Charles Tomlinson Griffes

Griffes, Charles Tomlinson (grĭfˈĭs) [key], 1884–1920, American composer, b. Elmira, N.Y. A pupil of Humperdinck in Germany, he returned to the United States in 1907. Among his outstanding larger compositions are The Pleasure-Dome of Kubla Khan (Boston, 1920), for orchestra; his Poem, for flute and orchestra (1918); and Roman Sketches (1915–16), for piano, which includes The White Peacock. His tautly intense piano sonata (1918, pub. 1921) represents his mature style, in which he was free from earlier influences of German romanticism and impressionism and created a uniquely American idiom.

See biography by E. M. Maisel (1943, repr. 1984).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.