Samuel Cartwright

March 8, 2011

Samuel Cartwright –  One of the main reasons that touring performers were keen to visit London was the quality of the health care available there. This ranged from the dental care offered by Samuel Cartwright (who innovated the appointment system) to doctors such as Archibald Billing [See NPG D9290], who also acted as a financial […]

Fredrick Delius

March 8, 2011

Fredrick Delius –  Group including Frederick Delius and Philip Arnold Heseltine by Ernest Procter pencil, 1929   Delius was largely self-taught, like Elgar, and came from a German commercial family which had settled in Bradford.  Roy Strong pointed out his anti-modernist stance: ‘In common with others of his generation he reacted strongly against the world of […]

Benjamin Britten

March 8, 2011

Benjamin Britten Britten-Pears Foundation: Aldeburgh       Benjamin Britten was essentially a ‘team player’, and his gregarious nature, expressed both as a performer and a composer, which helped him to create a new British  vernacular that reached out beyond the confines of the musical world. Many of the crucial creative moments in his life happened in domestic […]

Imogen Holst

March 8, 2011

Imogen Holst – ( Imogen Clare Holst by Milein Cosman etching, 1981 Archive Collection)    William Glock provides a powerful illustration of Imogen Holst’s gift for teaching. This is particularly moving for me, as it was written by the wonderful pianist, Joyce Rathbone, who was a huge influence on my in my late teens:  ….Imogen Holst’s […]

Gustav Holst

March 8, 2011

Gustav Holst – ( Gustav Theodore Holst by Millicent Woodforde oil on canvas, 1910 Primary Collection) 12th April 2011. Murfreesboro, Tennessee. I find myself sitting listening to the orchestra of MTSU rehearsing Holst’s ‘Hammersmith’, absolutely beautifully. I am momentarily homesick for the river Thames, ‘sullen and intractable’ as Eliot had it, with which Holst begins this […]

Edward Elgar

March 8, 2011

Edward Elgar – ( Sir Edward Elgar, Bt by Sir William Rothenstein chalk, 1917 Primary Collection) Click on Highlighted words to follow Links    Elgar valued the company of groups of like minded friends enough to base a whole work on the idea. The dedication of his  Enigma Variation reads: ‘To my friends pictured within.’ […]

Beethoven

March 8, 2011

Ludwig van Beethoven – ( Ludwig van Beethoven by Lazarus Gottlieb Sichling, after Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller line engraving, (1823)  Beethoven never managed to visit London, but, by the end of his life, had become as influential a member of the arts community there as any other composer. This was partially due to the foundation of […]

Jelly D’Aranyi and Bartok

March 8, 2011

Jelly D’Aranyi  by Charles Geoffroy-Dechaume oil on canvas, 1920s? Bela Bartok-Second Sonata (1922) Dedicated to Jelly d’Aranyi Live Performance-Aaron Shorr-Piano, Peter Sheppard Skaerved-Violin (Stradivari 1698 ‘Joachim’) Wiltons Music Hall July 11th 2011 Engineer-Colin Still (Optic Nerve) 1st Movement-[Audio clip: view full post to listen] [Audio clip: view full post to listen] Jelly d’Aranyi was the […]

George Bernard Shaw

March 8, 2011

George Bernard Shaw – (George Bernard Shaw by Sir (John) Bernard Partridge watercolour, circa 1925 )  George Bernard Shaw’s alter ego as a music critic, was corno di bassetto, (bassett horn). This polymath genius’s influence on music, over 70 years of writing about it, was such that, had he not written another word save that […]

Yehudi Menuhin

March 8, 2011

Yehudi Menuhin and Eric Fenby – (Eric William Fenby; Yehudi Menuhin, Baron Menuhin by Unknown photographer resin print, 1970s )  Yehudi Menuhin and Eric Fenby standing together: one composer’s amanuensis working with a transformative violinist. Fenby enabled the blind Delius to write his wonderful late works, especially the radiant 3rd Sonata, and then passed the flame […]