Back in London Bridgetower's career was notable for the friendship
and respect he enjoyed amongst his peers. Among his friends were
the composer Viotti, Johann Cramer, the German-born pianist, composer
and music publisher, the organist Thomas Attwood, Dr Charles Hague,
Professor of Music at Cambridge, and Samuel Wesley who left an appreciation
of Bridgetower which began: "George Polgreen Bridgetower, whom they
used to denominate the African Prince, is justly to be ranked with
the very first masters of the violin."
Bridgetower was elected to the Royal Society of Musicians in London
on 4 October 1807, and in June 1811 he took the degree of B.Mus.
at Cambridge. His exercise on the occasion was an anthem which was
performed with full orchestra and chorus at Great St Mary's Church
on 30 June 1811. The Times on 2 July commented that "the
composition was elaborate - and rich and highly accredited to the
talents of the Graduate".
Subsequently Bridgetower taught the piano, and in 1812 published
a small piano work, Diatonica Armonica, dedicated to his
pupils. He played in the Philharmonic Society's first season in
1813, leading the performance of Beethoven's 'Quintett', and he
was recommended for membership of the RPS in 1817. He was re-admitted
on 6 November 1819, when the notice he received also mentions that
when attending concerts he is entitled to be accompanied by 'Mrs
Bridgetower'. After 1820 he is mentioned from time to time in various
letters and memoirs: Rome (1825 & 1827), London (1843 &
1846) and Vienna and Paris (1848). A letter from Vincent Novello,
the organist, publisher and composer who led the Bach revival in
Britain, is signed “your much obliged old pupil and professional
Guest-curated for the British Library by Mike Phillips
Next - 'The final years'