Faà di Bruno, Giovanni Matteo [Horatio, Orazio] 83

Foord, Thomas. See Ford, Thomas. Foort, Reginald

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Foord, Thomas.

See Ford, Thomas.

Foort, Reginald

(b Daventry, 21 Jan 1893; d California, 22 May 1980). English organist. He studied the organ with Parratt at the RCM and was appointed organist and choirmaster at St Mary’s, Bryanston Square, in 1911, gaining the FRCO the same year. His theatre organ career began in Edinburgh in 1925 and he made his cinema début in 1926 at the New Gallery Cinema in London. He went on to become resident organist at many leading theatres. Foort was the first to broadcast on a Wurlitzer organ in Britain, and in 1936 became the first BBC staff theatre organist. He left the post after two years to tour vaudeville theatres with a 30-ton, five-manual pipe organ which became BBC Theatre Organ no.2 after World War II. In 1951 Foort went to live in America, where he remained for the rest of his life, becoming organist of Temple Sholom in Chicago and then of a temple in Miami. His recording output was immense, and he is best remembered for his transcriptions of well-known classical and light orchestral music on the theatre organ. He wrote The Cinema Organ (London, 1932) and composed several pieces in the lighter idiom.


Foot (i).

A section of a verse, usually of two or three syllables, one of which carries the ictus or principal stress. For example, an unaccented (or short) followed by an accented (or long) syllable (-) comprises an iambic foot.


Foot (ii).

In organ building, Eight foot (8'), Sixteen foot (16'), Four foot (4'), Two foot (2') and so on are used to differentiate stops that sound at written pitch from those that sound at higher or lower octaves or even at other intervals. The terminology derives from the fact that an open organ pipe sounding c will be approximately eight feet (2·4m) long (the other pipes of the same stop, will, of course, be different lengths). Thus an 8' stop sounds at written pitch, a 16' stop an octave lower, a 4' stop an octave higher, a 2' stop two octaves higher and so on. In a 22/3' stop, depressing the c key will sound a pipe one-third as long as normal (22/3' being one-third of 8), i.e. a 12th above the written pitch, or g', the third partial. Similarly, a 13/5' stop sounds two octaves and a 3rd above written pitch (e'' when the c key is depressed); a 31/5' stop one octave and a 3rd above (e' for c); a 51/3' stop a 5th above written pitch (g for c); and so on. By extension this terminology can be used to distinguish one octave from another (hence, 4' octave, 8' octave, and so on).

The terminology is also used by analogy to describe harpsichord registration: a unison set of strings is also called an ‘8' stop’ (whatever the actual length of the strings might be), an octave set a ‘4' stop’ and a sub-unison set a ‘16' stop’.

Italian organ builders do not refer to feet but instead count diatonic scale degrees from the fundamental. Thus a 22/3' stop is called in Italian ‘alla duodecima’ (at the 12th).

See also Registration.


Foot (iii).

The part (usually the lowest) of an organ flue pipe below the mouth; it supports the pipe and conveys wind received in the toe-hole from the Wind-chest and directs it via the Windway to the flue. The corresponding part of a reed pipe is known as the Boot.


Foote, Arthur (William)

(b Salem, MA, 5 March 1853; d Boston, 8 April 1937). American composer, organist, pianist and teacher. He began his study of music at the age of 12 with Fanny Paine, a local piano teacher. After two years she took him to play for the Boston musician B.J. Lang, on whose advice he enrolled in Stephen A. Emery's harmony class at the New England Conservatory. In 1870 he entered Harvard College, where he studied counterpoint and fugue with John Knowles Paine; he also led the Harvard Glee Club in the two years before his graduation in 1874. That summer he began organ lessons with Lang, who was so encouraging that Foote decided on a career in music rather than law. He returned to Harvard for another year’s work with Paine and in 1875 received the first MA in music to be given by an American university. He made eight trips abroad over a 20-year period, beginning with the first Bayreuth Festival in 1876; he also took a few lessons with Stephen Heller in France in 1883.

On his graduation from Harvard Foote opened a teaching studio on Beacon Hill in Boston next door to the Harvard Musical Association, an organization in which he was active all his life. In 1876 he made his piano recital début in Boston and was appointed organist at the Church of the Disciples, moving two years later to the First Unitarian Church, a post he retained until 1910. He introduced a series of chamber music concerts in Boston in 1880 and was active as a piano recitalist until around 1895. He married Kate Grant Knowlton in 1880; their only daughter, Katharine, was born in 1881.

Foote’s first compositions were three pieces for cello and piano op.1, and a set of three piano pieces op.3, both of which were published in 1882 by Arthur P. Schmidt of Boston, the firm which became virtually the sole agent for his music. Foote composed steadily for 45 years, publishing his last numbered work (op.80) in 1919. Of his entire output, only 42 works were not published. He arranged and edited many piano pieces for Schmidt, often using the pseudonyms Ferdinand Meyer and Carl Erich. Most of his major orchestral works were given their premières by the Boston SO, and the Kneisel Quartet gave several first performances of the chamber works.

In his finest works Foote was a memorable composer. His style, firmly placed in the Romantic tradition, is characterized by lyrical melodies, expressive phrasing, and clear formal structure. He excelled in writing for strings and achieved particular popularity in his lifetime with the Suite in E major op.63 and A Night Piece for flute and strings. Of his works for full orchestra, the Four Character Pieces after the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám op.48 is noteworthy for its colourful instrumental writing. His strong melodic gift is exemplified in such songs as I’m wearing awa’ and An Irish Folk Song.

