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Albert Coates (Conductor)

Born: 23rd April 1882, St. Petersburg

Died: 11th December 1953, South Africa

Nationality: English

Albert Coates was an English conductor and composer. Born in Saint Petersburg, where his English father was a successful businessman, he studied in Russia, England and Germany, before beginning his career as a conductor in a series of German opera houses. He was a success in England conducting Wagner at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1914, and in 1919 was appointed chief conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.

His strengths as a conductor lay in opera and the Russian repertory, but he was not thought as impressive in the core Austro-German symphonic repertory. After 1923 he failed to secure a permanent conductorship in the UK, and for much of the rest of his life guest-conducted in continental Europe and the US. In his last years he conducted in South Africa, where he died at 71.

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