFF

RITCHLER, Mr. (? Carl)


Active Adelaide, SA, by 1855


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (9 April 1855), 3 

[Advertisement], Adelaide Times (12 April 1855), 1 

? "POLICE COURT - ADELAIDE", Adelaide Times (24 September 1857), 3 

RIVERS, Mrs. (Mrs. RIVIERES, from the London Concerts)


Active Melbourne, VIC, late 1850


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 November 1850), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 December 1850), 3


See George Rivers ALLPRESS

ROACH, Charles

Teacher of Pianoforte and Singing

Active Adelaide, SA, 1859 ("A pupil of F. Rees and Mendelssohn Bartholdy in Dresden")


? [Advertisement], South Australian Register (16 August 1852), 1 

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (23 June 1859), 1

MR. CHARLES ROACH, a Pupil of F. Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, in Dresden, is the honour to inform the Ladies end Gentlemen of Adelaide and vicinity of his intention to give LESSONS PIANOFORTE-PLAYING and SINGING. For particulars, apply to Mr. C. Gries, bookseller, 39, Rundle-street.

ROACHE, John Smyly

Cornet and cornopean player, bandsman (band of the 99th Regiment)

Regiment active Australia, from 1843
Died Hobart, VDL (TAS), 29 September 1848, aged 23

See also Band of the 99th Regiment


"THE BAND OF THE 99TH", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 September 1844), 3

[Advertisement], The Australian (29 November 1845), 1

"MRS. BUSHELLE'S FAREWELL CONCERT", The Australian (18 June 1846), 3

... we must make mention of the Solo on the Cornopean, by a Bandsman named Roach, which was beautifully executed, and which displayed a mastery over the instrument seldom equalled, if ever excelled.

"CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 June 1846), 2

"DEATHS", Launceston Examiner (4 October 1848), 6

Bibliography and resources:

[Memorial plaque at Anglesea Barracks, Hobart]: Sacred to the memory of John S. ROACHE Late of the band 99th Regt. Who died on the 29th Septr 1848 Aged 23 years.

ROBBIO, Agostino

Violinist ("pupil of the immortal Paganini")

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, October 1862
Departed Sydney, NSW, March 1863 (for New Caledonia)
Died London, England, April-June 1898 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Later in 1863, Robbio was the first concert violinist to visit Japan. He had visited Brazil as early as 1845. Later in life he was court violinist to the queen of Spain.


"ROYAL ITALIAN OPERA", London Evening Standard (18 August 1854), 3

Mr. A. Harris, the stage manager at the Royal Italian Opera, had a benefit concert last night ... The only novelty of the night was the debut of Signor Robbio, a new violinist, who is described as being a pupil of Paganini. He played twice, a concerto on themes by Bellini, and a "Valse Diabolique." Signor Robbio affects the ultra-illegitimate school. He has no other end in view than the whimsical and the absurd. In exploits of this class he is an undoubted master; and he performed feats upon the instrument which in fantastic and senseless extravagance have probably never been equalled. The air from the Sonnambula and other operas of Bellini he caricatured as they have never been caricatured before; though it was in the "valse" that the full extent of his facility in the arts of grimace was developed. He squeaked, moaned, grinned, sighed, and scratched with inconceivable dexterity. Few could refrain from laughing at the antics which he realised, the acquisition of which must have exacted toil ineffable. Music was never in our experience exposed to such varied and grotesque mockery, and with popular audiences Signor Robbio would be pronounced a god. His cleverness, no doubt, is unsurpassable, but so wilful and unrelieved a prostitution of talent we are glad to say is unique.

"M. JULLIEN'S CONCERTS", Morning Post [London] (31 October 1854), 5

Drury-lane Theatre was crowded in every part last night by M. Jullien's admirers, who hailed their idol and his extraordinary music with a vociferous, fanciful, and exuberant enthusiasm peculiar to promenade concert audiences. Nearly two years have passed since M. Jullien quitted England to win fresh laurels in America, and that period has certainly served to increase his energy, and strengthen those powers of gesticulation for which he has long been notorious ... but we must protest strongly against the introduction of Signor Robbio as a solo violinist, for he is a mere pretender, utterly beneath criticism, and well deserved to be hissed out of the orchestra ...

[News], Liverpool Mercury (16 January 1855), 4

The numerous amateurs of good music will no doubt learn with satisfaction the arrival in this town of the favourite performer on the violin Signor Agostino Robbio. This excellent artiste, after having attracted the most enthusiastic ovations in all the capitals of Europe and America, has lately met the greatest applause, on his appearance at Mons. Jullien's concerts in Drury-lane. Signor Robbio, pupil of the late Signor Paganini, is known to be initiated into those extraordinary means with which that wonderful genius produced such magic effects. There is no doubt but our dilettanti will gladly attend the concerts which, at the earnest request of his friends, Signor Robbio intends to give in Liverpool.

"ISLE OF FRANCE", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 March 1860), 5

[News], The Argus (20 October 1862), 5

A musical celebrity has recently arrived in this Colony, on a professional visit, whose credentials are of the highest order. We refer to Signor Robbio, a violinist, who may be remembered as having been introduced to a London audience by Mr. Harris, at the Royal Italian Opera, in 1851 [recte 1854]). A number of the Gazzetta di Genova, for March, 1838, is lying before us, in which Signor Robbio's successful début at the Genoese Academy is recorded; and it is added that he was the favourite pupil of Paganini, by whom his musical genius was regarded with so much approbation that the maestro presented young Robbio with a medal, and, what was of still greater value, devised him the master's own violin. Since then, Signor Robbio has visited every part of the civilized world, and seems to have been everywhere hailed as a great artiste ...

"SIGNOR ROBBIO'S CONCERT", The Argus (29 November 1862), 5

"SIGNOR ROBBIO'S CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 December 1862), 13

"MUSIC AND THE DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1863), 9

... Coming to events of a more pretentious character, we have to note in the first place a concert given jointly by Messrs. Boulanger and Robbio. This took place in the Masonic Hall on the evening of the 10th instant, in the presence of a very numerous and fashionable audience. The performance commenced with a grand trio by Beethoven in C minor (for piano, violin, and violon cello), a beautiful and elaborate composition in which the united talent of M. Boulanger on the piano-forte, Signor Robbio on the violin, and Mr. Edward Deane on the violoncello, was made conspicuous, and hailed with well deserved applause ... The concert terminated with the "Valse Diabolique", by Signor Robbio, the composition [his own] being most effectively rendered. ... At the present time, Signor Robbio is fulfilling a short engagement at the Lyceum Theatre, the management of that establishment having conceived the idea that they would be doing good service by familiarising the humbler classes with performances at once so refined and elevating as those which have placed the name of Robbio so high upon the scroll of distinguished musicians."

"NEW SOUTH WALES", The Cornwall Chronicle (1 April 1863), 5

"EPISODES OF A VOYAGE ROUND THE WORLD BY MARQUIS CHISHOLM", Greenock Advertiser [Scotland] (11 July 1868), 1

... A few days after arriving in Nagasaki, I gave a return concert (where I was again joined by Signor Robbio, who bad been the guest of the Russian admiral during my absence at Yokohama), and was somewhat sorry to perceive that may audience were all armed with swords and pistols. In this disturbed state of the community, I resolved to spend the winter in China ...

"MUSIC", Pall Mall Gazette (20 June 1884), 3-4

... By the way, we [4] hear that Signor Robbio, once a favourite violinist, now, through money losses (as usual) is again before the public, and has come to London. He is seventy years old. Few people are likely to remember one of the most poetic artists of his day, who received the usual quantity of snuff-boxes and diamond pins from crowned heads - "long, long, ago." ...

[News, Morning Post [London] (29 February 1896), 5

Chevalier Agostino Robbio, a violinist who in his youth was a pupil of Paganini, and whose executive skill is still very great, was riven a benefit concert at 34, Grosvenor-square, yesterday afternoon, by kind permission of Mr. and Mrs. Suthers. The tasteful singing of Señor Guetary and the excellent violoncello playing of Señor Rubio were much appreciated. Madame Grimaldi performed some piano solos, and Miss Anna Roeckner contributed some songs.

Bibliography and resources:

"NIZZA", Il Pirata (Giornale di letteratura, belle arti ... ) 4/48 (14 December 1838), 197

Francesco Regli, Storia del violino in Piemente (Torino: Enrico Dalmazzo, 1863), 192

Un fiore ad Agostino Robbio, allievo dell'Istituto musicale di Genova. Fornito di molta facilità e di flessibile ingegno, intraprese di buon'ora la carriera dei Concerti. Comò luminose vittorie nella Spagna, ed ora miete allori in America.


Church musician, music copyist

Active Sydney, NSW, ? 1824/25


In the government's disbursements (reported in October 1825), the accounts for St. Philip's Church included a payment to "Mr . Roberts, for ditto [conducting psalmody on Sunday mornings] and writing music, from 8th Sept. to 7 Dec. [? 1824/25]". Also to Robert Howe the Government printer, a payment for "10 quires of medium paper for music, 50s. from 25th Dec. 1823, to 13th June, 1824."


"DISBURSEMENTS. ECCLESIASTICAL ESTABLISHMENT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (3 October 1825), 1

ROBERTS, Mr. (? = Henry ROBERTS below)


Active Bathurst, NSW, 1846


[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 November 1846), 3

On Monday evening, another party was invited by Mr. Lawson to meet his Excellency [Fitzroy], which was numerously attended; after which a ball Dancing was kept up until a late hour-the party did not separate until four A.M. The music was provided by Mr. Roberts, of the town of Bathurst, and did him much credit, and gave general satisfaction.

"NEWS FROM THE INTERIOR. BATHURST", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 August 1847), 3 

RELIEF OF THE DISTRESSED IRISH AND SCOTCH.- We are glad to find that a stir has at length been made to get up a public meeting ... Independent of the above meeting, other means are in contemplation for adding to the fund - active measures are taking to get up a ball, many of the publicans and confectioners having offered to provide refreshments. Mr. Popelara has promised to give the use of his long room, and Mr. Roberts, music and dancing master, has volunteered to attend gratuitously with his band. The whole proceeds of such tickets as may be sold will be contributed to the fund; a concert is also on the tapis with the same object.

? "DANCING", Bathurst Advocate (30 June 1849), 2


Musician (pupil of Hullah), bandmaster

Died Maitland, NSW, 21 February 1898, aged 60


"Death of Mr. A. R. Roberts", The Maitland Daily Mercury (22 February 1898), 2

... The deceased gentleman, who was 60 years of age last May, was an old colonist. Born in Maidstone, Kent, England, he was educated at Chelsea College, London, where he was fortunate in receiving personal instruction in mathematics from the noted Dr. Colenso, and in music from Hullah. Passing a competitive examination required by the New Zealand Government, he landed in that colony in 1857. After some three years of teaching in New Zealand, Mr. Roberts came over to New South Wales in 1861, and for 34 years he was connected with the Education Department, in the capacity of head master at various schools on the South Coast, in New England, and in this district. While stationed at Scone, Mr. Roberts was correspondent for the Mercury. ... He was very fond of music, and was a good performer on different instruments. He was for some time an organist in England, and he initiated a band in Inverell and in Walcha, and personally instructed the members.

"Death of Mr. A. R. Roberts", The Maitland Weekly Mercury (26 February 1898), 10



Born Brisbane, QLD, 1866
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1878
Died Rose Bay, NSW, March 1944


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 December 1878), 2

"AMUSEMENTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 December 1878), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (13 December 1882), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 November 1883), 2

"MUSICIAN OF FORMER DAYS DEAD", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 March 1944), 12

Mrs. Annie O'Connor, a prominent musician in the Sydney of the 1880's, has died at her Rose Bay home. Born in Brisbane 78 years ago, she was the daughter of William Roberts, manager of Christopher Newton's warehouse, and of Asenath Elworthy, niece of George Elworthy, of Sydney, and granddaughter of Major-General Elworthy, of Exeter, England. She studied the piano under Charles Packer and Sydney Moss, and showed such marked promise that at the early age of nine she played at a concert given by Madame Ilma Di Murska. Later she was among those who played at the Garden Palace Exhibition in 1879. Mrs. O'Connor is survived by a son and two daughters.

ROBERTS, Edith Annie

Amateur composer, pianist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1867


She was a daughter of William George Roberts (d.1876) and his wife Margaret (d.1901), proprietors of a Ladies Institute in Hotham Street East Melbourne, who published her The royal Galatea waltz (by "a young [ ] of seventeen"), which first appeared in November 1867, celebrating the visit of prince Alfred, the duke of Edinburgh. It went into several editions (including a fourth) and, considerably outlasting the Galatea's stay, by February 1869, a sixth.


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 December 1859), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (31 October 1867), 3

[News], The Argus (1 November 1867), 4

A waltz, entitled "The Royal Galatea Waltz," has been published for the composer, Miss Edith Annie Roberts, a young lady of Melbourne. It was written in honour of the Duke of Edinburgh, under whose grandfather (the Duke of Kent) the composer's father served as surgeon in the 1st Regiment, or "Royal Scots". On this occasion we shall only acknowledge receipt of the publication.

[News], The Argus (4 November 1867), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (30 January 1868), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 February 1869), 4s

[News], The Argus (11 March 1869), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 November 1870), 8

"DEATHS", The Argus (1 July 1901), 1


Leader of the A.Y.M.S. Orchestra

Active Adelaide, SA, early 1880s


"ROYAL COLLEGE OF MUSIC. TO THE EDITOR", The South Australian Advertiser (18 August 1882), 7

Sir, In your columns of yesterday you drew attention to the meeting which is called by His Worship the Mayor for the purpose of discussing on Friday evening the mode of dealing with the communication received from His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales re the establishment of a Royal College of Music. As an Australian born, a member of the musical profession, and the descendant of a pupil of the late distinguished musician Mr. G. F. Anderson, (Her Majesty's private bandmaster), I take a deep interest in the cause. In this letter it will be impossible for me to enlarge upon the subject as I should like to do, but I desire to point out, and it is my most earnest wish that we, as Australians, should make it a national matter, and take the subject in hand unitedly. It is possible (although I hope it may never occur) we may be called upon to shoulder arms in our own defence and show our loyalty to our Queen and the Crown, which we shall undoubtedly do; but in this matter we can distinguish ourselves as a nation, and show that we are possessed of a sentiment and a desire to promulgate the art of music. It has always been my wish that we should establish a national college of music in Australia, but I think the time has not yet arrived for doing so. We have many distinguished professors of the divine art in the colonies, but none sufficiently qualified to be placed in the premier position. Those who have established themselves in the colonies have done good service, but they are wanting in the abilities of high class instructors. As Australians we are noted for possessing an extraordinary ability for appreciating musical talent. Madame Anna Bishop and Madame A. Goddard have both told me that in no part of the world did they ever meet with such severe and sincere critics as in Australia. We have bad amongst us most of the world's celebrities as vocalists and instrumentalist, but when we think of the humble origin of many of the stars of great brilliancy, undoubtedly there is a great future for Australia, and I think by uniting in this matter we shall be able to distinguish ourselves, and show that our heart is in the cause. I may state, as far as this city is concerned, that the A.Y.M.S. Orchestra will assist in any movement that may be approved of by the committee. - I am, &c., GEO. ROBERTS, Leader of the A.Y.M.S. Orchestra.

"FANCY DRESS REUNION", The South Australian Advertiser (14 December 1882), 5


Dancing master, violinist, cellist

Born England, c.1816
Married Ellen Munton STANBROUGH (1811-1890), ? England, ?
Arrived Australia, ? by 1849
Died Melbourne, VIC, 26 July 1898, aged 82 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROBERTS, Mr. (junior)

Violinist, cellist

ROBERTS, The Misses

Teachers of dancing


? "DANCING", Bathurst Advocate (30 June 1849), 2

Mr. Roberts, professor of the polite accomplishment of dancing, has been practising the duties of his profession in this town and district for a considerable length of time. He has instructed nearly 200 young people in his art, and has, we understand, given great satisfaction to his employers. We regret, that owing to the social peculiarities of Bathurst, he has not met, and is not meeting, that degree of support which is necessary to enable him to follow his profession. As he is a young man deserving encouragement, and fully competent to discharge the duties of his office, we think the public ought to give him support. And considering that he has a wife and family, we would strongly recommend a public ball to be got up for his benefit, in which undertaking we will render him all the assistance our means will afford

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (10 April 1850), 230

DANCING. THE Dancing Classes will be resumed at York House Establishment, under the direction of MR. ROBERTS, Professor of Dancing, late of Sydney, who has brought high recommendations. Further particulars will be announced, and Mr. Roberts will have the honor of waiting personally on the principal families, to request their patronage. April 9.

"Mr. Roberts' Advertisement", The Cornwall Chronicle (10 April 1850), 229

We recommend attention to the advertisement of Mr. Roberts, Professor of Dancing whose recent arrival from Europe secures competent tuition in the most fashionable dances. Local references is offered by Mr. Roberts, who has connections in Launceston.