Foote was highly regarded as a pedagogue, earning his livelihood mainly from private piano instruction. He was guest lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley, during the summer of 1911, and from 1921 until his death in 1937 taught piano at the New England Conservatory. With Walter R. Spalding as joint author, Foote wrote a popular theory text, Modern Harmony in its Theory and Practice (1905/R). He wrote two other short manuals, Some Practical Things in Piano Playing (1909) and Modulation and Related Harmonic Questions (1919/R), many journal articles, and An Autobiography (1946/R). He was one of the founding members of the American Guild of Organists and its national president from 1909 to 1912, and was active in the Music Teachers National Association during its early years. He was elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1898, to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1913, and received honorary doctorates from Trinity College and Dartmouth College.


Edition:Arthur Foote: Music for Cello and Piano, ed. D.B. Moore, RRAM, viii (1982) [M]Catalogue:W.R. Cipolla: A Catalog of the Work of Arthur Foote (1853–1937) (Detroit, 1980)

(printed works published in Boston unless otherwise stated)




In the Mountains, ov., 1886, rev. 1910, US-Bp, NYp


Francesca da Rimini, sym. prol., 1890 (1892)


Serenade, str, 1891 (1892/R1983) [rev. of Suite op.12, Air and Intermezzo from Suite, D, op.21, 1889]


Cello Concerto, begun 1887 as op.16, completed 1893, NYp; 2nd movt, Romanza, arr. vc, pf (1908) [additional version in op.22, see instrumental]; M


Suite, d, 1894–5 (1896)


Four Character Pieces after the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, 1900 (1912) [rev. of pf pieces op.41]


Suite, E, str, 1907, rev. 1908 (1909/R1983)

A Night Piece, fl, str, 1922 (1934) [rev. of Nocturne, see instrumental]

chamber and solo instrumental


Three Pieces, vc, pf, 1881 (1882); M


String Quartet no.1, g, 1883 (1885)


Piano Trio no.1, c, 1882, rev. 1883 (1884)


Three Pieces, vn, pf, ?1885 (1886)


Sonata, vn, pf, g, 1889 (1890)


Romance and Scherzo, vc, pf, by 10 Dec 1890 [see also orchestral, op.33]; NYp; M


Piano Quartet, C, 1890 (1892)


Three Pieces, ob/fl, pf, ?1893 (Mainz, c1896)


String Quartet no.2, E, 1893; Bc, Bh; Tema con variazioni (1901)


Piano Quintet, a, 1897 (1898/R1984)


Melody, va, pf, ?1899 (1900) [also for va, vn]


Piano Trio no.2, B, 1907–8 (1909)


Ballade, f, vn, pf, ?1910 (1910)


String Quartet no.3, D, 1907–11 (London, 1911)


Two Pieces, vn, pf (1913)


Legend, vn, pf, ?1912–13, Bh


Aubade, vc, pf, 1912, Bh, American Academy of Arts and Letters, NY; M


Sonata, vc/va, pf, Bh; M

Nocturne and Scherzo, fl, str qt, 1918, Bc [Nocturne rev. as A Night Piece, see orchestral]

Sarabande and Rigaudon, ob/fl, va/vn, pf, 1921, Bh, American Academy of Arts and Letters, NY


18 opp., 13 unnumbered pieces, pf; 6 opp., 5 unnumbered pieces, org; 11 opp., 10 unnumbered unpubd works; arrs., pf



The Farewell of Hiawatha (H.W. Longfellow), male chorus, orch, 1885 (1886)


The Wreck of the Hesperus (Longfellow), chorus, orch, 1887–8 (1888)


The Skeleton in Armor (Longfellow), chorus, orch, 1891 (1892)


O fear the immortals, ye children of men (after J.W. von Goethe: Iphigenie in Tauris), recit and aria, Mez, orch, 1900, Bc


Lygeia (G. Rogers), female chorus, orch (1906)


100 songs (14 opp., others unnumbered, some unpubd), 52 partsongs, 35 anthems

MSS, letters and scrapbooks in US-Wc, Bp, Bc, Bh, NYp, R, PHf, CA, SA, WI, Chicago Symphony Orchestra Archives American Academy of Arts and Letters, NY


DAB (N. Slonimsky)





F.O. Robinson: ‘American Composers of To-Day’, The Musician, viii (1903), 20–21

W. Hascall: ‘Arthur Foote’, Music News, ii/7 (1909), 18–20

H.V. Milligan: ‘Organ Works of Arthur Foote’, The Diapason, x/5 (1919), 3

D.A. Clippinger: ‘The Songs of Arthur Foote’, Musical West, vi/1 (1928), 22

F. Jacobi: ‘Homage to Arthur Foote’, MM, xiv (1936–7), 198–9

Arthur Foote: a Concert of his Compositions and an Address by Moses Smith (Auburndale, MA, 1937) [pamphlet pubd by the American Institute of Normal Methods]

O. Downes: ‘Works of Arthur Foote’, New York Times (18 April 1937), §XI, p.5

A. Foote: ‘A Bostonian Remembers’, MQ, xxiii (1937), 37–44

H.C. Macdougall: Obituary, The Diapason, xxviii/6 (1936–7), 3

F. Kopp: Arthur Foote: American Composer and Theorist (diss., U. of Rochester, 1957)

D. Alviani: The Choral Church Music of Arthur William Foote (diss., Union Theological Seminary, 1962)

R. Smith: ‘American Organ Composers: Arthur Foote’, Music: the AGO and RCCO Magazine, x/5 (1976), 38 only

D. Moore: The Cello Music of Arthur Foote, 1853–1937 (diss., Catholic U., 1977)


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