Edward Alexander MacDowell (December 18, 1860 – January 23, 1908) was an American composer and pianist of the late Romantic period. He was best known for his second piano concerto and his piano suites Woodland Sketches, Sea Pieces and New England Idylls. Woodland Sketches includes his most popular short piece, "To a Wild Rose". In 1904 he was one of the first seven Americans honored by membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
He was born in New York City and studied at the Paris Conservatory and Dr. Hoch's Conservatory in Frankfurt. Liszt was an admirer . He was appointed professor at Columbia University in NYC, where his task was to "create a music department." He was often stressed with his work at Columbia, ahd resigned abruptly.
In 1904 he was one of the first seven Americans honored by membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
He was subject to depression, which increased severely, and his final illness began when he was run over by a hansom cab in NYC in 1904. Of his final years, Lawrence Gilman, a contemporary, described: "His mind became as that of a little child..."
As it will soon to be time to bring my "Summertime Series" to a close, I wanted to "end" with some of MacDowell's miniature masterpieces.
"By smouldering embers," is part of the "Fireside Tales," first published in 1902. The melodies and harmonies are subdued, buy still rich and flowing.
The fine and sensitive transcription was done by C. Charlton Palmer (1871-1944), whose distinguished career culminated in his appointment as organist of Canterbury Cathedral.
There are two volumes of these transcriptions, both published by Arthur P. Schmidt, Boston. These three uploads today complete the 2 sets of transcriptions.
The score is attached below, as well as several photos of Edward MacDowell, his signature, his memorial plaque, and one photo of C. Charlton Palmer.