[Notice of insolvency], The Cornwall Chronicle (26 November 1851), 757

"ASSAULT", The Cornwall Chronicle (11 February 1857), 4

"NEW INSOLVENTS DURING THE MONTH", Launceston Examiner (11 June 1859), 2

"TOWN TALK AND TABLE CHAT", The Cornwall Chronicle (18 August 1860), 4

"ASSAULT CASE", The Cornwall Chronicle (15 October 1862), 5

"MUNICIPAL COUNCIL", Launceston Examiner (18 January 1866), 2

"DESTRUCTIVE FIRE", The Cornwall Chronicle (9 May 1866), 5

"WESTBURY", The Cornwall Chronicle (3 March 1869), 3

A vocal and instrumental concert, advertised by Messrs. Linly Norman, J. H. Melvyn, and Bent - engaged, I understand, by Mr. Roberts, dancing master, Launceston - took place in the Public Library here on Friday evening last. The audience, although limited, was a very considerate one. The programme was not so attractive as I should have expected, complaints being very general of the preponderance of instrumental music. The vocal pieces by Messrs. J. H. Melvyn and Bent were rendered in a style that we seldom have an opportunity of hearing, and elicited the loudest demonstrations of approval. The orchestra consisted of Messrs. Linly Norman, J. H. Melvyn, Biggs, Roberts, senior, and Roberts, junior. The overtures and symphonies were very fairly performed, considering the few players. A violin and pianoforte duet, by Messrs. Norman and Roberts, jun., and trio, violin, violoncello, and pianoforte, by Messrs. Roberts, sen., Roberts, jun. and Linly Norman, were most imperfectly rendered, causing considerable surprise. Without wishing in any way to detract from the merits of the Messrs. Roberts, I must be pardoned for remarking that although their performance on the violin may be all that is required for the purposes of their business as proprietors of a dancing saloon, it falls far short of what is actually necessary in the successful rendering of such pieces as the audience in the Public Library were inflicted with on Friday evening. The very brilliant execution of Mr. Linly Normam, however, succeeded admirably in carrying through what must otherwise have been an utter failure.

"Deaths", The Argus (6 September 1890), 1 

ROBERTS. - On the 1st inst., at 41 Dundas-place, Albert-park, Ellen Munton, beloved wife of Henry Roberts, teacher of dancing, aged 78, a colonist of 52 years. "She did what she could." Burial service 3rd September at All Saints' Church, St. Kilda.

"DEATHS", The Argus (28 July 1898), 1

ROBERTS. - On the 26th July, at West Melbourne, Henry Roberts, of 195 Collins-street (teacher of dancing and calisthenics, 45 years in Australia), aged 82 years, the dearly beloved father of William Henry and Caroline Elizabeth Roberts.

"CURRENT TOPICS. Obituary", Launceston Examiner (28 July 1898), 4

A private cable was received in the city yesterday announcing the death of Mr. Henry Roberts in Melbourne. Deceased, who was over 80 years of age, was a well-known dancing master, and was a resident of Launceston for upwards of a quarter of a century. About 30 years ago he occupied premises close to the establishment of Messrs. Ditcham and Button, in York-street. Mr. Roberts was a native of England, but he was educated in France for the musical profession.

Published works:

Roberts' manual of fashionable dancing and vade mecum for the ball-room: containing a review and full description of all the modern dances, &c.

(Melbourne: G. Robertson, 1875) 

[second edition] (Melbourne: G. Robertson, 1876) 

[third edition] (Melbourne: G. Robertson, 1876) 

ROBERTS, Oliver D.

Bandmaster, cornet player

Active VIC, 1880s


[News], Warragul Guardian (23 October 1888), 3

Some months ago we referred to the fact that a town like Warragul had not a brass band to number as one of its institutions, and we are now glad to notify that Mr. Symonds has informed us that the members y of the local branch of the M. U. Oddfellows have determined to establish a band of that description, and have secured the services of Mr. Oliver D. Roberts as bandmaster. Mr. Roberts has very good credentials as a e musician, and has filled similar positions I before, his last appointment, which he held for two years, being master of the Numurkah brass band.

"THE WARRAGUL AMATEUR MINSTRELS, AT NEERIM", Warragul Guardian (26 April 1889), 3

"BERRIGAN", Albury Banner (27 August 1897), 17


Drummer (2-14th Regiment)

Active Adelaide, SA, 1869


"LAW COURTS", The South Australian Advertiser (20 May 1869), 3


Orchestral musician, member of theatrical band

Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 February 1842), 3 

Royal Victoria Theatre. FIRST NIGHT OF THE SEASON . . . THE ORCHESTRAL DEPARTMENT WILL CONSIST OF MR. S.W. WALLACE, LEADER, Mr. Deane, Master Deane, Mr. Leggatt, Mr. Wallace, Senr., Mr. Walton, Mr. Portbury, Mr. Pappin, Mr. Sippe, Mr. Robertson, Master Strong, Mr. Boyle, &c, &c. . . .

ROBINS, William

Bandsman (Band of the 96th Regiment), serpent player

Died Launceston, TAS, 13 January 1867

See also Band of the 96th Regiment



"DEATHS", Launceston Examiner (14 January 1867), 2


[William Walker] ... Has there been much advance made in band instruments since then? "Yes, undoubtedly. The bass instrument called the serpent was then very much in vogue. Old Mr. Robins, who came out with the band of the 99th [recte 96th] Regiment, played one for years, and a Mr. Allen, who was a fellow-bandsman in the 99th [96th], also performed on the same instrument.

"Worlds Oldest Band Celebrates Its Centenary", Examiner (25 August 1945), 11 

[St. Joseph's Band] ... The first bandmaster was the late Mr. John Agnew, of the 96th Regiment, and the original members were: Messrs. Charles Galvin, John McKenzie, William Mainsbridge, William Robins, Andrew Skafe, Arthur McIver, Francis Mclver, Morgan O' Meara, William O'Meara, David O'Keefe, Thomas Keogh, Thomas Leary, John Leary, John Murphy, and Bernard Lynch. The first president was the late Rev. Dean Thomas Butler. Subsequently Mr. Joseph Galvin, John Galvin, Thomas J. Doolan, John L. Doolan, James Doolan, and Michael Doolan became members of the band.



Active Sydney, NSW, 1843


[Advertisement], The Australian (11 January 1843), 3

ROBINSON, Charles E.

Amateur musician, composer

Active Sydney, NSW, 1860s


Robinson's song No jewell'd beauty is my love (words: Gerald Massey; "Ballad set to music and published expressly in aid of the Building Fund of the Hunter's High School, June 3rd, 1861") was published in Sydney by W. J. Johnson in 1861.

At least two other musical works by him are documented, a Christmas hymn ("simple arrangement") in 1864, and a Bridal ode ("composed and arranged as a quartette"; words and music: C. E. Robinson), sung by the principals of the Lyster Opera Company after their performance of Maritana on 11 June 1863, to mark the marriage of HRH Prince of Wales, the words only of which survive. Also on that program were Anthony Reiff's The Poet Laureate's welcome to Alexandra, and Henry Marsh's Australia's wedding march.


"PARRAMATTA", Empire (31 May 1861), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (11 June 1863), 1

"COMMEMORATION ODE", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 June 1863), 4

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 November 1864), 5


Music copyist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1842 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"I W. Robinson", or perhaps "T. W. Robinson", who drew the music for the 1842 first edition of Isaac Nathan's Koorinda braia is not yet positively identifiable. Some connection may be surmised either with the engraver Thomas Robinson (below) or Thomas Wilkie Robinson (below).


Koorinda Braia, an Aboriginal native song, put into rhythm, harmonised, and inscribed to Mrs. E. Deas Thomson, by I. Nathan (Sydney: [n.p.], 1842) 

Page 4, beneath bottom staff, has "I. W. Robinson. Script." [or "J. W. ..."; or perhaps "T. W. ..."]


Choral singer (pupil of F. A. Packer)

Active Sydney, NSW, 1842


"MARRIAGE", The Mercury (30 December 1873), 1

"DIAMOND WEDDING ... Governor's Wife as Sunday School Teacher", Examiner (23 December 1933), 9

She was born at Hobart in January, 1851, and was educated at Beauland House, Collins-street, when Mrs. Searle was head mistress. She joined the Church of England old St. David's Sunday School at the age of six years, when Lady Gore Brown, the wife of the Governor of Tasmania, was the teacher. At the age of twelve years Mrs. Robinson became a member of the church choir, when Mr. F. A. Packer was the organist and her music teacher. At the age of fourteen years she sang her first anthem in the church. When she married she joined the Union Chapel with her husband, and afterwards joined the choir, Mr. A. J. Dentith being the organist. She became the leader of the choir, and continued so for 25 years. She sang at the opening of the new Town Hall at Hobart. When H.M.S. Galatea arrived with the Duke of Edinburgh on board there was a grand concert given in his honour, at which Miss Sarah Sherwin, Mrs. Propsting, Mrs. A. W. Haume, and Mrs. Robinson sang the principal parts. Mr. Packer held the concerts in aid of the organ fund at Del Sartes Rooms (now called the Tasmanian Hall), which was purchased by Mr. John Davies, sen., and committee. For some years Mrs. Robinson assisted Mr. Arnold at the Bethel on Sunday afternoons, and when the English traders were in port there was a good attendance. She also assisted by singing on several occasions at concerts in St. Peter's Hall, Lower Collins-street, in aid of St. Mary's Cathedral, Mr. McCann, sen., being conductor.

"DEATHS", The Mercury (21 April 1944), 8



Died Parramatta, NSW, 20 November 1826, aged 70


"DIED", The Australian (25 November 1826), 2

At Parramatta, on Monday the 20th November, aged 70, Michael Robinson, a fiddler. - An Inquest was held on the 21st instant. Verdict, died by the visitation of God. Michael was a free man, and had neither friends nor money; and it was not until Thursday that his remains were interred. Charity was at its lowest ebb, and the common-wealth did not take the expense upon itself. Application was made to the Rev. Samuel Marsden, he referred the applicants to the Police Magistrate, Dr. Harris, who gave no orders. Mr. Aird, the Superintendent, said he could not order a coffin. The Clergyman at last paid for one; and all that was left of the poor object, was enclosed in it, and removed from the house where he had died.


Jordan 2012, 202

ROBINSON, Michael Massey

Singer, songwriter, convict (first Australian Harmonist)

Born England, 1744
Arrived Sydney, NSW, May 1798 (convict per Barwell)
Died Sydney, NSW, 22 December 1826, aged 92 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE public tag)

Michael Massey Robinson (c.1817, Edward Close)

Image: Edward Charles Close, "Mich[ae]l Robinson" "The Poet Laureat", sketchbook from c.1817, Sydney, State Library of New South Wales (SAFE / PXA 1187) (DIGITISED)


Robinson, a convict, was unofficial colonial bard from the early 1810s onwards. He recited, rather than sang, his annual odes for the King's and Queen's birthdays, as is made clear in the report (1816-01-20) below). Their texts were regularly reprinted in the press, as were the words of original songs that he sang on other semi-public occasions. Specifically for anniversary dinners (26 January) in 1820 he produced "Alive to the strain that gay fancy inspires",  and in 1822 (the dinner postponed until the 31 January, the former governor Lachlan Macquarie's birthday) his song was "Philosophers say, and experience declares".

At the Anniversary Dinner in January 1825, Robinson sang his song, "The annals of London's emporium have told", to the tune of Derry Down (there was another song, by the unidentified "Avec Franchase ... in his best style ... the company ... indebted to him for a sample also of his vocal powers"). At a dinner for the outgoing governor, Thomas Brisbane, in November 1825, "many excellent songs" were given, one Song "in particular, composed and sung by that old son of the Muses, Mr. Michael Robinson":

The trophies of freedom transcendent have shone,
In graceful reflections from Britain's bright throne:
And the star she diffus'd-with munificent smile,
Has glimmer'd at last on Australia's Isle ...

According to his obituary in the Gazette: "Mr. Robinson, and not Mr. Justice Field, was the 'first Austral Harmonist'."


"THE KING AGAINST MICHAEL ROBINSON", Cases in crown law: determined by the twelve judges, by the Court ... Volume 2 (London: J. Butterworth and Son, &c., 1815), 749

"Sydney", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 January 1816), 2

... At one o'clock His Majesty's armed brig Emu fired a Royal Salute; and His EXCELLENCY held a Levee at Government House, and received the Congratulations of the Civil and Military Officers, and other Gentlemen of the Colony. The LAUREAT BARD (for so we may venture to call him, from the frequency of his tributes on such occasions) presented his offering of an Ode, which, at the instance of His EXCELLENCY, he recited in an emphatic and appropriate style; the distinguished approbation of those who had the satisfaction to hear it, will best convey the high opinion entertained of the merits of this production.

"ODE", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 January 1816), 2

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (5 February 1820), 3

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (8 February 1822), 3

"SONG FOR THE COMMEMORATION DINNER", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (5 February 1824), 2

"ANNIVERSARY MEETING", The Australian (3 February 1825), 3

"PUBLIC DINNER TO HIS EXCELLENCY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (10 November 1825), 3

"Sydney Intelligence", Colonial Times (2 December 1825), 4

"ANNIVERSARY DINNER. SONG BY MR. M. ROBINSON", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (1 February 1826), 3

"DEATH", The Australian (23 December 1826), 2

"Death", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 December 1826), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Donovan Clarke, "Robinson, Michael Massey (1744-1826)", Australian dictionary of biography 2 (1967)


Engraver, lithographer

Born Huddersfield, England, c. 1817
Arrived Sydney, NSW, ? (free per Egyptian)
Active Sydney, NSW, c. 1842 to January 1844
Active Norfolk Island, 1844-47
Active VDL (TAS), 1847-55
Imprisoned NSW, 1855-57
Active TAS, 1857 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)

See also above I. W. Robinson


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 September 1842), 3 

... Mr. Robinson, Engraver, Pitt-street, Sydney ...

"FORGED NOTES", The Weekly Register of Politics, Facts and General Literature (30 September 1843), 140 

On Monday evening, a little boy named Charles McCutchin, aged about nine years, entered Grays, Light-house Tavern, corner of Bathurst and Suesex-streets, with a bottle for a gill of rum, in payment of which he tendered a one pound note of the Bank of New South Wales, received the change, and left the premises. Mr. Gray, on the following day paid the note into the Bank, when it was pronounced to be a forgery ... The note is executed with a pen, and requires a close inspection to distinguish it from the genuine document. It is numbered 90,039. Mr. Pearce, the acting Chief Constable, succeeded on Thursday evening in securing an engraver named Thomas Robinson, who has since been identified by the boy McClutchin [sic] as the man who sent him ...

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 August 1843), 3 

... Mr. Thomas Robinson, Engraver and Copperplate Printer, Park-street, next door to Pettit's Hotel, Sydney ...

Thomas Robinson, convict record, 1847; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1430298; CON37/1/3 Page 967$init=CON37-1-3p366 

"TASMANIA . . . STABBING", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 July 1855), 3 

One of those cowardly instances of ferocity with which, we regret to feel compelled to state, the name of Englishmen has of late years been too frequently associated, occurred on the evening of Thursday last, in Elizabeth-street. The victim in this case is William Graham, lately a constable in the district of Port Cygnet; the perpetrator, Mr. T. E. Robinson, an engraver, living near the Rock Hotel, in the above locality. Some quarrel appeared to have occurred between Robinson and his wife, with which Graham attempted to interfere, and was, consequently stabbed with a bowie-knife in two places, in the leg and thigh ...

Thomas Robinson, convict record, 1855; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1430284; CON37/1/8 Page 2763$init=CON37-1-8p360 

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Mercury (7 September 1856), 2 

Bibliography and references:

"Thomas E. Robinson", Design & Art Australia Online (DAAO) 

ROBINSON, Thomas Wilkie (T. W. ROBINSON)

Schoolmaster, lecturer on music

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1837 (per Portland, from Britain)
Active Maitland, NSW, by 1850s
Departed NSW, 1861 (for Scotland)
Died Edinburgh, Scotland, 20 April 1875 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also above I. W. Robinson

ROBINSON, William Charles (Rev. W. C. ROBINSON)

Composer, hymn writer, Congregational pastor

Born c. 1820
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, by November 1857
Active Hobart, TAS, 1863-82
Died Ashfield, Sydney, NSW, 2 July 1904, aged 84


Robinson was born in London, trained at Hackney Congregational College, and entered the Independent ministry in 1845. After serving his first pastorate near Bedford, his health broke down, and, in consequence, in 1857 he sailed for Victoria, where in November he became pastor at Williamstown.

The Rev. W. C. Robinson first visited Hobart in November 1862 and returned in January to become pastor of the Brisbane Street Congregational Church, where he remained until 1882.

He was both a hymn writer and composer. In August 1863, he advertised that at a special Sunday school service "Hymns, composed for the occasion, will be sung", and at a missionary farewell in 1866, it was reported: "Another hymn composed and printed for the occasion, read by the Rev. W. C. Robinson, was then sung". His Anthem: Hundredth psalm, published by J. Walch and Sons in Hobart in March 1864, had been "Composed for the Bible and singing class meeting at Brisbane Street Chapel, Hobarton by the Rev. W. C. Robinson, and presented to the members of the class at their social meeting, January 1864".

His publisher, James Walch, was also a deacon in Robinson's congregation.


"OPENING OF THE INDEPENDENT CHURCH, WILLIAMSTOWN", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 November 1857), 5

"HOBART TOWN AND THE SOUTH", Launceston Examiner (8 November 1862), 4


[Advertisement], The Mercury (8 August 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Mercury (11 March 1864), 1

"SACRED MUSIC", The Mercury (11 March 1864), 2


"OUR PREACHERS. REV. W. C. ROBINSON", The Mercury (22 April 1882), 3

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 July 1904), 6

"OBITUARY", The Mercury (28 July 1904), 5

"CONGREGATIONAL UNION OF TASMANIA", The Mercury (8 March 1905), 7

Bibliography and resources:

ROBINSON, William Cleaver Francis (W. C. F. ROBINSON; Sir William ROBINSON)

Composer, pianist, colonial governor

Born, Rosmead, Westmeath, Ireland, 13 January 1834
Governor Western Australia (1), January 1875-September 1877
Governor Western Australia (2), from April 1880
Governor South Australia, from February 1883
Acting Governor of Victoria, March-November 1889
Governor Western Australia (3), October 1890-March 1895
Died London, England, 2 May 1897 (NLA persistent identifier)



His comic opera Predatoros played in Melbourne in November 1894. At the time of his death he was working on a new opera The nut-brown maid, which was to have been staged in Melbourne.

