Thomas Arne

English composer Thomas Augustine Arne was born into a family of Catholic upholsterers in Covent Garden, London on 12 March 1710 and studied at Eton College. Arne became friends with the violinist and composer Michael Festing, who became a big influence, but he began his career working for a solicitor before his father was later persuaded to allow him to study music.

Arne wrote about ninety stage works, mostly now lost, between 1773 and 1776. He was also an active Freemason, and one of the first composers to seek legal help with copyright issues.

He worked in Dublin for two years, and later worked as leader of the band at Drury Lane Theatre, as composer at Vauxhall Gardens, and later at Covent Garden Theatre.

Thomas Arne died in London on 5 March 1778, aged sixty-seven, and was buried at St Paul's Church, Covent Garden. His son Michael Arne was also a composer.


A selection of articles about Thomas Arne

Spotlight. Consistently Transparent - Gerald Fenech listens to organ concertos by Arne. '... a vibrant energy ...'

Ensemble. Me and my Aunts - A Shakespeare celebration, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Nostalgic and Enthralling - A Joan Sutherland portrait, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... a fitting tribute to the singing legend from Australia ...'

CD Spotlight. A Superb Work - Thomas Arne's 'Artaxerxes', heard by Robert Anderson. 'Roy Goodman and his team give their all ...'

CD Spotlight. Highly Challenging - Music for unaccompanied violin, heard by Howard Smith. '... searching performance ...'

CD Spotlight. A Glistening Treasury - Songs with orchestra from Deborah Riedel, enjoyed by Howard Smith. '... a bounteous seam of unfamiliar, wholly blissful vocal gems ...'