Gallery of Notable Early Australian Music Educators History of Music Education in Australia compiled by Robin Stevens Homepage Bibliography of Secondary Sources Gallery of Notable Early Australian Music Educators
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Frank Gratton (1871-1946) - South Australia

Francis Lymer Gratton (1871-1946) became the Inspector of Music at the Training

College in Adelaide in 1914. He became the Supervisor of Music in the South

Australian Education Department in 1920 and held that position at his retirement

in 1936.  Gratton early demonstrated considerable musical skills, acquiring Tonic

Solfa qualifications and eventually becoming an Associate of the Tonic Sol-fa

College, London.   Gratton was an advocate for the system, then the mainstay of

the South Australian music curriculum.  Gratton was also an accomplished

musician, tenor and organist, an occasional composer and an inspiring conductor. 

In this last role he led conducted nearly one hundred “Thousand Voices” concerts

and helped train nearly 100,000 South Australian children in singing.  Gratton was

an impressive product of a music education curriculum that gave scope for his

ability to flourish.  He developed the system that he found into an impressive

maturity in which music was assured of a place in schools.  Effectively, he was at

the helm of school music in South Australia for thirty years.  Beyond the school

system he was a busy and appreciated musician, performing and conducting

during both his years as Supervisor and his retirement.  His efforts and

achievements deserve recognition.

Biographical notes by Jane Southcott.



Southcott, J. E., Music in State-Supported Schooling in South Australia to1920

(PhD thesis, Deakin University, 1997).

Southcott, J. E., 'Curriculum Stasis: Frank Gratton in South Australia', Research

Studies in Music Education, no.14 (June 2000), pp.50-60.