Biography:Archibald Duff

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Archibald Duff


 Given name:     Archibald
 Middle name:     
 Family name:     Duff
 Place of birth:     Montrose
 Place of death:     Aberdeen
 Year of birth:     c. 1770
 Year of death:     c. 1840?
 Profile:     Composer, Editor, Musician
 Source of information:     

ARCHIBALD DUFF. Duff was born in Montrose, but later moved to Aberdeen to assume the music/dancing master practice of the famous Francis Peacock. Archibald also performed with his brother, violinist and dancing master Charles Duff. David Baptie, Musical Scotland (p. 48) gives:

Born Aberdeen (?), about 1770 (?), Dancing master and composer of dance music. In 1812 he issued "A Collection of Reels" etc., at Aberdeen, and a second at Montrose. His collection was dedicated to Lady Ramsay of Balmain. [James Davie says his second set never appeared].

John Glen gives:

ARCHIBALD DUFF, MONTROSE - The profession he followed was that of Dancing Master, an he first comes under our notice, in 1793, in an advertisement dated November, as follows:- "A Card. Mr Duff returns his most grateful thanks to the ladies and gentlemen of Montrose .

His first printed volume, A Collection of Strathspey Reels &c. (1794), was dedicated to Lady Carnegie of Southesk by Archibald Duff, "Dancing Master, Montrose." A later Choice Selection of Minuets, Favourite Airs, Hornpipes, Waltzs &c., Book First (Edinburgh, c. 1812) served as a showcase for his skills not only a a musician, but as a dancing master. A number of the tunes in the collection are grouped into dances (often called "Pas Seul", or 'solo dance'), which seem to have been arrangements of solo dances perhaps for his students (who are named in the titles). He did not attach his name to any of the compositions in his volume, but did include the names of some composers such as (Ignaz) Pleyel and (Pierre-Gabriel) Gardel.