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Category: William Hayman Cummings (1831 – 1915)
William Hayman Cummings (1831 – 1915) was born in Sidbury (near Sidmouth) in Devon, England. He was an English musician, tenor and organist at Waltham Abbey.
In 1847, as a teenager, he was one of the choristers when Felix Mendelssohn conducted his Elijah at Exeter Hall. He is credited in 1855 with linking [[Category:Felix Mendelssohn|Mendelssohn]’s tune to Charles Wesley’s words Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, which are now universally inextricably linked. He was the last-minute tenor soloist at the première of The Masque at Kenilworth (1866) by Arthur Sullivan.
Cummings founded the Purcell Society in 1876. He served as singing professor at the Royal Academy of Music for 15 years beginning in 1879, then became principal of the Guildhall School of Music. He received an honorary Doctorate in Music from Dublin University in 1900.