Henry Cooke

(1647 -1674)

English musician, bass singer, choir master. Son of George Cooke. Choirboy of the Chapel Royal in the late 1620s and early 1630s. Master of the Choristers of Westminster Abbey 1639. Captain in the Royalist army during the Civil War 1642-49. Bass singer in King's Private Musick 1660. Composer for the Private Musick 1660. Musician on lute and virginal 1660. Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal and Master of the Boys in the "Private Musick" 1660-72. Corporation of Music (Guild) in London 1662-72. Gentleman of the Chapel Royal 1663. Henry Cooke was responsible for rebuilding the Chapel Royal after the Restoration, and introducing instrumental music into the Church Services. As Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal after the Restoration, He trained among others Pelham Humfrey, John Blow, and Henry Purcell. Cooke was favorably known not only as their teacher but as composer for stage and church, as actor and as singer. His works include the opera The Siege of Rhodes (1656) by Davenant. His daughter married Pelham Humfrey1672.

VIIA: Henry Purcell and his Contemporaries