This is a biography of a composer whose music is rooted in the tradition of Elgar, Parry, Vaughan Williams and those composers in the opening decades of the 20th century for whom song writing was a principal means of expression. Finzi is now seen as he may have seen himself - as an artist whose limitations were innate and whose pastoral or provincial lifestyle and aspirations would reflect those limitations whilst somehow invalidating them.
Stephen Banfield is currently Stanley Hugh Badock Professor of Music at the University of Bristol. From 1992 to 2003 he was Elgar Professor of Music at the University of Birmingham. His highly acclaimed biography of Gerald Finzi was published by Faber in 1997, and he is also the author of Sensibility and English Song, Sondheim's Broadway Musicals and editor of the twentieth-century volume of The Blackwell History of Music in Britain