Bennet, William (1767?-1833?) (DNB00)

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BENNET or BENNETT, WILLIAM (1767?–1833?), musician, was born about 1767 at Comteinteignhead, Devonshire, where his father possessed an estate. Bennet's first musical instructors were Bond and Jackson of Exeter, but he subsequently came to London, where he studied under John Christian Bach and Schroeter. He was an excellent pianist, and was noted for his extempore performances on the organ. He is said to have been the first to introduce grand pianofortes into Plymouth, where he was appointed organist of St. Andrew's in 1793. In 1797 he married a Miss Debell, of Guildford. Of his later life no information is forthcoming. In 1812 he was living in Barrack Street, Plymouth, where he still held the post of organist at St. Andrew's, a position he continued to occupy in 1824 (Dictionary of Musicians, 1824), and according to the 'Georgian Era' (1833) in 1833; but as the account of him in the latter work is practically a reprint of that in the former, the statement is not to be fully relied on. Bennet published several unimportant songs, glees, and pianoforte pieces, which are now entirely forgotten.

[Georgian Era, iv. p. 647; Dictionary of Musicians, 1824; The Picture of Plymouth, 1812.]

W. B. S.