According to his obituary:

Sir William Robinson was a musician of some eminence, and he composed a number of popular songs, among which the best known are Remember Me No More, I Love Thee So, Imperfectus, Severed, and Thou Art My Soul.


"PREADTOROS, OR THE BRIGAND'S BRIDE", The Argus (12 July 1894), 6

"PREDATOROS IN MELBOURNE", The West Australian (14 November 1894), 5

"THE WEST AUSTRALIAN OPERA", The West Australian (1 January 1895), 6

"SIR W. F. C. ROBINSON AT HOME", The West Australian (23 February 1897), 10

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 March 1897), 4

"THE LATE SIR WILLIAM ROBINSON. A BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH", South Australian Register (4 May 1897), 5

"DEATH OF SIR WILLIAM ROBINSON", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 May 1897), 5

Other works:

A garland of roses (words from the German). in The Illustrated Australian News and Musical Times (2 September 1889), 12-13

Dear faded flower (song) (Sydney: W.H. Paling & Co., [18-?]) 

Palace of dreams (new song; words: J. P. Douglas) (London: Wickins & Co.; Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., [189-?]) 

If I only knew (words: Mary L. Pendered) (Melbourne: W.H. Glen, [18--?]) 

Unfurl the flag (patriotic song; words: Francis Hart) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen, [18-?]) 

Predatoros, or, The brigand's bride [libretto only] (serio-comic romantic opera, in two acts written by Francis Hart; composed by Sir W. C. F. Robinson) [Melbourne, November 1894] 

Bibliography and resources:

F. K. Crowley, "Robinson, Sir William Cleaver Francis (1834-1897)", Australian dictionary of biography 6 (1976)



Active Sydney, NSW, 1853


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 September 1853), 5 

ROYAL HOTEL. MR. SINCLAIR has the honor to announce that he intends giving a Vocal and Instrumental Concert, at the above Hotel, on THURSDAY, September 8th, when he will be assisted by the following artistes: Mrs. St. John Adcock, Miss Flora Harris, Mr. Roby, Mr. Ford, and Herr Hoffman. A. F. FORD, Agent.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 September 1853), 1 

ROYAL HOTEL. GRAND CONCERT. THIS EVENING, Monday, September 12th, 1853.
Miss Flora Harris, Mr. Sinclair (from the London and Provincial Theatres, his first appearance in this colony.) Mr. John Howson, Mr. Roby, Mr. A. Ford, and Mr. Ferdinand Rosenstein, the celebrated Pianist ... Programme: - PART I ... Ballad - In Happy Moments - Wallace - Mr. Roby ... PART II ... Pestal - Mr. Roby ...

ROCHLITZ, Julius Albert (Bela; J. A. RICHLITZ; von ROCHLITZ)

Composer, music teacher, photographer, "daguerrean artist"

Born Rozsnyo, Hungary, 1824
Active Victoria, 1853-63
Active London, England, 1870 Died Budapest, 1886 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Rochlitz first advertised his "Daguerreotype Rooms" at Geelong in late October 1853. He was on the Ballarat diggings by early 1855, and by October 1856 was at Beechworth, where he settled for the remainder of his time in the colony. At Beechworth in 1861, Rochlitz sold off photographic equipment and music books, possibly to fund more lucrative horticultural ventures, only advertising his musical services again in 1863, perhaps as a last restort. From early 1860 his brother Dr. Koloman von Rochlitz (also Coloman), a surgeon and medical practitioner, was in Melbourne and Geelong.

In 1866-67, through the presses of Schott and Co. in London, Julius Albert von Rochlitz ("late Captain Hungarian General Staff") published The Geelong-Melbourne Railway polka, "composed and dedicated to his friends in Australia".


[Advertisement], Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (26 October 1853), 2 

"GENERAL SESSIONS", The Argus (26 April 1855), 6

"SHOCKING OCCURRENCE AT THE STAR HOTEL", The Argus (22 November 1856), 5

"MISS [Octavia] HAMILTON'S BENEFIT", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (11 February 1857), 2 

The complimentary benefit to Miss Hamilton was attended last night by a very numerous audience. Notwithstanding the state of the weather, and the miserable condition of our roads, a very large portion of Messrs Mackay, Miller and Mackay's store, which was set apart for seats, was inconveniently crowded, while a number of gentlemen found standing and lounging room round the counters which Mr. Winter had converted into temporary bars. Miss Hamilton's singing was warmly applauded, and vociferously encored. The several ballads with which she delighted the audience were well and clearly rendered. Mr. Coulon and Mr. Pierce lent efficient aid in the vocal, and Mr Rochlitz kindly assisted in the instrumental part of the programme. We understand that from Beechworth this party intend visiting Albury. We trust that they may be more successful there than they have been in Beechworth.

[Advertisement], Ovens and Murray Advertiser (21 April 1863), 3 

TUITION, on the PIANO - Six Guineas per Quarter, of 24 Lessons. J. A. ROCHLITZ.

[Advertisement], Islington Gazette [London] (16 April 1867), 4

"Evening Bouquet" and "Melbourne-Geelong Railway" Polkas, to be had, free by post each for 15 stamps, of the author, Mr. Rochlitz, 19, John-street, Penton-street, N.

Copy of the Evening bouquet polka at British Library.

[Advertisement], Islington Gazette [London] (27 August 1867), 1

Professor J. A. Rochlitz, a naturalised British subject, Protestant Non-Republican, is prepared to show the highest College Testimonial for Theological, Political, and Law Sciences, Mental and Moral Philosophy, Natural Sciences, Mathematics, Mechanics, Technology, Survey and Perspective, Freehand and Linear Drawing (for civil and military engineers, architects, surveyors, mechanics, decorators), landscape and figures, for the theory, practice, and method of teaching Singing, Piano, and Harmonium (His compositions at Messrs. Mills', Bond-street.) Teaches besides according to his own new method, the Latin, Greek, English, German, Hungarian, French, and Italian Languages. Settled in England permanently establish anti-hierarchic and anti-Jesuitical private College in thorough English Protestant, loyal spirit, as leaven, to bring light and balm against the present Egyptian darkness and its social plagues. He is ready to open for the working (anti-Fenian) classes, high or low. Evening Classes, the easiest terms. Apply personally daily, between 8 and 3, at 19, John-street, Penton-street, N.

[Advertisement], Islington Gazette [London] (22 March 1870), 4

Glee Clubs. - Mr. J. A. Rochlitz, Professor of Singing and Music, has opened three distinct Glee Clubs, for the encouragement of rational and tasteful amusement, for the English, Hungarian, and German residents of the Londoners. His method is excellent, and the expenses reduced below the moderate. For aristocratic parties Mr. R. is ready to open on liberal terms. Separate lady or gentleman choirs, sacred or social. 19, John-street, Penton-street, N.

Bibliography and resources:

"Bela Rochlitz", Design & Art Australia Online (DAAO)

RODEMANN, Maximillian Louis (Lewis RODEMAN; RODEMANN)

Amateur vocalist

Active Adelaide, SA, by 1849
Died Bückeburg, Germany, 22 March 1872 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Bandsman (Burton's Band)

Active Mount Barker, SA, 1856


"MOUNT BARKER", South Australian Register (7 November 1856), 3

Jacob Young, Jacob Düne, Conrad Sander, Heinrich Rodenbout, Carl Leonhardt, Daniel Müller, and Christian Prothenbuck, known as "Burton's Band", appeared to answer the complaint of Mr. Henry Burton, for that they having contracted to serve the said Henry Burton as musicians, and having entered into his service, did neglect and refuse to fulfil the same.


Tenor vocalist, artist, convict

Born Cologne, Germany, 1802
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 6 December 1829 (convict per Sarah, from the Portsmouth hulks, 15 August)
Died Liverpool, NSW, 7 April 1860, aged 56 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


Transported for seven years for stealing a reticule outside the Royal Opera House in in London, Charles Rodius (also regularly "Rhodius") was assigned on arrival to the Department of Public Works, but came to public note in his own right as early as March 1830 with his lithographic portrait of Bungaree.

He was perhaps a member of the Roman Catholic chapel choir. As a solo singer, he appeared in William Vincent Wallace's concert and oratorio in September 1836. At the former, the Australian reported:

The Amateur, Mr. Rhodius, was an object of some attraction, in consequence of his performance on a recent occasion. He sung a pleasing little French song, by Boildeau, in a very plaintive style, without any attempt at display, either of compass of voice or power of execution, and was rapturously encored. He possesses neither of the latter great requisites, but the absence of these qualifications is well supplied by an uncommon sweetness of voice and flexibility of intonation.

In July 1838, Rodius, who suffered from "paralytic" attacks, sold up as he was "leaving Sydney for the benefit of his health". However, in December, his 17-year-old wife, Harriet, died in Sydney.

He was back in Sydney, recovered, in December 1839. In June 1849, at the second exhibition held by the Society for Promoting the Fine Arts in Australia, one of the pictures on show was a likeness of the violinist Joseph Gautrot:

No 171. Portrait of Monsieur Gautrot. Rodius. Property of Mr. Rodius. A free, light, loose sketch, full of artistical talent, and a very striking likeness.

Though his Gautrot portrait is not known to survive, that of another musician, judge Joshua Frey Josephson, does: 


"POLICE. QUEEN-SQUARE", Morning Chronicle [London] (19 February 1829), 3

A young foreigner, dressed in the most fashionable style, who said his name was CHARLES RODIUS, of 80, Charlotte-street, Portland-place, and who described himself as an artist and teacher of languages, was charged with robbing Lady Laura Meyrick, lady of Colonel Meyrick, of Berkeley-square, of a reticule, containing sundry articles, as she was leaving the King's Theatre, on the previous evening. When Lady Meyrick was quitting the Opera House, with the Colonel, about 12 o'clock, she discovered that she had lost her reticule, and, having suspected the prisoner, who had been following her, the assistance of Handley, an officer, was obtained, and the prisoner was secured, while he was endeavouring to rob another lady. On his person were found the contents of Lady Meyrick's reticule, and he had a penknife in his hand. A ring, a bracelet, and a purse, containing a half-sovereign and six shillings, were also found in his pocket. At his residence several ladies' handkerchiefs, opera-glasses, pieces of purses, and the clasps of reticules, and a purse, containing four sovereigns, were found. The prisoner protested he was innocent, and said the handkerchiefs, &c. had been given him by ladies who had been his pupils. He was committed for trial.

QUEEN-SQUARE - ROBBERY AT DRURY-LANE THEATRE", Morning Post [London] (2 March 1829), 4

Charles Rodius, who stands committed for robbing Lady Ladra Meyrick of her reticule, a s she came out of the King's Theatre, was brought up from Tothill-fields prison, and placed at the bar before G. W. Marriott, Esq., charged with robbing Mrs. Heatley, of Hertford-street, May-fair, of her reticule, as she was coming out of Drury-lane Theatre. Mr. Heatley stated that his wife was so ill that she could not attend, but he could swear to an opera glass and smelling bottle, which were produced by Handley, the officer, who found them at the prisoner's lodgings ...

"MULTUM IN PARVO", Cambridge Chronicle and Journal [England] (10 April 1829), 1

Charles Rodius, a German, was sentenced Saturday at Westminster Sessions to seven years' transportation for stealing from Lady Meyrick a reticule containing various articles ...

[News] Public Ledger and Daily Advertiser [London] (21 August 1829), 3

On Saturday, 200 male convicts were embarked on-board the Sarah transport, Captain Columbine, for New South Wales (100 from the York, and the same number from the Leviathan, convict bulks in Portsmouth harbour), under the charge and superintendence of Mr. Alexander Osborne, surgeon. Among the number, was Charles Rodius, a foreigner, and teacher of languages, who, it will be remembered, was convicted of stealing a lady's reticule at the Opera.

"Domestic Intelligence", The Sydney Monitor (6 March 1830), 2

"THE CONCERT", The Australian (16 September 1836), 2

"MR. WALLACE'S CONCERT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 September 1836), 2

"THE ORATORIO", The Australian (23 September 1836), 2

"The Oratorio", The Sydney Monitor (24 September 1836), 2

"THE ORATORIO", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 September 1836), 2

"THE ORATORIO", The Sydney Herald (26 September 1836), 2

"THE ORATORIO", The Colonist (29 September 1836), 2

"The Concert given by Messrs. Wallace and Deane ...", The Colonist (2 February 1837), 2

"Mr. Wallace's Concert", The Sydney Monitor (2 October 1837), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (2 July 1838), 3

"Death", The Sydney Herald (17 December 1838), 3

[Advertisement], The Colonist (7 December 1839), 3

"MARRIED", The Sydney Herald (2 April 1841), 2

"CERTIFICATES OF FREEDOM", The Australian (17 March 1842), 3


"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 April 1860), 1

Roger Therry, Reminiscences of thirty years' residence in New South Wales and Victoria . . . (London: S. Low, Son, and Co., 1863), 110-11 

A German artist, whose name I withhold, as he lived creditably and married respectably in the colony, served his sentence in the country, and on coming to Sydney enjoyed the general reputation of being an emigrant. He arrived, though in a different ship, on the day of my own arrival in 1829. Both ships had also sailed from England on the same day, about three months and a half previously. I happened to be present at his trial at the Middlesex Sessions, where he had a good chance of a favourable verdict, until he put an injudicious question to the principal witness. The charge against him was for snatching a reticule from Lady Laura Meyrick's hand, on her coming out of the Opera-house. In the reticule was a small scent-bottle, which the witness said she believed was her property. The evidence as to the identity of the stolen bottle, however, was weak, until, unfortunately for himself, the prisoner put a question, inquiring the grounds of her ladyship's belief. The [111] reply was, "Because, as you may see, my husband's crest and the initials of my name are engraved upon the stopper of the bottle." The adage that "when a man is his own counsel he has a fool for a client," could not be more completely illustrated. He was immediately found guilty, and sentenced to transportation for seven years. This person had taught drawing in several high families in England. He cultivated his art in the Colony with some success.

"ART, MUSIC AND THE DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 February 1890), 7

Bibliography and resources:

Jocelyn Gray, Rodius, "Charles (1802-1860)", Australian dictionary of biography 2 (1967)

"Charles Rodius", Design & Art Australia Online (DAAO)

Joanna Gilmour, "Fine and Dandy", Portrait 36

ROECKEL, Armand (jeune)

Pianist, composer

Active Australia, by January 1856, until ? after September 1857 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Roeckel appeard in Sydney accompanying Frank Howson, John Winterbottom and others at the piano in Sydney in January 1856. In July and August he was advertising as teacher of a beginners' music class in Ipswich, Queensland. He returned to Sydney from Brisbane in December 1856, and in Sydney in March 1857, J. R. Clarke advertised:

In preparation, new dance music, by M. Armand Roeckel, viz, a Polka Mazurka, and La Varsoviana (The Favourite Varsoviana) (La Favourite).

Roeckel himself is last documented as being still in Sydney in March 1857; however, on circumstantial evidence he was probably still there in September when Clarke published his Iris varsoviana (named after the ship H.M.S. Iris, then in port). In May 1857 Clarke announced The Australian polka mazurka, which had actually been published previously in London, under the title "Souvenir de Cork" (Clarke later also included it in his Australian musical album for 1863).

In addition to copies of the Australian polka mazurka and Souvenir de Cork, the British Library in London has copies of 5 musical prints by Armand Roeckel. His works are not to be confused with those of Joseph Rekel (J. L. ROECKEL, also ROEKEL), though they were perhaps related.


[Advertisement], Empire (2 January 1856), 1

[Advertisement], The North Australian, Ipswich and General Advertiser (8 July 1856), 1

[Advertisement], The North Australian, Ipswich and General Advertiser (26 August 1856), 1

"THE CHORAL SOCIETY", The North Australian, Ipswich and General Advertiser (25 November 1856), 4

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", Empire (20 December 1856), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 February 1857), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 March 1857), 5

"AN EVENING WITH SHAKSPERE", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 March 1857), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 September 1857), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 September 1857), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 April 1858), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 May 1858), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 July 1859), 10

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1863), 9

Musical works (France):

Graciella! Varsoviana pour piano par Armand Roeckel jeune (Paris: S. Richault, [1854, 1863]); Paris, BnF 

Souvenir de Corck. Polka-mazurka pour le piano par Armand Roeckel jeune (Paris: S. Richault, [1854, 1858, 1863]); Paris, BnF 

Harmonies du Soir, poésies musicales pour piano. Op. 5 (Paris: S. Richault, [1863]); Paris, BnF 


Composer, vocalist

Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1849
Died Gawler, SA, 24 September 1898 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (13 November 1867), 1

"THE LATE MR. C. G. ROEDIGER", South Australian Register (27 September 1898), 3

... Thoroughly straightforward and honourable, he commanded the respect of all who were associated with him. Mr. Roediger possessed musical gifts of no mean order, and when a boy was in great demand as a singer in his native city in Germany ... The remains were conveyed to Buchsfelde, and interred in the burying-ground of St. Paul's, which Church his late brother, the Rev. Julius Roediger, presided over for so many years.

