Nicholas Gatty

Nicholas Comyn Gatty (13 September 1874 – 10 November 1946) was an English composer and music critic. As a composer his major output was opera, which was generally musically undistinguished but well-presented theatrically. As a critic he worked for the Pall Mall Gazette and The Times, and served as assistant editor for the second and third editions of Grove.

He was born in Bradfield, Yorkshire, the second son of the Revd Reginald Gatty, and the nephew of composer Alfred Scott-Gatty. He was educated at Downing College, Cambridge (BA 1896, Mus B 1898, Mus D 1927) and at the Royal College of Music where he studied under Charles Villiers Stanford. From the beginning of the 20th century he was assistant conductor at Covent Garden, and at some time organist to the Duke of York's Royal Military School in Chelsea. At Grove's Dictionary of Music he wrote many anonymous contributions under the editors Fuller Maitland and H C Colles.

His compositions include the operas Prince Ferelon (1919) written to his own libretto, which won a Carnegie Award and was staged at the Old Vic in 1921, and The Tempest, (composed in 1914, with a libretto adapted by his brother Reginald Arthur Allix Gatty) which followed at the Old Vic in 1922. Edward Dent found in The Tempest "a wonderful Purcellian beauty". Gatty's orchestral Concert Allegro for piano and orchestra was premiered at the Proms on 6 October 1903 and his ambitious choral and orchestral work Fly, envious time (setting Milton's "Ode on Time") was commissioned for the 1905 Sheffield Festival. The Shropshire Songbook, folksong arrangements made by Gatty and Alan Gray, was published in 1922.

Gatty was a close contemporary and friend of Ralph Vaughan Williams, and from around 1900 the latter was to spend summer holidays with the Gattys at Hooton Roberts, between Rotherham and Doncaster, where Gatty's father was rector. He died in London, aged 72.

The Nicolas Gatty archive is held at the University of Exeter.

Birth and Death Data: Born September 13th, 1874, Died November 10th, 1946

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1928 - 1929

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer


Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia W145619 10-in. 2/7/1928 Bagatelle in D Jelly d' Arányi Violin solo, with piano composer  
Columbia W147939 10-in. 2/6/1929 Bagatelle in D Jelly d' Arányi Violin solo, with piano composer  


Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Gatty, Nicholas," accessed October 29, 2020,

Gatty, Nicholas. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from

"Gatty, Nicholas." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 29 October 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier



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