A Passionate Affair — Llewellyn Owen & Music

Margaret Bean


In 1986 assorted material relating to Llewellyn Owen (1871–1950) was gifted to the Ashburton Museum, and a brief project to learn more about his life — school teacher, private music teacher, composer, conductor, accompanist and solo performer — uncovered the intriguing story of a family of four boys and their parents who emigrated from England to New Zealand in the late 19th century.

SKU: 9781927242865 Categories: , , , Tag:


Llewellyn, the youngest son, was briefly a schoolmaster in Ashburton before establishing a thriving practice in the town as a music teacher. With his outgoing nature and appearance in the many reports of concerts and social events that ‘ended in dancing till the small hours’, it can be fairly said that throughout nearly thirty years of residence Llewellyn and his abilities were in considerable demand. He lodged at least four original compositions with Stationers’ Hall in London, and published his music in England and New Zealand.

A Passionate Affair contains the scores for seven of Llewellyn’s musical works, one of which was discovered during research for this book, as well as a CD of his music.

About the author

Margaret Bean farms in partnerships with her husband Alan and has lived all her life in the Ashburton district. A trained teacher and graduate of Canterbury University, she was voluntary archivist for the Ashburton Museum and Historical Society from 1991 to 2007, during which time she gained a Diploma of Museum Studies from Massey University.

As archivist Margaret became aware of Llewellyn Owen and, although not a musician herself, she undertook his biography. A Passionate Affair is in part a contribution to the social history of the Ashburton district, as well as an acknowledgement of the significant yet neglected role such musicians played in creating the fabric of musical life in provincial towns throughout New Zealand.

Additional information


, ,