Musical works:

Huzza for Prince Alfred, huzza (words by G. Nott; music by C. G. Roediger) (Adelaide: W. C. Rigby, [1867]) 

ROGERS, Edwin John

Musical memorialist, singer, bell-ringer (mayor of Hobart 1926-27)

Born c.1859
Died Hobart, TAS, 23 February 1951, aged 92

ROGERS, Ada Alice (Miss BELBIN)


Active Hobart, TAS, by 1878
Died Sandy Bay, TAS, 14 December 1945, aged 83


[Advertisement], The Mercury (9 November 1878), 3

"THE ORPHEUS CLUB CONCERT", The Mercury (18 November 1879), 2

"MUSIC AND MUSICIANS Alderman E. J. Rogers A Chat About Old Times", The Mercury (28 August 1929), 5

The young folks of to-day fail to understand that in earlier days people in Hobart enjoyed the same productions as Melbourne and Sydney, because of the direct connection which then existed between the mainland, Tasmania, and New Zealand. We had a weekly service from Melbourne by way of Hobart to New Zealand, and also a steamer the other way about. It followed from this that all the noted operatic and theatrical artists who were travelling between Melbourne and New Zealand called at Hobart, and stayed a week or a fortnight. We had all Lyster's grand operas with magnificent Italian companies ... I first saw [Armes] Beaumont with Alice May in a whole series of English operas, such as "Maritana" and "The Bohemian Girl". Simonsen's Opera Company came here. He was a magnificent violinist and his wife was one of the finest sopranos ever heard on the Australian stage. She was well over 50 years old, and yet would play a girl's part quite charmingly ... Other visiting companies were the Grace Plaister Opera Company, the Emily Melville Opera Company, the German Opera Company, with "Tannhauser" and "Lohengrin", and the Gonsalez Italian Opera Company, the last to come. Amy Sherwin made her first appearance as an operatic singer in a little opera that used to be produced by the late W. Russell, "Zillah". It was given at Delsarte's Rooms, later called the Tasmanian Hall, and now the home of the Royal Yacht Club. She then decided to go on the stage, and joined Lyster's Opera Company ... Lempriere Pringle, the famous bass, is another Tasmanian ... He became Carl Rosa's leading bass, and one of the finest Mephlstopheles on the stage. At one time he sang with the Hobart Orpheus Club ... Turning to players of Instruments, Mr. Rogers recalled such artists as Sir Charles Halle, the pianist, his wife, the violinist [Wilma Neruda], and Levy, the great cornetist, and W. H. Jude, organist and composer. Speaking of Herr Schott, the German musician who came to Hobart to organise the Artillery Garrison Band, Mr. Rogers said that he was one of the finest all-round musicians that ever came to Tasmania. He could pick up the instrument of almost any player and show him what to do. He was the finest oboist in Australia, and conducted the Orchestral Union almost until his dying day. He never had a failure in all that he produced. Outstanding members were the Misses Barclay, Hunt, Foster, Hogg, Henry, Reichenberg (the organist), Mrs. E. J. Rogers, formerly Miss Belbin (the pianist), and Mr. James Dear. Mr. Rogers was one of the founders of the Hobart Orpheus Club, and is now the president, but aside from his work as a singer in this and other bodies and in private life, with the help of Mrs. Rogers, a born musician, he had as manager of the Theatre Royal for 20 years ... 

"GOLDEN WEDDING", Examiner (9 April 1934), 8


"DEATHS", The Mercury (15 December 1945), 21

"MR. E. J. ROGERS' DEATH ENDS LONG CAREER", The Mercury (26 February 1951), 19

"Funeral of Prominent Hobart Businessman", The Mercury (27 February 1951), 8

ROGERS, Emma (= Mrs. George Herbert ROGERS below)

ROGERS, Fannie (Mrs. Ishmael ROGERS)

Music teacher, pianist

Arrived Fremantle, WA, 1887
Died Sutton, Surrey, England, 15 December 1920, aged 79 years


"DEATHS", Western Mail (23 December 1920), 19

"OLD TIME MEMORIES", Western Mail (30 December 1920), 30

The news of the death of Mrs. Ishmael Rogers, which occurred at the family home near London, a few days ago, at the age of 79, will be received with widespread regret by her many friends in Western Australia. Mr. and Mrs. Rogers, with their family, arrived at Fremantle by the steamer Australind's first voyage from London, among their fellow passengers being Mr. and Mrs. John Hurst and family, one of whom is Lady Hobbs. Sir Talbot also came by the same vessel. Mr. and Mrs. Rogers resided at Claremont, where Mrs. Rogers controlled a musical academy in which many of Western Australia's matrons of to-day received their early training upon the pianoforte. Among the late Mr. and Mrs. Rogers's surviving family circle are Mrs. Henry Trigg, of Henley Beach, near Adelaide, Mrs. Moody, of Osborne, and Mrs. Bernard Gidley, of North Perth.

ROGERS, George Herbert

Actor, comic vocalist

Born St. Albans, England, July 1820
Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 11 July 1839
Married Emma YOUNG (see below), St. David's, Hobart, 2 March 1844
Active Sydney, from 1848
Died Fitzroy, Melbourne, February 1872 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


At his benefit at the Royal Victoria Theatre in March 1851, Rogers gave the Comic Song (first time) Country Fair, "introducing the Cries of Sydney, with a great variety of other novel entertainments". It was later separately billed as a comic song Sydney cries and Cries of Sydney.


Marriages in the district of Hobart, 1844; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:831162; RGD37/1/3 no 1169 

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (22 March 1851), 3

"THE DRAMA. THE BENEFIT SEASON", Bell's Life in Sydney (29 March 1851), 2

"Royal Victoria Theatre", Bell's Life in Sydney (12 April 1851), 2

"Funeral Notices", The Argus (14 February 1872), 8

"RANDOM REMINISCENCES", Launceston Examiner (22 December 1894), 3s

Bibliography and resources:

"Rogers, George Herbert", Dictionary of Australian biography 2 (1949)

"George Herbert Rogers", Wikipedia

ROGERS, Emma (Miss Emma YOUNG; Miss YOUNG; Mrs. ROGERS; Mrs. G. H. ROGERS; Mrs. George Herbert ROGERS)

Dancer, vocalist, actor

Born Devonport, England, 1815; baptised St. Andrew, Plymouth, 15 October 1815, daugher of James YOUNG and Isabella Marshall FRISBY
Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 28 January 1842 (per Sydney, from the Downs, 3 October 1841)
Married George Herbert ROGERS (see above), St. David's, Hobart, 2 March 1844
Died Coogee, NSW, 15 October 1862, aged 47 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


The actors James Young (c. 1787-1851) and Isabella Marshall Frisby (1788-1849) were married at St. Leonard, Deal, Kent, on 23 June 1810. Emma Young, their second surviving child, was born in 1815, Charles Young, in 1823, and (Frances Mary) Fanny Young in 1835.

Emma Young was one of Anne Remens Clarke's party of new talent for Hobart theatre, including the Howsons and Gerome Carandini, that arrived in January 1842. She married the actor G. H. Rogers. They first appeared in Sydney in January 1848.


"SHIP NEWS", Colonial Times (1 February 1842), 2

[Advertisement], The Courier (18 February 1842), 3

"THE ALBERT THEATRE", The Courier (18 March 1842), 2

"THE THEATRE", The True Colonist Van Diemen's Land Political Despatch ... (7 October 1842), 3 

... Miss Young's benefit is this evening, we hope she will have a bumper house, for she is a most deserving young woman, and a most industrious and useful actress ... We believe Miss Young, although a very agreeable singer, and a splendid dancer, does not profess to teach music, and Mrs. Clarke has too much to do otherwise.

[Advertisement], The Courier (20 January 1843), 1

"THE THEATRE", Colonial Times (7 February 1843), 3

"THE THEATRE", The Courier (1 September 1843), 2

"THE THEATRE", Colonial Times (24 September 1844), 3

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Colonial Times (4 August 1846), 2

"DEATHS", Empire (17 October 1862), 1

"RANDOM REMINISCENCES", Launceston Examiner (22 December 1894), 3s


Choral conductor (Geelong Sacred Harmonic Society)

Active Geelong, VIC, 1854-55


"THE GEELONG SACRED HARMONIC SOCIETY", Geelong Advertiser (24 February 1855), 2

"THE GEELONG SACRED HARMONIC SOCIETY", Geelong Advertiser (3 March 1855), 2

"CHORAL SOCIETY. To the Editor", Geelong Advertiser (9 June 1855), 2

[Advertisement], Geelong Advertiser (26 June 1855), 2

"SACRED HARMONIC SOCIETY", Geelong Advertiser (4 February 1856), 2

"THE GEELONG SACRED HARMONIC SOCIETY'S CONCERT", Geelong Advertiser (27 February 1856), 2

ROLFE, Thomas (T. Rolfe Jun.; Thomas Hall ROLFE junior)

Organist, pianist, piano tuner, music publisher, music seller, agent for William Rolfe and Sons pianos

? Born 26 January 1819; baptised All Hallows, Honey Lane, London, England, 28 February 1819
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 10 January 1842 (per Duke of Roxburgh, from Cork, 4 September 1841)
Active Launceston, VDL (TAS), until April 1847
And Melbourne, VIC, until November 1847 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also Rolfe & Sons pianos in colonial Australia: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Thomas Rolfe junior, "agent for William Rolfe and Sons, Cheapside, London", was perhaps the Thomas Hall Rolfe born to Nicholas Rolfe and his wife Elizabeth in London in 1819; William Rolfe was his grandfather, and Thomas Hall Rolfe senior (1787-1847) his uncle. When Thomas Rolfe senior died early in 1847, his brother Nicholas was appointed his executor, and it is perhaps of some significance that Thomas junior disappears from the colonial record late that same year.

Rolfe first advertised new music for sale and pianos tuned in Sydney in February 1842. As early as April 1842 he was printing music locally, advertising:

This day is published, by T. Rolfe, 4, Hunter-street, THE EAGLE CHIEF and THE ABORIGINAL MOTHER, Australian Melodies. Nos. I and 2: Poet, Mrs. Dunlop; Composer, I. Nathan", and also "the celebrated Prince Albert's Band March, as played by the military bands, arranged for the pianoforte by Stephen Glover.

This latter drew adverse comment from the Herald, which noted:

Our music press has again been to work, and has issued, not an Australian composition calculated to undeceive those who imagine that we can only deal and barter, but a reprint of a very trashy piece for the pianoforte, called Prince Albert's Band March - the catchpenny title of which would be sufficient to deter any common-sensed amateur ... But are these the things we are to have reprinted in Australia? Certainly not.

Perhaps to atone for this, a fortnight later Rolfe advertised that he would publish "all the songs" from Charles Nagel's "Sham Catalani", or Mock Catalani, and four songs were issued: "A sensitive Plant", "It was but a dream", "The pretty bark hut in the bush", and "Wellington".

In June he released No. 1 of a projects series, The Australian musical bijou, which contained imported songs by Knight, Russell, and Bellini and which W. A. Duncan in the Chronicle judged "far superior to any lithographed music yet produced in the colony" despite several errors.

In 1843, Rolfe was offering to supply the instrumental needs of both military ensembles and "Teetotal, and other Bands", a section of the musical economy that George Hudson would later also target.

In July that year we also learn of a personal misfortune; his wife, variously Rachael or Rosetta Mears, whom he had married in Sydney on 23 August 1842, was charged and tried for bigamy. Having moved first to Pitt-street and then to George-street, Rolfe continued trading through the first half of 1844. But between July and September he relocated his business to Hobart, and by early 1845 to Launceston.

There he was appointed organist of St. John's Church in September 1845, and in 1846, along with James Henri Anderson, was one of the pianists assisting at Madame Gautrot's Launceston concert. He disappears from record after leaving Launceston for Melbourne in August 1847.

The novelist Frederick Rolfe ("Baron Corvo") (1860-1913) was born at the family firm's address, 61 Cheapside, London, son of James Rolfe (c.1827-1902), who was probably Thomas's younger brother.

Trading at:

Sydney, NSW, O'Connell Street, until March/April 1842

Regent Terrace, Hunter Street, from April 1842 until November/December 1842

26 Pitt Street, November/December 1842 until July 1843

Regent Terrace, Hunter Street, from July 1843 until December 1843/January 1844

George Street, from December 1843/January 1844 until August/September 1844

Hobart, VDL, Murray Street, from September 1844

Elizabeth Street, from January 1845 until mid 1845

Launceston, VDL, Elizabeth Street, by January 1846 to ? August 1847

? England, London, "Thomas Rolfe, piano-forte maker, Regent Street, and Marshall Street", 1858


"ARRIVED", Australasian Chronicle (11 January 1842), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (21 February 1842), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (24 February 1842), 3

"ORGANIST", Australasian Chronicle (8 March 1842), 2 

ORGANIST. - We call the attention of clergymen and others to a very liberal offer on the part of Mr. Rolfe, of O'Connell-street, announced an our advertising columns. The instrument alluded to is of excellent quality.

"NEW PERIODICAL", Sydney Free Press (14 April 1842), 2 

We have seen the prospectus of a new musical periodical, to be entitled the "Austrlian Musical Bijou," which is intended should sufficient inducement offer to be published by Messrs. T. Rolfe and Co., of Hunter-street. To use the words of the prospectus itself - "The numbers will appear monthly, inclosed in a wrapper, at the very small price of 2s. 6d. to subscribers, and 3s. 6d. to non subscribers. Each number will contain twelve pages of music, consisting of songs, duets, glees, waltzes, quadrilles, &c., &c., selected from the most popular writers; twelve of which numbers will form a volume, to which a title page and index will be published, which will appear with the twelfth number." - We can only say that for the sake of such of our friends as love music, we hope the undertaking will be carried out.

[Advertisement], Australasian Chronicle (28 April 1842), 3

"NEW MUSIC", Australasian Chronicle (3 May 1842), 2 

"Music", The Sydney Herald (5 May 1842), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (19 May 1842), 3

"NEW MUSIC", Australasian Chronicle (12 May 1842), 2

"NEW MUSIC", Australasian Chronicle (18 June 1842), 2

"CHARGE OF BIGAMY", Australasian Chronicle (22 July 1843), 2

CHAUDE or BIGAMY. - It will be seen by our Police Report that there is a case of bigamy at present under investigation before that Court. The hearing of the case commenced yesterday, before Mr. Windeyer and Alderman Broughton; it occupied the Court for upwards of two hours, and was then adjourned for a fortnight, to allow the complainant time to produce a witness residing at Goulburn, named Myers, a cousin of the defendant, who, it is alleged, saw the first marriage celebrated in London. The parties are Lewis Cohen, a man who had been transported for seven years from Van Diemen's Land to a penal settlement, where he became free about the year 1841. The defendant is a Mrs. Rolfe, late Myers, whose present husband keeps a music-shop in Pitt-street. From the evidence given yesterday, it appears that the complainant and defendant were married in London, after the Hebrew form, about twenty years ago, and while in London the defendant bore complainant two children. They afterwards went to Van Diemen's Land, where the complainant was convicted, and transported to a penal settlement for seven years ... On the 13th of August, 1842, the defendant again married a person named Rolfe, with whom she is at present living. It was also given in evidence by the Rev. B. Lewis Watson, minister of St. Andrew's parish, here, that he solemnised the said marriage by a special license, in which the defendant stated that she was a widow named Meurs; that soon after the marriage had been celebrated, Mr. Watson having been given to understand that the defendant had gone by the name of Myers, and was not a resident in his parish, called on her and Rolfe for an explanation, but none was given him . ..

[Advertisement], The Weekly Register 1/3 (12 August 1843), 38

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 January 1844), 3

"NEW MUSIC", The Australian (9 April 1844), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 July 1844), 1

[Advertisement], The Courier (7 September 1844), 1

"PIANOFORTES", The Cornwall Chronicle (29 January 1845), 3

"ORGANIST OF ST. JOHN'S CHURCH", The Cornwall Chronicle (24 September 1845), 186

This appointment has been given to Mr. T. Rolfe, who is the son of Mr. Rolfe the Piano-forte maker, of Cheapside in London. Mr. T. Rolfe purposes establishing himself in the town, as a Tuner and Repairer of Piano-fortes.

"SAINT JOHN'S CHRUCH SUNDAY AND DAY SCHOOLS", The Cornwall Chronicle (1 November 1845), 294-95

... We understand that considerable exertions are being made by the new organist of the Church, for the improvement of the children in Sacred Psalmody; but as Mr. Rolfe has only been in Launceston a few weeks, it would be unfair to give an opinion about their proficiency ... We have heard that the Bishop was pleased to compliment Mr. Rolfe on the performance of Sunday. The voluntary played at the commencement (selected from one of Casalis' Masses) was truly grand and soul-inspiring, and was executed in a manner highly creditable to the performer.

"MADAME GAUTROT'S CONCERT", The Cornwall Chronicle (18 February 1846), 132

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (16 September 1846), 715

"NEW YEAR'S DAY", The Cornwall Chronicle (2 January 1847), 6

"TO THE EDITOR ... LITERARY DISTINCTION", Launceston Examiner (30 January 1847), 5

"SHIPPING NEWS", The Courier (25 August 1847), 2

"DIED", The Port Phillip Patriot and Morning Advertiser (22 September 1847), 2 

On the 13th April last, aged 61, Mr. Thomas Hall Rolfe, of the firm of William Rolfe and Sons, Pianoforte Makers, Cheapside, London, and Uncle of Mr. T. Rolfe, of this place.

[Advertisement], The Port Phillip Patriot and Morning Advertiser (19 October 1847), 3 

"PROVISIONAL PROTECTIONS", The Mechanics' Magazine (16 May 1857), 476 

"CERTIFICATES", The Jurist (27 November 1858), 489 

[Report], The Law Times (6 February 1864), 159 

Extant colonial publications (see complete list here):

Note especially:

Second set of Royal Irish quadrilles, composed and dedicated to his friend Mons. T. Chap of Liverpool, by Jullien; these quadrilles were composed expressly for the Dublin Promenade Concerts and performed nightly with the greatest success by the author & his inimitable band (Sydney: Published by T. Rolfe, music seller, George Street, n.d); "Price 4/."; "J. Carmichael, Sc. Sydney"

John Carmichael's titlepage for Rolfe is one of his most impressive music covers, but notably different from that he engraved for Francis Ellard's roughly contemporary Sydney edition of the same title (see below), which has a view of Sackville Street, Dublin, as do the covers of Pigott's original Dublin editions (see below)

Note also that the music pages of Rolfe's edition do not use the same plates as Ellard's, see: Ellard edition (DIGITISED) Pigott titlepage (DIGITISED)

Bibliography and resources:

Martha Novak Clinkscale, Makers of the piano, volume 2, 1820-1860 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), 312-13 (PREVIEW)

Neidorf 1999, 228

Levi 2013, These are the names, 156

... on 27 July 1843, an embittered [Lewis] Cohen charged his wife with bigamy. While Cohen was in prison, Rachel had formed a relationship with a musician named Rolfe who lived in Pitt Street, Sydney. She had left Hobart Town, and on 23 August 1842, had married Mr. Rolfe. Cohen promptly arrived in Sydney, accepted £20 to keep quiet about her status, and then changing his mind, charged her with bigamy ...

