1915 - 1990
Pamela Harrison was born in Orpington (Kent) in 1915 and educated at the RCM 1932-1936, where she was much influenced by her Professor Gordon Jacob. She married the cellist Harvey Phillips in 1943 and had two sons, both having compositions written in their honour: A Suite For Timothy for strings (1948), often played and broadcast by the Harvey Phillips String Orchestra in the 1950s. A Present for Paul (1950) is a setting of eight poems of Walter de la Mare, one of several song cycles for tenor voice and piano and broadcast the year it was written. Others, The Dark Forest, Six poems of Edward Thomas and Six Poems of Baudelaire are written for Tenor and string orchestra. Other orchestral works include a Suite, a symphonic poem, Evocation of the Weald, a Concertante for piano and strings and Brimstone Down for small orchestra (1958).
Much of her work has been achieved in the sphere of chamber music. A Quintet for flute, oboe, violin, viola and cello and a String Quartet both appeared in 1944, a String Trio in 1945. These were quite short, the Quintet playing for fourteen minutes, the Trio for eleven. They were followed by a Woodwind Quartet (1948), a Clarinet Quintet (1956), a Piano Trio (1967) and a Quartet for flute, violin, cello and piano (1968). She has also written a considerable number of short pieces for solo instrument with piano: a Lament for viola, a Sonnet and other pieces for cello, Badinage for flute, Chase A Shadow for Oboe, Drifting Away for clarinet and Faggot Dance for bassoon and the six diversions entitled Anderida for piano solo all deriving inspiration from her native Kent. In fact it was her love of natural landscape that was the raison d’etre of many works. Writing for particular musical friends also gave her great pleasure and satisfaction.
Biography taken from composer’s website.