Exeter working papers in British book trade history; the London book trades 1775-1800: a preliminary checklist of members. Names R

ROLFE, William, music seller and publisher and pianoforte maker, 112, Cheapside 1797-1830. Trading: alone 1797-1807; as William Rolfe and sons 1808-1816; as William Rolfe and Co. 1817-1826; as William Rolfe and sons 1827-1830. Previously partner in Culliford, Rolfe and Barrow. Humphries and Smith.



Active Melbourne, VIC, 1856


[Advertisement], The Argus (3 November 1856), 8 

Messrs. OAK and BAPTISTE respectfully inform the public that their Splendid New Concert Hall will be Opened on Monday next, with the following Company:
Madame Naej, Mrs. Pendleton, and Mr. Pendleton.
Pianist and Conductor - Mr. W. Rolfe.

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 March 1857), 8 

MUSIC HALL, Ship Hotel, Sandridge . . . Mrs. Oakey, the much admired soprano, Mr. Taylor, the favourite tenor, Mr. C Legrew, violin-1st, Mr. W. Rolf, pianist, and conductor . . .


Music publisher, bookbinder

Born Glasgow, Scotland, 11 December 1812
Arrived Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 26 August 1833 (per Othello)
Died Bay of Biscay, 10 January 1866 (in wreck of the London) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


A Scot himself, Hobart bookbinder and occasional publisher probably issued only this single lithographed musical print, Caller herrin ("The Celebrated Scotch Song ... as sung by Mr. J. R. Black, with symphony from Knapton's variations") on 31 December 1861. Notably, he made no mention of the fact that his fellow townswoman, Augusta Packer, was daughter of the song's composer, Nathaniel Gow, though her son Frederick Packer junior did deputise as pianist for John Reddie Black on one occasion.


[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Courier (17 November 1837), 1

[Advertisement], The Mercury (31 December 1861), 3

"NEW MUSIC", The Mercury (31 December 1861), 2 

We have received a copy of the celebrated Scotch song "Caller Herrin," which Mr. Black, the Vocalist, rendered so popular in Hobart Town, It is published by Mr. Rolwegan, of Collins Street, having been lithographed by J. Alvarez, of Warwick Street. The frontispiece is a beautiful specimen of illuminated lithography, and contains a vignette of St. Giles', Edinburgh, whilst in another vignette is a "Scotch lassie," vending " Caller Herrin." As a specimen of colonial art, it is highly creditable, and wo can only hope that both the publisher and the lithographer may meet with that success which their enterprise deserves.

[Advertisement], The Mercury (1 January 1862), 1

"THE FOUNDERING OF THE STEAMSHIP LONDON", The Mercury (19 March 1866), 2 

Other resources:

Caller herrin (The celebrated Scotch song ... as sung by Mr. J. R. Black, with symphony from Knapton's variations) (Hobart Town: G. Rolwegan, [1861/2]) (DIGITISED)

SL-TAS (TAO): George Rolwegan NG1326 [Records] [manuscript]

Bound volume of sheet music (half-bound in leather by G. Rolwegan, Hobart Town) 

This book of mostly imported music also contains copies of colonial works by Joseph Reichenberg, John Howson, and Francis Hartwell Henslowe.

ROMANO, Pietro

Harpist, composer

Born Viggiano, Italy, ? c. 1843
Arrived SA, c. 1890
Active Adelaide, SA, by 1895
Died Adelaide, SA, July 1941, "aged 98" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


ROPER, Edmund Alphonsus

Organist, pianist, arranger

Born Nottingham, England, 23 June 1846
Arrived Hobart, TAS, ? c.1855
Died Glebe, NSW, 28 March 1874, aged 27


"READING AT NEW TOWN", The Mercury (9 June 1868), 2

"MARRIAGES", The Mercury (17 August 1868), 1

"RESIGNATION OF MRS. E. A. ROPER", The Cornwall Chronicle (3 October 1868), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 December 1871), 8

"SYDNEY CHORAL SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 June 1873), 4

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 March 1874), 1

"DEATH OF MR. ROPER", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 March 1874), 4

The musical profession has lost a very promising young member in the death of Mr. Roper, the late organist of St. Patrick's Church, who died on Saturday evening after an illness of only a few days. Mr. Roper was well known in connection with the popular concerts given in Sydney, more particularly those of a sacred character.

"NEWS OF THE DAY", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 November 1878), 5

WE have received from Mr. J. R. Clarke, the publisher, a copy of "O Salutaris Hostia", as sung by Miss E. A. Moon. It was arranged by the late E. A. Roper (sometime organist of St. Patrick's Church). Many of our readers will no doubt be glad to obtain this arrangement of a much-admired air by Mercadante.

"ORGANIST'S UNIQUE RECORD", The Mercury (1 September 1923), 15


Pianist, composer

? Arrived Adelaide, SA, 15 December 1850 (per Australia, from Hamburg, 7 September)
Married Marian RUTTER, VIC, 1855
Active Bathurst, NSW, by January 1853 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


He was perhaps the "F. Rosenstein" who arrived in Adelaide from Hamburg in December 1850. He served as an interpreter in the trial of a German at Bathurst in February 1853. In Sydney in September 1853, Ferdinand Rosenstein, "The celebrated pianist ... from Hamburgh", advertised as a Quadrille pianist, appeared in concert with Flora Harris and John Howson, and saw his lost The remembrance polka ("dedicated with permission to the Hon. Mrs. Keith Stewart") published by Woolcott and Clarke. In December he was in Bathurst, advertising as local agent for Woolcott and Clark. He was in Melbourne by December 1854. He disappears from record after 1856. In 1861, Caroline Rosenstein (d.1867) of Hamburg arrived in South Australia, and in 1862 she advertised in Melbourne to ascertain his whereabouts.


? "SHIPPING", South Australian Gazette and Mining Journal (19 December 1850), 2 

"BATHURST ASSIZES", Bathurst Free Press and Mining Journal (26 February 1853), 2 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 September 1853), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (10 September 1853), 7

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 September 1853), 1

[Advertisement], Bathurst Free Press (10 December 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 December 1854), 3

"BENDIGO. THE WIZARD JACOBS", The Age (16 October 1855), 6 

This celebrated nicromancer is continuing to give his wonderfully clever performances every evening, in Burrall's Assembly Rooms, to crowded audiences. Mr. Jacobs's assistant, known as Sprightly, is almost as clever as tho Wizard himself, and plays his part well. I must notice, also, the very superior manner in which Mr. Rosenstein plays on the piano. He is the ablest and most accomplished pianist that we have had on Bendigo for a long time, and plays with far greater effect than Mr. Poling [recte Paling] did, who accompanied Miska Hauser. Mr. Rosenstein has been favored with several encores.

"BIRTHS", The Argus (27 September 1856), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 January 1862), 1 


Pianist, teacher of singing and German, professor of music, flute player

? Active Melbourne, VIC, 1853
Married Margaret BLACK, VIC, 1855 (Reg. 1415)
Active (? Geelong, VIC, 1858-60) Brisbane, QLD, by 1863
Died Towong, Brisbane, QLD, February 1890 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


A Mr. Rosenstengel played the flute in the band of the newly formed Melbourne Philharmonic in April 1853. He was probably Ferdinand Nicholas Rosenstengel, who married Margaret Black in Victoria, two years later in 1855. He was teaching music and languages at Geelong in 1858 and 1860, and appeared in a concert there in 1859, at which a glee attributed to him, entitled The bushmen, was also performed.

F. N. Rosenstengel advertised as a "Professor of Music" in Brisbane in January 1863, having arrived at Moreton Bay on board the ship Duke of Newcastle (from Cork and Liverpool); so either he had returned to Europe briefly in the interim, or he had merely joined the ship at another Australian port.

At his concert in Brisbane in July 1864 the band played an unattributed Bendigo polka, and his own Neptune schottische.

As conductor he collaborated with pianist Silvester Diggles in the Brisbane Philharmonic Concerts in 1867. A review of his Our Nellie's schottische (Brisbane: Gordon & Gotch, [1885]) imputing plagiarism prompted him to defend himself in print.


[Advertisement], The Argus (27 April 1853), 12 

SECOND GRAND CONCERT. MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY, Protestant Hall, THIS EVENING, WEDNESDAY, 27th April. Principal Vocal Performers - Miss Graham (her second appearance); Mr. Moran. Leader - Mr. F. Fischer. Director - Mr. G. Chapman. THE Band will consist of the following talented performers: Violins - Mr. A. Fischer, Mr. Strebinger, Mr. Thomson; Viola - Mr Thomas; Basso - Mr. C. Elza and Mr. Hardman; Cornet-a-Piston - Mr G. Chapman; Clarionet and Oboe - Sig. Blume; Flute- Mr. Rosenstengel. Pianoforte - Mr. Hertz and Mr. Thomson ...

[Advertisement], Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (5 August 1856), 1 

MR. ROSENSTENGEL begs lave to acquaint his friends and the public in general, that he continues to teach music; also, French, German and Italian. For particulars apply at his residence No. 122 Yarra-street.

[Advertisement], The Star (7 July 1858), 4

[Advertisement], Geelong Advertiser (14 November 1859), 4 

Glee - "The Bushmen" - Messrs. Shepherd, Buchan, Glennis- ter and Denholm - Rosenstengel .... Duet - (Violin and Piano) - Messrs. Andrews and Rosenstengel - L. Shuberth ...

[Advertisement], The Argus (26 December 1860), 8

[Advertisement], The Courier (30 January 1863), 3

"PRESENTATION TO THE REV. W. J. LARKIN", The Courier (5 February 1863), 2

[Advertisement], The Courier (8 June 1863), 3

"MR. P. C. CUNNINGHAME'S entertainment", The Courier (12 June 1863), 2

[Advertisement], The North Australian (26 September 1863), 4

"NOTES AND NEWS", The North Australian (19 July 1864), 2

"THE PHILHARMONIC CONCERTS", The Queenslander (30 March 1867), 12

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (16 July 1864), 1

"LADIES IN PARLIAMENT. TO THE EDITOR", The Brisbane Courier (23 April 1870), 5

"MARRIAGES", The Queenslander (29 March 1879), 385

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (28 May 1883), 1

[News], The Brisbane Courier (29 June 1883), 5

[News], The Brisbane Courier (16 June 1885), 5

"OUR NELLIE'S SCHOTTISCHE. TO THE EDITOR", The Brisbane Courier (18 June 1885), 5

"NEW MUSIC", Queensland Figaro and Punch (12 February 1887), 3

[News], The Brisbane Courier (27 February 1890), 4

A large circle of musical friends will read with regret of the death of Herr Rosenstengel, the clever pianist and teacher of music, who has practised and taught in Brisbane for something like a quarter of a century. Among other positions which he filled was that of teacher to the choirs of St. Stephen's Cathedral and St. Patrick's Church, Fortitude Valley. The deceased gentleman's funeral took place yesterday afternoon and was largely attended. The procession was headed by a band composed of those anxious to do honour to so old a musician. At the Toowong General Cemetery the service was read by the Rev. Father Fouhy.

[Advertisement; probate], The Brisbane Courier (29 March 1890), 2


Oboist, violinist, composer, Teacher of Music

Active Brisbane, QLD, from 1883


Ludwig Rosenstengel, nephew of F. N. Rosenstengel and "a pupil of Herr Ton, chef d'orchestre of the private orchestra of H.R.H. the grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar" made his first Brisbane appearance at his uncle's concert in May 1883.


[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (28 May 1883), 1

[News], The Brisbane Courier (29 June 1883), 5

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (5 September 1883), 1

"NEW MUSIC", Queensland Figaro and Punch (14 January 1888), 11s 

Reminiscence of the Ruins of Pompeii. Nocturne, for piano, by Ludwig Rosenstengel, junior. Gordon & Gotch, publishers, Brisbane. The latest candidate for public favor in the shape of local musical composition is the nocturne, by our townsman, Herr Rosenstengel, the well-known oboe player. The general character of the piece is in strict keeping with its title, being a graceful idyll phrased in simple, dreamy style. The melody is clear and well marked, and within the reach of the veriest tyro on the keyboard, and, barring a few clerical errors, is worth including in every music portfolio. Herr Rosenstengel, I believe, makes his first bow to a Queensland audience as a composer in this instance, and from such a promise I think he will issue yet something of a more ambitious and enduring nature. The frontispiece is hardly up to the best productions of the publishers, otherwise the get-up is passable. For the benefit of the beginner, I ought to mention that the nocturne is written throughout in six-eight time, in E flat major, with a brief modulation in the relative key of B flat after the orthodox rule.

ROSNATI, Ferante

Tenor vocalist

Died 1884 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


ROSS, Thomas Andrew

Singing master (late Organist of St. Nicholas Church, Dundalk), Teacher of Vocal and instrumental music

Active Brisbane, QLD, by 1865
Died Brisbane, QLD, 1892


[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (6 December 1865), 1

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (11 November 1865), 1

"COURT OF REQUESTS", The Brisbane Courier (5 December 1867), 2

[Advertisement - probate], The Brisbane Courier (16 July 1862), 7

ROSSI, Elena (Madame ROSSI)

Soprano vocalist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1854 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Madame Elena Rossi, a "Pupil of Signors Garcia and Crevelli ... just arrived from England" first appeared in concert in Melbourne for John Winterbottom on 30 January 1854, singing a scene from Ernani, and again for him in a concert at Prahran in June. Otherwise unknown, her explanation that her teacher Garcia was also "singing master to Jenny Lind and Madame Sontag" may be a clue as to her identity, perhaps as a relation of Henriette Sontag, also widely known by her married name of Madame Rossi (and who, coincidentally, died in Mexico in June 1854)


[Advertisement], The Argus (23 January 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (27 January 1854), 10

[Advertisement], The Argus (28 January 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 June 1854), 3

ROWE, Joseph

? Amateur vocalist, ironmonger, plumber

Active Adelaide, SA, by 1850s

ROWE, Louisa Jane (Miss ROWE; Mrs. John PARKIN)

Vocalist (pupil of Carl Linger), pianist

Born c.1843 (daughter of Joseph ROWE)
Active Adelaide, SA, from 1858
Died Adelaide, SA, 29 November 1919, aged 76 years, a colonist of 76 years (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


A pupil of Carl Linger, Rowe notably sang in the first public performance of Linger's Song of Australia at Gawler in December 1859, and on the same program gave the first performance on the piano of Linger's lost Fantasia on the Song of Australia.


[Advertisement], South Australian Register (14 July 1854), 1

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (15 July 1854), 1

"GRAND CONCERT", South Australian Register (17 July 1854), 2

"MRS. MITCHELL'S CONCERT", South Australian Register (15 February 1855), 3

"MR. R. B. WHITE'S CONCERTS", South Australian Register (11 March 1858), 4

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (13 June 1859), 1

"SIGNOR CUTOLO'S CONCERT", The South Australian Advertiser (16 June 1859), 2

"GAWLER INSTITUTE", South Australian Register (14 December 1859), 3

"GRAND CONCERT AT THE GAWLER INSTITUTE", The South Australian Advertiser (14 December 1859), 3

? "NORTH ADELAIDE WESLEYAN CHAPEL", South Australian Weekly Chronicle (22 December 1860), 6 

. . . A vote of thanks to the Chairman, the ladies, and the choir was then passed, after which several gentlemen addressed the meeting. The choir, under the direction of Mr. J. Rowe, during the evening performed the following pieces of sacred music: - "Jehovah's awful throne," "Lift up your head, O Zion," "When the Lord shall build up Zion," also Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus," from the Messiah. A solo by Miss Tozer, "Eve's lamentation," was beautifully sung and deservedly applauded. The meeting separated at 10 o'clock.

"MARRIAGES", South Australian Register (4 June 1866), 2

"DEATHS", The Advertiser (2 December 1919), 6

"OLD PUPIL OF CARL LINGER", The Advertiser (16 March 1936), 20

"CHIT CHAT FOR WOMEN", The Advertiser (4 October 1927), 8

ROWE, John

Choral singer, bandsman, brass instrumentalist

Died Reading, PA, USA, 1917, in his 92nd year (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROWE, Richard

Choral singer, precentor, brass instrumentalist

Born c. 1833
Arrived SA, 1857
Died East Adelaide, SA, 17 May 1897, aged 64 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROWE, William

Choral singer, bandsman, brass instrumentalist

Born Truro, Cornwall, England, 1821
Arrived SA, 1855 (from Victoria)
Died North Kensington, SA, 20 March 1910, in his 90th year (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"THE LATE MR. RICHARD ROWE", The Advertiser (18 May 1897), 6 

Old colonists and others will regret to learn of the death at the age of 64 of Mr. Richard Rowe, which occurred at his residence, St. Peters-street, East Adelaide, on Monday. The deceased, who came from Truro, Cornwall, arrived in the colony in 1857, and soon identified himself with the leading musical circles of the time. With two elder brothers, William and John, who survive him, he took part in most of the choral productions presented under the conductorship of the late Herr Carl Linger. He also sang in oratorio music with the Pirie-screet Wesleyan Church choir, of which the three brothers were prominent members for a long time. His latest public appearance was as precentor at St. Andrew's Church, Wakefield-street. Mr. Rowe entered business as a fancy goods importer in Rundle-street, and for 30 years be successfully carried on. He then retired into private life, and took up his residence in St. Peters-street, East Adelaide, where he passed quietly away, leaving a wife and daughter to mourn their loss.

"Mr. William Rowe", Observer (26 March 1910), 36 

In our obituary columns is announced the death in his ninetieth year, of Mr. William Rowe, of North Kensington, and formerly of Britannia Foundry, Strathalbyn. Mr. Rowe was an early South Australian. He arrived in 1855 from Victoria, where he spent a few months on the gold diggings without success. On arrival in South Australia an engagement was secured at the coachbuilding establishment of the late Mr. Samuel Carvosso, then the leading maker jn Adelaide, and after many years' service Mr. Rowe transferred to the late Mr. Crimp. In 1867 he took over the Strathalbyn Foundry from the late Hon. J. G. Ramsay, and in a few years was able to retire into private life. Eventually a branch was opened in Adelaide. At the southern town when municipal powers were obtained Mr. Rowe was among its first Councillors. The musical fraternity will recall how in the early days the three brothers - William, John, and Richard - were famous for their oratorio and glee performances, being associated with the leading societies of the day, and afterwards instrumental music under the late Herr Schrader. The deceased was born in Truro, Cornwall, in 1821. He had lived in retirement at his late residence since 1883. The surviving members of Mr. Rowe's family are: - Mrs. M. J. Barry, widow, and Mr. William Rowe, Government Printing office. His wife recently predeceased him.

"PERSONAL NEWS", The Express and Telegraph (8 February 1917), 2 

Word has just been received from Reading, Pa., U.S.A., of the death, in his 92nd year, of Mr. John Rowe, formerly of Adelaide, who, like his brothers, Messrs. William and Richard Rowe, was an accomplished musician, and rendered good service especially, in church choral work, to the community. The three brothers were largely self-taught, but received their early training in music in their native town of Truro, Cornwall. With others, the Rowe family introduced oratorio work in this State, and the fine rendering of selections from the "Messiah" and other masterpieces, given at the Pirie-street Methodist Church and elsewhere, as far back as 1858, still gives pleasant memories to many old colonists. For glee and part singing the brothers were equally well noted. They were also members of Herr Schrader's brass band, the leader, it is claimed, being one of the most gifted cornet players who ever performed in South Australia. Mr. John Rowe spent many years in the United States as a professional musician, and on retiring settled in Reading, amidst a circle of friends. The only surviing member of the family of Mr. John Rowe is his daughter, Miss Annie Rowe, who lives at Reading.

ROWE, Joseph Andrew (Joseph Andrew ROWE; Mr. J. A. ROWE)

Circus proprietor, concert promoter

Born North Carolina, USA, 1819
Arrived (1) Melbourne, VIC, 1 May 1852 ( from San Francisco)
Departed (2) Melbourne, VIC, 1854 (for San Francisco)
Arrived (2) Sydney, NSW, 27 April 1858 (per Leveret, from Auckland)
Departed (2) ?
Died San Francisco, CA, USA, 5 November 1887

See Rowe's American Circus (Melbourne)

Image: "Ye People of Australia proceedynge to enjoie Themselves at Mister Rowe his Circus" (S. T. Gill), National Musuem of Australia 


In 1849, Rowe took the first circus to San Francisco. Sailing from there, he arrived in Melbourne with his company on 1 May 1852, and six weeks later opened his circus building on the corner of Lonsdale and Exhibition streets. Rowe left Melbourne in 1854 to return to San Francisco, reputedly taking with him £40 000 in cash and treasure (St Leon).

Bibliography and resources:

Mark St, Leon, "Circus", eMelbourne 

"Joseph Andrew Rowe", Wikipedia 

Guide to the Joseph Andrew Rowe Papers, 1857-1861; California State Library 

ROYAL, Creed (James Creed ROYAL)

Flautist, composer

Born England, ? 1807/8
Arrived Australia, 1853
Died Fitzroy, VIC, 15 March 1876, in his 68th year (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROYAL, Mary (Mary SAYER; Mrs. James Creed ROYAL (1); Mrs. Creed ROYAL)

Contralto vocalist, dancer, teacher of music, singing, and dancing

Born Gloucestershire, England, c. 1822
Married James Creed ROYAL, Gloucestershire, England, 1840
Died Collingwood, VIC, 2 August 1856 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROYAL, Frances (? Frances JOHNSTONE; Mrs. James Creed ROYAL (2); Mrs. Creed ROYAL)


Married James Creed ROYAL, VIC, 1860

ROYAL, Eliza (Miss Creed ROYAL, Eliza Creed ROYAL; Miss Lizzie ROYAL; Mrs. Thomas Wright ROWE; Mrs. Daniel O'HARA)

? Vocalist

Born Cheltenham, Gloucestershite, Engand, c. 1844
Died Rockhampton, QLD, 2 May 1876 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ROYAL, Kate (Miss Kate Creed ROYAL; Miss Kate ROYAL; Mrs. DE LA CHAPELLE)

? Vocalist

Born Brighton, Sussex, England, 20 January 1844
Married Jean-Joseph Xavier Alfred DE LA CHAPELLE, 1862
Died Paris, France, 8 April 1878 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

? ROYAL, Bonnie (? Eliza above)


ROYAL, Harry Creed

Piano tuner

Born Geelong, VIC, 1854

Image: (sketch by Gordon McCrae)


Creed Royal was active in Melbourne by February 1853 and later that year settled in Geelong. A Splendid NEW SCHOTTISCHE ("Patronised by Lady Barkley") composed by him, published by George Chapman, was advertised in Melbourne in February 1857 (no copy identified), and his The Governor Musgrave schottische (Adelaide: J. Woodman) appeared in October 1873.

There are also later (posthumous) references to a Fantasie brillante for flute composed by Creed Royal. In the opera Lucia in Melbourne on the evening of 6 march 1876, the Argus noted

Mr. Creed Royal was greatly missed from the band in the early part of the work last night; but in the "Mad Scene", the flute obligato part was played with consummate skill by Signor Giammona.

Royal died a week later.


[Advertisement], Windsor and Eton Express [England] (24 October 1835), 1

A GRAND CONCERT ... WINDSOR, WEDNESDAY, October 28th ... Leader - Mr. H. BLAGROVE, (Violinist to her Majesty) ... Flute - Mr. Royal; Clarionet - Mr. Pickworth; Horns - Messrs. Catchpole and Stock; Bassoon - Mr. Snelling.

[Advertisement] Morning Post [London] (10 April 1839), 6

THEATRE ROYAL, LYCEUM ... PROMENADE CONCERTS A LA MUSARD. Programme. - Overture, Fra Diavolo, Auber; Solo on the flute by Mr. Royal ...

Brighton Gazette [England] (18 August 1842), 2


[News], Brighton Gazette [England] (24 November 1842), 3

Thomas Oddy, keeper of beer-shop the Western Road, was charged with assault on the wife of Mr. James Creed Royal, a musician, at the Theatre.

[Advertisement], Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser [England] (12 July 1845), 1

MR. ROYAL, Professor of the Flute, Piano-Forte, and Singing, 26, Faulkner street. - A FLUTE CLASS for the Practice of Quartetts, Trios, &c. - Terms moderate.

[Advertisement], Manchester Times [England] (12 December 1846), 1

CREED ROYAL, Professor of the Flute and Piano Forte, REMOVED to 21, Downing-street, Ardwick. Bands provided for Quadrille parties.

"PROMENADE CONCERTS", Staffordshire Advertiser (14 July 1849), 4

Monday and Tuesday evenings, Mr. J. Nunns gave a concert of instrumental music in the Institution Room, Newcastle, to highly respectable, though not numerous audiences ... A fantasia composed by Richardson was brilliantly executed by Creed Royal, who is flautist of known celebrity ...

[Advertisement], Manchester Times [England] (11 August 1849), 8

WHEREAS a petition of CREED ROYAL, at present, and for twenty weeks past, residing at No. 16, Back King-street, Manchester ... and for six months previous thereto, residing at No. 37, Peter-street, Manchester ... in lodgings, and for eighteen months immediately previous thereto, residing at No. 30, Quay-street, Manchester ... professor of music and musical instrument seller, an insolvent debtor ...

"INSOLVENT DEBTORS", The Jurist 13/658 (18 August 1849), 305

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 February 1853), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (22 February 1853), 8

"ARE WE TO BE A MUSICAL COMMUNITY", Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (31 August 1853), 2

"THE DIGGINGS", Brighton Gazette [England] (3 November 1853), 7

A great number of letters from Brighton emigrants have lately been received here their friends ... Mr. Henry Chate, tailor, has received a letter from his son. It appears that he has been with Winterbottom's musical corps in Sydney; and has done pretty well. They have latterly returned to Melbourne. Mr. Tucker, son of Mr. Tucker, Western Road, is the leader. He is called at Melbourne the English Paganini. Mr. Thom, who also went from Brighton, is engaged at the Theatre in Geelong. He leads the orchestra, and Mrs. Thom is engaged as an actress. Mrs. Thom took her benefit the Theatre, on July 16th, when nearly £100 was taken at the doors. Mr. Thom took his benefit the next night, and £107 was taken. The performances were Guy Mannering and a Concert. Many of our readers will doubtless remember Mr. Creed Royal, an excellent flute player. He is engaged in the same orchestra as Mr. Thom.

[Listing and Advertisement], The Geelong commercial directory and almanac for 1854 (Geelong: For the proprietors, 1854), 61-62 165 

[Advertisement], The Argus (17 February 1857), 8

"New Music", South Australian Register (11 October 1873), 5

"THE OPERA. LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR", The Argus (7 March 1876), 7

[News], The Argus (16 March 1876), 5

Mr. Creed Royal died yesterday, at an advanced age, after having I been for years past one of the leading flautists in the operatic orchestra. He was kindly thought of by all who knew him, and was a man of large experience. He played under Mendelssohn when that great master first produced his oratorio "Elijah" at Birmingham, in 1847. The late Mr. Creed Royal leaves a widow in feeble health.

"DEATHS", The Argus (18 March 1876), 1

"THE LATE MR. CREED ROYAL", Launceston Examiner (1 April 1876), 3

"ROCKHAMPTON", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 May 1876), 5

Mrs. O'Hara, known as Miss Creed Royal, died to-day.

"NORTHERN NEWS", The Queenslander (20 May 1876), 8

[News], The Argus (13 October 1876), 5

"MRS. CREED ROYAL. TO THE EDITOR", The Argus (26 October 1876), 10

"NEWS AND NOTES", The Ballarat Star (23 October 1878), 2 

The Melbourne correspondent of the Ararat Advertiser says: - "Among the passengers by the Chimborazo was Mrs. Creed Royal, and daughters. The friends of the late Mr. Creed Royal, whose musical abilities are widely known, will be glad that a long Chancery suit has terminated in favor of his heirs, and that his widow and daughters are comfortably provided for. The interest which had accumulated on the money in the bank was surprising, but the case had been going on for a long time.

[Advertisement], Morning Bulletin (23 October 1878), 3

"CARMEN", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 August 1879), 6

ROYLE, Bert (Albert)

Baritone vocalist, librettist, songwriter

Born England, 1860/1
Arrived Australia, c. 1889
Died NZ, 18 September 1929, aged 68 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"Green-room Gossip", Illustrated Sydney News (18 February 1893), 19

"THE LATE MR. BERT ROYLE", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 September 1929), 12

... An Englishman by birth, Mr. Royle came to Australia about 40 years ago with an English opera company, in which he sang baritone roles. After this company had departed he remained here, and became well known in character parts in "straight" drama, such as the role of Hardress Cregan in "Colleen Bawn." He wrote the libretto for a number of the J. C. Williamson musical productions of 35 years ago, including "Djin-Djin" and "Matsa," and superintended the details of the staging.

Theatrical productions: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Songs: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


There's something about 'er as fetches yer (written by Bert Royle; composed by Hewetson Burne) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., [1892/93] 

I've chucked up my push for the donah (Australian Larrikin song) (Sydney & Melbourne versions complete; written by Bert Royle; music by Lovell Phillips (Sydney: W. H. Paling & Co., [1893]) 

I love but thee (words by Bert Royle; music by Leon Caron) (Sydney: Nicholson & Co., 1897) 

It may be love (words by Bert Royle; music by Leon Caron) (Sydney: Nicholson & Co., 1897) 


See Dinah MURRAY


"Musician", piano tuner, ? convict

Active Launceston, VDL (TAS), 1838


"LAUNCESTON POLICE", The Cornwall Chronicle (31 March 1838), 1

John Rukely, a regular barn-door bred bumpkin, was complained of by his master, for neglect of duty. Mr. Chittleburgh stated that nothing more was required of the fellow than to keep clean a couple of rooms, and occasionally to chop a little wood, neither of which he would do. The fellow, when called on for his reason, said, he was never accustomed to washingrooms. No, he was a MUSICIAN. And pray, said the magistrate, on what instrument do you play? Oh! answered the clod-pole, I tunes pianny fortes, but all my family are musicians. Had he said he was a milliner, his appearance could not have more blankly contradicted his assertion. The magistrate sentenced this Orpheus to try if he could not make the stones jump to the music of his hammer, for the space of two months.


Amateur pianist, astronomer

Born Stargard, Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Germany, 18 May 1788
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 7 November 1821 (in the suite of governor Thomas Brisbane)
Departed Sydney, NSW, January 1829 (for London)
Died Lisbon, Portugal, 1862 (NLA persistent identifier)


Governor Thomas Brisbane's private astronomer, Rümker was also a keen amateur musician, as Elizabeth Macarthur and George Boyes recorded.


Letter from Elizabeth Macarthur, Parramatta, 4 September 1822; ed. in Sibella Macarthur Onslow (ed.), Some early records of the Macarthurs of Camden (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1914), 373-74

I have already said that we are much pleased with Sir Thomas Brisbane and His Family. The Governor himself is fond of scientific pursuits, and is devoted to astronomy in particular. He brought with him a number of valuable instruments, which are set up in an observatory which he has had built near the Government House at Parramatta. Mr. Rumker a Gentleman well known in the annals of science, and a German by birth came to this country with Sir Thomas. He is domiciled with the family and has charge of the Observatory ... Lady Brisbane has a good Piano, on which she occasionally plays, and accompanies the instrument with her voice. Miss Macdougall plays the Harp, and Mr. Rumker the Piano in turn. The Germans are passionately fond of music.

George Boyes, letter to Mary Boyes, 12 April 1824 (ed. Chapman 1985, 178-79)

[21 February 1824] ... Runker [sic] walked over from his farm to De A's [De Arrietta's] for dinner - 8 miles through a hot wind and under a burning sun - of course a little discomposed the arrangements of his toilet. He apologized for his appearance and therefore nothing more can be said ... [179] ... In the course of the evening [Rumker] talked much and well upon the fine arts - spoke of Memmon's Head and the Horses upon Monte Cavallo - told me he played the piano - murdered an air of Cimarosa's and fell fast asleep. The exercise, the wine and the unusual animation of the evening ...

Bibliography and resources:

G. F. J. Bergman, "Rümker, Christian Carl Ludwig (1788-1862)", Australian dictionary of biography 2 (1967)

RUSH, Emily Agnes (Emelie RUSH; Mrs. William Rutherford ALCOCK)

Contralto vocalist

Born Maclean, NSW, 24 September 1874
Died Grafton, NSW, 1962


Gard 2011 has a brief biography of Michael Rush's sister Emily Rush, who was a member of the Hallewell Glee Club (275-76: Other musical references include details of the Rush-Trickett rowing race, the background to Giorza's Trickett galop and the song The champion and Rush (by a True Cornstalk).


[News], Clarence and Richmond Examiner (6 June 1891), 4

St. Mary's Pro Cathedral. On Sunday last Gounod's beautiful Ave Maria was rendered with much taste and expression. Miss Emily Rush's fine contralto voice was in splendid form, clear and powerful on the high notes, impressing one throughout with the sentiment of the prayer. The violin, obligato by Miss Steber was well and efficiently performed, one or two passages especially shewing the skill, as well as careful training, of the performer. Miss M. Kearney also performed her part admirably. Much credit is due to the members of the choir for the pains they take in the interest of church music.

"Mr. Hallewell's Pupils' Concert", Evening News (25 June 1896), 8 

A large audience assembled in the Y.M.C.A. Hall last evening at the concert given by the pupils of Mr. F. J. Hallewell. The programme opened with. a well-rendered number, "Hail, Smiling Morn," by the Hallewell Glee Club. In "Wher'er You Walk" Mr. Miller sang with pleasing care and good expression. Miss Emelie Rush revealed herself the possessor of a rich contralto voice in Blumenthal's "Life," and was recalled.

Bibliography and resources:

Gard 2011

RUSSELL, ? [probably not his real name]

Convict, bushranger, vocalist, chorister

Active near Bathurst, NSW, 1834; afterward, Norfolk Island


Roger Therry, Reminiscences of thirty years' residence in New South Wales and Victoria . . . second edition (London: Sampson, Low, Son, and Co., 1863), 123-26 

[123] . . . It was positively perilous to venture a few miles from Sydney, in consequence of the daring of the bushrangers. It fell to my lot to have once passed through the exciting ordeal of an interview with them on the Bathurst mountains in 1834 . . . At a lonely spot, on my way to the Bathurst circuit, about ten o'clock in the morning, I was hailed by two men, partially hidden behind a tree, their guns pointed at and covering the heads of myself and servant, with the cry of "Stop, or I'll send the contents of this through you!" . . .

[124] . . . The captain of the gang, however, a convict for life, named Russell, suspecting I had put my hands into my pocket to search there for pistols, desired me at once to take them out, or he would shoot me on the spot . . .

[126] . . . These fellows were afterwards apprehended for another and still more serious robbery. They were transported to Norfolk Island, where I understood Russell, the captain of the gang, became leader of the choir in the little church on the island. His fine voice no doubt captivated the chaplain, and constituted "a case of special circumstances" and exempted him from hard labour . . .


Conductor, choral trainer, founder of the Melbourne Philharmonic Society

Born c. 1805
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1853
Died Melbourne, VIC, 2 August 1872, aged 67 years (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Argus (5 October 1853), 8

"MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (1 August 1855), 4

In October, 1853, the members of the choir of the Wesleyan Church, Collins-street, in conjunction with a few other lovers of choral music, requested Mr. John Russell to aid them in the formation of a musical society, and to become its conductor. That gentleman, whose extensive experience, taste, and indefatigable zeal in the diffusion of musical knowledge pre-eminently qualified him for such an office, having given his cordial assent to the proposal, the Melbourne Philharmonic Society was formed.

"THE NEWS OF THE DAY", The Age (18 March 1868), 4 

A MEETING OF THE PROFESSORS OF MUSIC was held yesterday, at Messrs. Wilkie, Webster and Co.'s, Collins-street east, to determine what steps should be taken to render a complimentary musical entertainment to Mr. John Russell, who, in consequence of ill-health, is leaving the colony for Europe. Mr. J. Summers, Mus. Bac. Oxon., occupied the chair, and stated that he understood Mr. Russell had just claims upon the public of this town, having founded the Philharmonic Society, conducted ninety-one concerts, introduced the great choral works of Beethoven, Handel, Mozart, and Mendelssohn, and devoted the greater part of his life in educating the young and popular taste. Mr. David Lee stated that the Congregational Chapel, Coliins-street east, of which Mr Russell is organist, had been granted for the use of the Sacred concert, and that much valuable assistance had been promised from the various societies of the town. It was arranged the concert should take place on the 2nd of April.

"DEATHS", The Argus (3 August 1872), 4

"CITY AND SUBURBS", Advocate (10 August 1872), 15 

THE remains of Mr. John Russell, a gentleman who has done much to promote a taste for music in this colony, were interred in the General Cemetery on Sunday last. Mr. Russell came to Melbourne in 1853, and was the pioneer of music in this city, having been the founder of the present Philharmonic Society of Melbourne. Since that time until 1867 he was a leading spirit of the society, and conducted no less than 91 of their concerts, introducing to Melbourne audiences the great choral works of Beethoven, Handel, Mozart, and Mendelssohn, and quite succeeded in instilling into the public a taste for highclass music. In the early part of 1867 he was seized with a slight paralytic stroke, which gradually developed into the malady which eventually caused his death. He went to England in 1868 in search of renewed health, and returned to Melbourne in March last, only to end his days in the land of his adoption, at the age of 67 years. Mr. Russell was for many years secretary to the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce, but was of course of late years out of business.

[News], The Argus (13 August 1872), 4

A number of old colonists, identified in various ways with the earlier history of Victoria, have lately passed away. One of these was Mr. John Russell, who was extensively known and much respected, especially in the musical profession, as a most enthusiastic lover of music, not only in Australia, but also in England and America. He was one of the original fenders of the Philharmonic Society of Liverpool, his native town, and he founded also the Harmonic Society of Brooklyn, America, in 1849. From thence he came to Melbourne in 1853, and was the pioneer of music in this city, having been the founder of the present Philharmonic Society of Melbourne. He was for many years secretary to the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce, but was of late years out of business. He died at the age of 67.

"SUMMARY FOR EUROPE", The Argus (13 August 1872), 1s


Bibliography and resources:

Carne 1954


Teacher of piano (pupil of Charles Packer), composer

Active Sydney, NSW, by 1876


Leader (Euphonic Orchestral Society), violinist, teacher of violin and viola

Active Sydney, NSW, 1880


Levi 2013 identifies Philip Russell and a brother David as sons of Henry Russell (c.1812-1898), who arrived in VDL in 1833 on the Lady East, and who, he claims, was also a professional musician. Levi, however, mistakenly cites several references to William Wilkins Russell in building Henry's biography, as well as to another Henry Russell, the famous singer-songwriter.


"The Euphonic Orchestral Society ...", Evening News (19 June 1874), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 January 1876), 2

"The Sydney Cricketers' Schottische", Evening News (7 March 1877), 2 

We have received a copy of the above-named piece of music, which is the first published composition of its author, Mr. Phil. Russell. As a schottische it displays considerable melody, but in its harmonies and modulations there are errors which betoken immatured theoretical knowledge, which should be remedied ere the composer publishes his second edition. The piece is not difficult of execution, and will he heard with pleasure by those whose little feet patter upon the drawing-room floor. The music is clearly and well printed, and is published by James Reading, of George street.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 January 1879), 3

"EUPHONIC ORCHESTRAL SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 July 1880), 6 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 August 1880), 8 

Bibliography and resources:

Levi 2013, These are the names, 720

RUSSELL, William Wilkins (c.1798/99-1892)

Professor of Music, composer, double-bass player

See main page: 

RUST, Margaret (Miss DUFF; Mrs. RUST; Mrs. George RUST; Margaret RUST)

Soprano vocalist, Professor of Singing

Born ? England, c.1805
Arrived Sydney, NSW, by 20 April 1835
Died Sydney, NSW, 19 November 1840, "aged 35" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


A soprano vocalist, Margaret Duff (perhaps a daughter of J. Duff, the music-seller and publisher, of Duff and Hodgson) was a pupil at the Royal Academy of Music in London in 1828. Alternatively, a Margaret Duff, daughter of Daniel and Jane Duff, was born on 16 October 1805, and baptised at Tooting Graveney, Surrey, England, 11 November 1805, dates that agree with her reported age of 35 at her death in 1840.

On 14 September 1833, a George Rust, bachelor "aged 21", obtained a license to marry Margaret Duff, spinster "aged 21" [? at least], of the parish of St George, Bloomsbury, at his parish church, St. Andrew's Holborn.

"Professor of Singing, Pupil of the Royal Academy, London, and Member of the Philharmonic Society of Milan", Margaret Rust (wife of wholesale butcher and grazier George Rust) was newly arrived in Sydney when she first sang at Thomas Stubbs's concert in April 1835. It was reported in July that she was to give a concert of her own, but this did not eventuate, perhaps because she was pregnant (she gave birth to a daughter, Jane, sadly short-lived, in January). This did not prevent her from singing in the meantime at bishop Bede Polding's inauguration at St. Mary's Chapel in September.

During 1836 she was regularly mentioned singing at St. Mary's, both during services, and in Wallace's Oratorio in September. Thereafter, while probably continuing to sing at St Mary's, she disappears from record during 1837 and 1838. She again announced a concert in September 1839, but it too never eventuated.

Having given birth to a son, William, she died in November 1840.


"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", London Evening Standard (10 July 1828), 3

The pupils of the Royal Academy of Music gave yesterday a vocal and instrumental Concert at the Hanoverian Rooms. After the overture, the opening of the vocal performance was entrusted to Miss Lloyd and Miss Williams, who sang Marcello's duo, "Qu'al Anelante," in excellent style. Part of "Haydn's Creation;" "And God said let the earth bring forth, &c." were sung with much pathos by Mr. E. Seguin. Miss Duff and Miss Bromley executed Rossini's duetto "In van tu fingi," with considerable taste . . . The whole concluded with the finale from Mozart's La Clemenza di Tito.

[Royal Academy of Music, monthly concert, 6 September 1828]; see Cazalet, The history of the Royal Academy of Music, 220-21 

[221] PART II . . . ARIA. "Oh! cara Memoria". Miss Duff - Rossini . . . SESTETTO. "Sola! Sola!" Misses Bellchambers, Duff, and Bromley; Messrs. Hodges, E. Seguin, and A. Sapio. ("II Don Giovanni") - Mozart . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", London Evening Standard (3 November 1828), 1

The concert given by the pupils on Saturday, at the Hanover-square Rooms, was attended by a numerous and elegant audience, who had every reason to be well satisfied with the performances . . . A duet from Maometto was well sung by Miss Duff and Mr. E. Seguin, especially the latter; his voice is extremely good, and his execution has a desirable smoothness. Miss Duff is a youthful aspirant of fair promise; she is an extraordinary proficient, and time will enable her to acquire a yet greater degree of precision and certainty in her manner of singing. The performances were generally well received.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC. MR. C. PACKER'S CONCERT", Berkshire Chronicle (13 December 1828), 2

. . . The Cavatina "Ah, come rapida," Miss Duff, was given in addition to the pieces announced. This song afforded a decided proof of this lady's high musical ability, and formed a rich addendum to the performances. This was the first performance of the Royal Academy of Music in the country . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The Harmonicon 7 (April 1829), 119 

The pupils of this establishment performed their first concert for the present season on Friday, April 3rd, at the Hanover Square Rooms. The following is the selection made for the occasion. Part 1. Symphony (No. 6.) MOZART; "Benedictus," Misses Duff and Williams, Messrs. Rankin and A. Sapio (Requiem.) MOZART ...

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", Morning Post (4 April 1829), 3

A Concert was given yesterday afternoon by the Pupils of the Academy, at the Hanover-square Rooms, which were filled with an elegant and fashionable audience . . . Two full chorusses were beautifully performed. Mr. MUDIE on the pianoforte, Misses DUFF, SEGUIN, and BROMLEY, Messrs. SAPIO, SEGUIN, and RANKIN, in the vocal department, acquitted themselves to the entire satisfaction of the numerous audience.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", Morning Post (6 June 1829), 3

A Concert by the Pupils was given at the Hanover-square Rooms yesterday morning, before a very numerous audience . . . The celebrated duet, Giorno d'orrore, was sung by Miss CHILDE and Miss DUFF, the former of whom acquitted herself very satisfactory. Miss DUFF was not so successful as we have usually heard her . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY", Morning Post (2 July 1829), 3

The last Concert for the season was given hy the Pupils yesterday morning at the Hanover-square Rooms, which were completely filled by an elegant and fashionable audience . . . Miss BELLCHAMBERS's air from Otello, a duet by Miss DUFF and Mr. A. SAPIO, another by Miss BROMLEY and Miss WILLIAMS, and the finale to Marie Stuart, by the principal singers, with chorus, gave complete satisfaction to the audience . . . At the conclusion of the Concert, a gratifying report of the progress of the pupils in general was read by Sir Gore Ouseley; after which followed the very interesting ceremony of conferring the annual prizes. The Princess Augusta honoured the Concert with her presence for the express purpose of distributing them. The following are the names of the pupils who received on this occasion prizes of medals or books: - Misses E. Childe, Williams, Bromley, North, Prescott, Brewer, and Hardy; Messrs. Seymour, White, E. Seguin, Daniell, Devaux, F. Smith, and Hopgood.

[Advertisement], Morning Advertiser (2 March 1833), 3

THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY LANE. THIS EVENING (Saturday), March 2, will be performed DON JUAN. Don Juan, Mr. Braham; Don Octavio, Mr. Templeton; Don Pedro, Mr. Bedford; Masetto, Mr. Seguin; Leporello, Mr. Martyn; Donna Anna, Miss Duff; Dona Elrira, Miss Betts; and Zerlina, Mrs. Wood. After which, THE SLEEPING BEAUTY . . .

"DRURY LANE THEATRE", London Evening Standard (4 March 1833), 1

On Saturday evening, in consequence of Madame de Meric's services being required at the King's Theatre, a young lady, named Miss Duff, was brought forward by the management of Drury Lane for the purpose of supplying her place as Donna Anna in the opera of Don Juan. At any time such undertaking would be considered an arduous one, but under the peculiar circumstances of the case it was an effort attended with extraordinary difficulty to the fair debutante. Quite unused to a theatre, and wanting that confidence in her own exertions which familiarity with its duties will bestow, she was, as we have heard, obliged to make her first appearance before the public with but three days allowed her to study the very difficult music of the part, and after only oue rehearsal. When she first came on the stage, in the scene where she is observed following Don Juan from the house and endeavouring to discover who he is, she was very favourably received, and she executed some passages in the recitative "Ah! del padre!" and in her duet with Templeton, "Fuggi, crudele, fuggi," with remarkable sweetness. Occasional inaccuracies were visible, but they seemed to arise mainly from timidity. She went through the quartette "Non ti fidar" tolerably well; but in the grand scena which follows soon after, where she describes to Don Octavio the clandestine visit of Don Juan to her chamber, her imperfect knowledge of the part became too visible to escape notice. As she proceeded she seemed to become more and more aware of tbe difficulties of the task she had undertaken - she grew frightened - her memory failed her, and she attempted to get nearer the prompt side, while the prompter's voice was audible in every part of the house. Mr. Templeton, who was the only person the stage, seemed to afford her every assistance his power; but her terror appeared take away from her all power of utterance. At last she stopped, the orchestra discontinued their labours, and she stood trembling, and quite unable proceed. Although few in the theatre could have beeu aware of the disadvantages under which she appeared before them, the audience, with a generous sympathy much to their credit, attempted to encourage her by loud and general applause. She appeared deeply affected with liberal treatment she had received, and expressed her gratitude repeated curtsies. The band then commenced the aria "Or si chi l'onore," which concludes the recitative, and, gaining confidence as she proceeded, she went through it vety satisfactorily, and was rewarded tbe conclusion with a most flattering testimony of the approbation of her hearers. She then got through the rest of the part in highly creditable style.

It would be unjust to give an opinion upon her merits as a singer from so imperfect a specimen of her abilities, yet we could perceive that she possesses decided talent, improved by careful tuition. Miss Duff is about 22 years age; her features are prepossessing, and her person graceful; her action is appropriate, and appears to derived I from the Italian school.

"DRURY LANE", The Globe (4 March 1833), 3

In consequence of the unavoidable absence of De Meric at the King's Thearte, and the desire of the management not to intarupt the extraordinary success of Don Juan, which, with the combined attraction of La belle aux bois dormant, nightly crowds the house, Miss Duff performed the part of Dona Anna on Saturday night. The young lady (she is about 22) had to appear under many disadvantages, having had only three days to study the music, and one rehearsal; and, in consquence, she was ratner imperfect, but the audience, in a spirit of kindness, allowed for the deficiencies that were apparent. She got through the part, however, in a manner that we should call decidedly well, and when she has had more practice in it, will be an acquisition to the establishment. It would be unjust to criticise her performance under these circumstances too harshly.

[Adverisement], Morning Post (5 March 1833), 3

THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY-LANE. Great attraction for This Evening. The continued overflows to the joint performance of DON JUAN and the New BALLET induce tbe Lessee, notwithstanding the unprecedented expense attendant upou their production, to announce them together again THIS EVENING. THIS EVENING will be acted Mozart's Grand Opera of DON JUAN. Don Juan, Mr. Braham - Donna Anna, Miss Duff. To which will be added the Fairy Ballet entitled THE SLEEPING BEAUTY. Gannelor, Monsieur Gilbert - Princess Iseult, Mdlle. Duvernay.

Marriages solemnized in the Parish of St. Andrew, Holborn . . . in the Year 1833; register 1832-37, page 153

George Rust of this Parish, Bachelor, and Margaret Duff, of the Parish of Saint George, Bloomsbury . . . Spinster were married in this Church by Licnese this sixteenth Day of September in the Year [1833] . . . in the Presence of Joseph Barnard, Geo. Hicks.

"MARRIED", Chelmsford Chronicle (4 October 1833), 3

Lately, Mr. George Rust, eldest son of Mr. Wm. Rust, ot Great Waltham, to Miss Duff.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (20 April 1835), 3

"MR. STUBBS'S CONCERT", The Australian (24 April 1835), 2

"THE CONCERT", The Sydney Herald (23 April 1835), 2

[News], The Australian (10 July 1835), 2

"DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE", The Sydney Herald (21 September 1835), 3

"Domestic and Miscellaneous Intelligence", The Australian (22 September 1835), 2

Jane Mitchell Rust, born 3 January 1836; baptsied, St. James's, Sydney, NSW, 26 January 1836

"BIRTH", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 January 1836), 3

"ROMAN CATHOLIC CEREMONIES", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (5 April 1836), 2

"DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE", The Australian (24 May 1836), 2

The admirers of sacred music had a rich treat in the service at St. Mary's church last Sunday, the whole of which, we believe, was under the superintendence of the Rev. Mr. Spencer, who displayed great taste in his selection of the music. Part of the mass was from Magginghi [Mazzinghi], which was peculiarly pretty, and part from that splendid composer Mozart. Mrs. Rust sang two beautiful solos, one "Ave verum," arranged by Myren [?], and the "Agnus Dei," from Mozart, which she executed with her usual brilliancy and feeling. The offertory was extremely beautiful, the treble by Mrs. Rust, the tenor by Mr. [Francis] Clarke, and the bass by Mr. Bushell. We have never heard this gentleman before - his voice is a very fine bass, and he sung the last mentioned piece in admirable style. We also observed Mr. Deane and Mr. Wallace in the choir, who added their valuable assistance. Mr. Cavendish presided scientifically at the Seraphine. We observed a great number of Protestant ladies and gentlemen in the body of the Church, which was crowded in every part.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 September 1836), 1

"THE ORATORIO", The Colonist (29 September 1836), 2

DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE", The Sydney Herald (20 September 1839), 2

"A brief Chronicle of Passing Events", Australasian Chronicle (24 September 1839), 1

"THE MUSICAL WORLD", The Colonist (25 September 1839), 2

... there has been some talk in the papers of Mrs. Rust giving a Concert, in which she was to be assisted by the vocal powers of Mr. Rust himself. This we have the best authority for saying is a gratuitous invention either of the papers or their informants, originating probably with some over-zealous and imprudent admirers of Mrs. R.'s distinguished talent as a vocalist. There was a day when Mrs. R. was more in the musical world than she had been of late, and when she would not perhaps have refused to fulfil the expectations of her friends by getting up a Concert; but Mrs. Rust and her husband are now in independent circumstances, and are not to be expected to engage in any such public entertainments. As for Mr. Rusts assisting on such an occasion, why the gentleman's vocal powers have been employed for a good while back rather in the way of hallooing after cattle through the bush, than in "breathing the soul of melody and song". We should indeed be happy if Mrs. Rust could be persuaded, and would condescend to gratify the wishes of her admirers, either by singing at some respectable Concert, or at one got up according to her own legitimate taste, by herself.

William Wright Rust, born 30 October 1840, baptised, St. Phillip's, Sydney, NSW, 18 November 1840

BDM NSW 120/1840 V1840120 24A

Died, Margaret Rust, aged 35

"DEATH", The Sydney Herald (21 November 1840), 2

On Thursday night last Margaret, the beloved wife of George Rust Esq., sincerely regretted.


... I never heard anything like it [Joseph Reichenberg's catholic choir, Sydney, c.1825] except once, that was the day on which our venerated Archbishop [Polding] first landed in Sydney. On that occasion Dr. Ullathorne, now Bishop of Birmingham, had made every preparation for a grand High Mass, and poor Cavendish (who was drowned with his sister off Bradley's Head in after years) had charge of the choir; he exerted himself to the utmost and secured the assistance of a great cantratrice (Mrs. Rust) who happened to be in the colony at the time. Mr. Clarke the architect, who was a fine singer, also lent his aid, and these with the assistance of the regular choristers quite astonished the Bishop. Dr. Polding was only bishop, at that and he did not expect to hear Mozart's [Twelfth] Mass sung in Botany Bay, and well sung too ...

Bibliography and resources:

William W. Cazalet, The history of the Royal Academy of Music compiled from authentic sources (London: T. Bosworth, 1854), 220-21

Monthly Concert, 6th September, 1828 ... Aria. "Oh! cara Memoria". Miss Duff - Rossini ... Sestetto. "Sola! Sola!" Misses Bellchambers, Duff, and Bromley; Messrs. Hodges, E. Seguin, and A. Sapio. ("II Don Giovanni") - Mozart ...

"STORY OF OLD ST. MARY'S", Freeman's Journal (5 June 1913), 22 

... Early in 1834 the church was described as partly roofed and "safe against the inclemency of the weather." Though without altar and benches, still the building was practically finished, and in 1835 Dr. Polding was in stalled as Bishop in St. Mary's on the 20th September. For the first time High Mass was sung in Australia, and for the first time the congregation was blessed by a Bishop. There was a choir on this occasion, led by Mrs. Rust ...

McGuanne 1915 

RUTTER, George Oswald (1822-1884)

Amateur vocalist, conductor, composer, barrister

Go to main page:

RUXTON, Henri William (Henri W. RUXTON; H. W. RUXTON)

Professor of Music, musicseller, government singing master

Active, Melbourne, VIC, by August 1854
Died Ballarat, VIC, 8 March 1899 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Henri W. Ruxton, late member of the Philharmonic Society, Liverpool, pupil of Henri Rosellen, and Balsir Chatterton, Harpist to the Queen, first advertised in Melbourne in August in 1853.


"COUNTY COURT", Liverpool Mercury [England] (12 October 1852), 3

RUXTON V. ROYLE. - This was an action to recover the sum of £6 l6s. for tuition in music, received by the defendant's wife and daughter ... When the agreement was first made the defendant lived in Falkuer-street. The terms fixed upon were £1 l0s. for the first quarter, and a guinea for the second, the lessons to be given at the defendant's own house. Defendant some time afterwards removed to Fairfield, where the plaintiff gave two lessons a week for 26 weeks. The plaintiff's daughter was also engaged to teach Miss Royle, at the rate of 16s. a quarter. After the defendant removed to Fairfield the plaintiff attended regularly, but Mrs. Royle left orders with her servant that it was no use to attend, as the plaintiff had not been able to teach her anything; and that her daughter had been sent to another school. Mr. Royle had agreed to pay for his daughter's tuition, but would not agree to pay for that of his wife, he saying she should pay for it out of her own pocket money. His honour gave a verdict for the full amount, observing that, as Mr. Royle did not appear to be blameable in this matter, although the defence set up was somewhat discreditable to the wife of the defendant, he would grant a month for payment.

RUXTON V. LYTHGOE. - An action to recover £11 15s. for musical tuition. The account extended from January 1849, to December last, up to which period £4 15s. had been paid. A verdict was given for the remaining amount, without costs, his honour observing that through the non-attendance of Mr. Ruxton the time of the court and the public had been unnecessarily occupied, one hour having been wasted on a case which ought only to have occupied five minutes.

[Advertisement], The Argus (1 August 1853), 3 

MUSICAL Tuition. - Mr. H. W. Ruxton, Professor of Music, late member of Philharmonic Society, Liverpool, pupil of J. B. Chatterton (harpist to the Queen), and of Henri Rossellen (the celebrated pianist), begs respectfully to state that he has commenced giving lessons on the Pianoforte, Harp, Organ, and Singing, each of which he has successfully taught in Liverpool for the last eight years, and trusts that the inhabitants of Melbourne will favor him with a share of their support. For terms, references, &c., apply to Mr. J. Wilkie, Music-seller, Collins-street.

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 February 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 April 1854), 6

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 November 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 September 1855), 7

"MARRIED", The Argus (29 January 1856), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 March 1857), 8

"PASSING OF AN OLD RESIDENT", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (7 February 1865), 2

We yesterday had the pleasure of learning that Mr. Henri W. Ruxton, so long known as a professed pianist and teacher of music in the Ovens district, has returned from Melbourne after creditably passing an examination which has obtained for him a certificate from the Board of Education entitling him to act as singing master in any of the common schools in the colony. We congratulate Mr. Ruxton on his success.

"Deaths", The Ballarat Star (9 March 1899), 2 

"DEATHS", The Argus (16 October 1930), 1

"OBITUARY NOTICES", The Ballarat Star (11 March 1899), 4 

The remains of the late Mr. Henri W. Ruxton, who for many years officiated as Government singing master, were interred yesterday afternoon at the New Cemetery ...

Bibliography and resources:

Hallo 2014, 80, 136, 140, 202 ["Buxton", sic] (DIGITISED)

RYALL, John James (junior)

Pianist, vocalist, professor of the pianoforte, harmonium, and singing

Born Hastings, England, c. 1832
Active Sydney, NSW, by ? c. 1857
Died Marrickville, NSW, 2 April 1914, aged 82 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

RYALL, Florence (Mrs. E. Lewis SCOTT)


Active Sydney, NSW, by 1869 (sister of the above; pupil of Ugo DEVOTI)


J. J. Ryall, professor of music and pianist, and his sister, the vocalist, Miss Florence Ryall were children of John James Ryall senior (d. Cooma, 1886), a medical practitioner and coroner. John junior was probably the Ryall appearing in the company at the Royal Victoria Theatre, Sydney, in 1855.


? [Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (3 March 1855), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 April 1858), 1 

TOGOOD'S GRAND SALOON - Admission Free. - Is acknowledged to be one of those places where gentlemen can really wile away a pleasant hour. The artistes are well known, and are continually amusing by an endless variety of music, both vocal and instrumental. Mr. Byall [sic], one of the well-known pianists of this city, engaged by Madame Anna Bishop, during the late opera season, is amongst the engagements this week, with the following artistes - Miss M. Buckingham, Madame Josephine, Mr. H. O. Thompson, Mr. Albert Ritch, Mr. Picolomi, Mr. Webster, Mr. Smith, Mr. G. H. Buckingham, Miss Buckingham, Master W. Buckingham, Master C. Buckingham, Master H. Buckingham, Master A. Buckingham. Come and hear the "Life Boat," "Blue-tail Fly," "Death of Nelson," "Timothy Black," "Muffins and Crumpets Hot," "When a Little Farm," "Digger and Chinaman," with an endless variety of songs, duets, glees, choruses, &c; During the week Mr. G. H. Buckingham will sing "Alonso ye Brave," "Forty Thieves," "Cinderella," "Corsican Brothers," and "Blue Beard."

"MUSICAL SOIREE", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 April 1860), 5

[Advertisement], "YOUNGE'S ATHENAEUM", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 March 1863), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (2 August 1865), 1

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (21 August 1865), 3

"MUSWELLBROOK. DRAWING-ROOM ENTERTAINMENT", The Maitland Mercury (20 October 1866), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 December 1869), 8

"THEATRICALS", Bell's Life in Sydney (11 June 1870), 3

"ADVANCE AUSTRALIA MUSIC CLUB", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 March 1873), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 September 1872), 4

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 December 1873), 1

"Musical Gossip. THE LATE MR. RYALL", Evening News (11 April 1914), 13 

Mr. John James Ryall, one of the oldest identities in Sydney musical circles, died last week at the age of 82. He was a native of Hastings, England, and arrived here in the early fifties. He was an organist and conductor of considerable ability, having held positions at the temporary cathedral of St. Andrew, which stood on the site of the Town Hall, St. Barnabas' Church, St. Thomas', North Sydney, and St. Francis' R. C. Church, Haymarket and was for many years grand organist of the Masonic Lodge. Mrs. E. Lewis Scott, who was at one time known as Miss Florence Ryall, a mezzo-soprano concert soloist, is a sister of the deceaeed musician.

RYAN, Miss

Mezzo-soprano, contralto vocalist

Active Sydney, NSW, 1859-62


An amateur, and pupil of Mrs. Bridson, Ryan made her first appearance at T. V. Bridson's Concert for the People in November 1859. Her short public career, during which she often sang beside Sara Flower and for the Orpheonist Society, appears to have come to an abrupt end in June 1862.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 November 1859), 1

"CONCERTS FOR THE PEOPLE", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 November 1859), 5

[Advertisement], Empire (14 January 1860), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 May 1861), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 January 1862), 1

"SECOND CONCERT OF THE ORPHEONIST SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 January 1862), 4

? [Funeral notice], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 June 1862), 8

"ORPHEONIST SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 June 1862), 4

We are requested to state that in consequence of a severe domestic calamity, Miss Ryan did not take part in the society's concert on Thursday evening.

RYAN, Timothy

Musician, violinist, pub fiddler

Active Sydney, NSW, 1853


"GREAT OUTRAGE", Empire (5 April 1853), 2 


Nine persons were in custody on suspicion of being either the actual murderers of the deceased, or participators in the fray wherein he met his death. Their names are Maurice Malsh, landlord of the Beehive, public-house, in Campbell-street, near the Haymarket; Bridget Maria Walsh, wife of the former prisoner; a musician named Timothy Ryan, and some labouring men ...

"WILFUL MURDER", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 April 1853), 2

This was the case against the prisoners; and Mr. Johnson agreed that he had not adduced any evidence against Hopkins, the cook; and after some remarks from Mr. Nichols, as to there being no evidence against Ryan, who was playing the fiddle when the affray began, and who had run away before the police arrived, the Coroner directed that these two men should be remanded under their former warrant to the custody of the police, with the view to their legal discharge out of custody.

"DISCHARGE", Empire (16 April 1853), 2 

"THE POLICE REGISTER. FIRST FIDDLE", Bell's Life in Sydney and Sporting Reviewer (5 November 1853), 2 

Tim Ryan, a second Paganini, whose cat-gut scraper attracts the lovers of melody in their nocturnal promenades by the public houses of Brickfield Hill, was "pulled" by a female, named Maria Williams, who had evidently been a beauty some forty or fifty years ago ...

RYDER, George Hopwood

Amateur musician, violinist, viola player, cellist, solicitor

Active Melbourne, VIC, by early 1850s
Died Toorak, VIC, 29 December 1895, aged (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Argus (15 July 1858), 8 

"MISKA HAUSER", The Argus (16 July 1858), 4 

"OBITUARY", Prahran Chronicle (4 January 1896), 3 

Last Sunday there passed away at his late residence, Wallace-street, Toorak, a gentleman whose connection with the musical world is well worthy of record. Mr. G. H. Ryder arrived in Melbourne early in the fifties, and as a violinist became associated with the various excellent orchestras in existence at that period. From its inception he was a valued member of the Philharmonic Society, also leader of the Melbourne Amateur Orchestral Society from the beginning, some twenty-five or thirty years' ago, and, the honored recipient of the Royal Metropolitan Liedertafel's golden Lyre. His experience of conductors was wide, ranging from Mendelsohn in Birmingham, to all of note who had visited and those who are located in the colony. Being possessed of a vast fund of musical knowledge he was thoroughly familiar with the works of all the great masters. As a member of the Musical Artists' Society he took part in chamber music on many occasions at their meetings. The old identities in music are fast disappearing there being only a few remaining. But none were more successful in gaining the esteem and respect of all whom he came in contact with than the late Mr. Ryder, who was undoubtedly a gentleman in every sense of the word. It was the writer's privilege to hear him on several occasions relate some of those interesting experiences met with in the life of most musicians resident here from the early days, and it is a matter of regret that such experiences are not collected and put into print before the means of obtaining them pass on for ever.

RYDER, Joseph

Teacher of singing on the Hullah system

Born ? 1815/16
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 26 December 1849 (per Asiatic, from London and Plymouth)
Died Glenelg, SA, 23 October 1892, aged 76 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"ARRIVED", South Australian Register (29 December 1849), 2

"LOCAL INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (9 January 1850), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian (17 January 1851), 1

"HULLAH'S SYSTEM OF MUSIC", South Australian Register (31 May 1851), 3

"DEATHS", South Australian Register (24 October 1892), 4

A. T. Saunders, "ANOTHER COLONIST OF 1849", The Register (1 July 1926), 6 

[a long and detailed account of great interest, only a short extract here] ... a book was lent to me containing the reminiscences in writing of a steerage passenger by that ship which, as Mr. Williams came in the saloon, with every comfort, gives both sides of the voyage. The writer is Mr. J. Ryder, who for some years lived in Nairne, and was the first clerk of that district council. The father of Mr. Ryder was a shoemaker in the parish of Upton cum Chalvey, Bucks, England, when, on July 31, 1816, the writer was born, his mother being a Devon woman named Bond, who was brought to Windsor at an early age. Mr. Ryder (the writer) was the youngest of a family of seven. The father was originally a farm labourer, but seems to have been an intelligent and enterprising man, although he had no schooling. ... When the writer was about two the family removed from Chalvey to Windsor, and the first thing the writer could remember was the tolling of the Windsor Castle bell at midnight, announcing the death of George III. When he was seven years old he went to a school, the master of which was a competent but cruel nan. At 14 he was apprenticed till his twenty first birthday to a master tailor, Richard Cobden, Thames street, Windsor. Mr. Cobden was first cousin to the renowned Freetrader of the same name. In October, 1838, Ryder married, after considerable difficulty, a young woman named Hill, for the young couple were dissenters, and many legal obstacles were then (as in South Australia for many years) put in the way of dissenters who desired to be married by their own ministers. The writer worked at his trade, and the wife worked as milliner and dressmaker, largely or the upper servants of Windsor Castle. In 1842 Ryder applied for admittance into the British and Foreign School Society's Training College, London, and after a stiff training for several months, passed, and was appointed to a school in North Wales in December, 1842, and arrived there early in 1843. He had studied vocal music, and started a class on the Hullah system, which was a success. Some friction with a local magnate caused Mr. Ryder to resign, and after a short holiday at Windsor with his wife and family, he went to Lancaster, having been appointed head master of the British school there at £90 a year, which he supplemented by a Hullah singing class, and by doing clerical work for a Lancaster shipowner. Mrs. Ryder and their three children were then brought to Lancaster, where they remained for about four years, when, as the climate of Lancaster did not suit Mr. Ryder, he obtained charge of the British school at King's Lynn, Norfolk. The school secretary at Lynn was a Mr. Wigg, a relative of the Wigg family, of Adelaide, and Mr. Wigg, on Good Friday, 1849, suggested migration to South Australia, as in his opinion the climate of Lynn would be fatal to Mr. Ryder. Ultimately, Mr. Ryder and his wife decided to go to Adelaide, but how was the question. He applied, to be sent as a free emigrant, but was refused, as he had too many, young children, and then applied to be sent as schoolmaster in an emigrant ship, but there were so many on the list before him that he could not wait. Mr. Wigg and others then assisted Mr. Ryder to raise £80 for the cost of a steerage passage for him, his wife, and their four children. The family left Lynn on Saturday, 24/8/1849, for London, and on the following Sunday they went on board the Asiatic in the East India Docks, which next day went to Gravesend, where a terrible event happened. A fellow passenger at breakfast was suddenly seized with cholera, which was raging in London. The face and hands of the poor man turned a ghastly blue; he was in great agony and fearfully convulsed, and died at 4 p.m. His body was taken ashore for burial. Dr. Maurau, the ship's surgeon, decided that the case was English cholera, and the Asiatic sailed ... They sighted Kangaroo Island on 24/12/1841, arrived at the lightship at noon of 20/12/1849, and went to Port Adelaide on the same evening ...

RYLEY, Charles

Baritone vocalist

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, August 1890
Died London, England, 14 May 1897



"PASSENGERS BY THE BRITANNIA", South Australian Register (5 August 1890), 4

Mr Charles Ryley was a passenger by the P. & O. Britannia on Monday. Mr. Ryley comes out to Australia under engagement to Messrs. Williamson & Garner to take a prominent part in the "Gondoliers" and other operas. He is a baritone singer of some repute, and has lately been singing at the Lyric in London.

"THE PICTORIAL", The Australasian (30 June 1894), 32

"THE LATE MR. CHARLES RYLEY", Chronicle (29 May 1897), 46

THE LATE MR. CHARLES RYLEY. Mr. Charles Ryley was probably one of the best of baritone singers who has visited Australia, and the intelligence of his death, which occurred in London last week, will have been received with widespread regret. He first appeared at the Princess's Theatre in Melbourne in 1890, and speedily gained a high place is public esteem, the quality of his voice and his ability as an actor being exceptional. His last appearance in Australia was with the Gaiety Girl Company.

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