Started by Boris_G, July 12, 2007, 10:14:21 PM
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Quote from: Irons on January 28, 2021, 07:13:23 AMThere is an earlier recording too, although mono I prefer the ACL. The Danish orchestra of the period were outstanding.
Quote from: vandermolen on January 30, 2021, 12:24:45 AMI have that fine performance here Lol:
Quote from: Irons on February 01, 2021, 12:43:46 AMAn excellent CD Jeffrey of classic performances. Unlike Diversions and Sinfonia which are Decca the piano concerto is an EMI recording. I have it on LP coupled coincidently with the Rubbra Concerto which you mention with a later recording on another thread today. I would add another recording from the same vintage, Goossens recording of the Serenade. Dennis Brain's playing literally makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up!
Quote from: vandermolen on February 01, 2021, 01:24:09 AMThanks Lol. I hadn't realised that the Sinfonia da Requiem was EMI. That old HMV 20 Series was invaluable and I made many excellent discoveries after taking some of the releases out of my local record library in London. These included Rubbra's 5th Symphony (Barbirolli) on the LP which also featured VW's 'Five Variants on Dives and Lazarus' (my first encounter with that moving work as well) and the Oboe Concerto and also Robert Simpson's 1st Symphony (Boult) with Fricker's 2nd Symphony. The Rubbra/VW disc, in particular, had a great influence on me and I remember playing that LP over and over again.
Quote from: Irons on February 01, 2021, 07:45:42 AM PC is EMI Jeffrey, the Sinfonia da Requiem is indeed Decca.As you say the HMV 20 series is invaluable and I pick them up when available. I would like to collect the complete (20?) set but hit the buffers as they don't seem to turn up anymore. But like the rest of the world not getting out much. I do have the following on my shelves -4: Bliss, Music for Strings/Miracle of the Gorbals.5: Fricker/Simpson, 2nd & 1st Symphonies.6: Rubba/RVW, 5th Symphony/ Dives and Oboe Concerto.7: Rawsthorne, 1&2 Piano Concertos.11: Lambert/Bliss/Gordon, The Rio Grande Horoscope/Adam Zero Dance of Summer/ Rake's Progress Sarabande & Orgy.12: Britten/Rubbra, Piano Concertos.Without number: Walton Facade/ Johannesburg Festival/ Portsmouth Point/ Crown Imperial/ Orb and Sceptre. ditto: Ireland/Berkeley, Piano Concerto/Trio for Violin, Horn and Piano.
Quote from: pjme on February 01, 2021, 10:36:31 PMThe "cat piano" - what a strange choice! Read more about it at :http://imaginaryinstruments.org/the-cat-piano-katzenklavier-piano-de-chats/"For I will consider my cat Jeoffry" - Benjamin Brittenhttps://poets.org/poem/jubilate-agno-fragment-b-i-will-consider-my-cat-jeoffryhttps://youtu.be/JURSCBY5g3k
Quote from: Roasted Swan on February 13, 2021, 10:57:00 PMJeffrey has mentioned elsewhere that he is currently enjoying the Violin Concerto and Piano Concerto too (I think). My sense has always been that I engage more with Britten's earlier works and certainly that includes those two concerti. In a neat bit of synchronicity, I've been revisiting the discography of Stanislaw Skrowaczewki recently. His 90th birthday box from Oehms is superb and includes cycles of Beethoven/Brahms/Schumann etc but very little of the 20th Century music he also performed. I had missed his Arte Nova disc of Elgar and Britten;As it was available cheaply in the online marketplace I rectified that omission. I've not listened to the disc in full yet - more of a dipping in and what I've heard so far I like. The Piano Concerto doesn't sound as dynamic as some other versions which might be a recording style but the Elgar sounds good. Always pleasing to hear the notion that "Elgar doesn't travel well" disproved!
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 20, 2021, 12:55:46 AMLate to the party, I realise. But no, he never did. Seldom played it, I think, too. It was obviously written for him, as it draws heavily on the Russian Kontakion for the Dead for its themes, and Rostropovich allegedly simply found it too distressing or moving to play. I think Britten's intervening own death didn't help matters in that regard.I can't remember where I heard that, though, so I might have it all wrong. I did personally attend Rostropovich conducting the War Requiem in the Royal Festival Hall, though, and I recall that as he was cheered to the skies, he reached behind him for the full score from which he'd been conducting, kissed it as a holy icon and held it aloft for the audience to cheer to. The man was clearly in awe of Britten's music. It wouldn't surprise me in the least to learn he held that third suite in such high, almost holy, regard that he felt he wasn't the man to do it justice.Anyway: the 'missing' Rostropovich third cello suite is right up there with the 'missing' Britten conducts Gloriana as the two recordings I most regret not having been made, I think.
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 20, 2021, 08:45:28 AMGood catch on the live performance: the BBC was always recording things in Aldeburgh back then. Maybe they have a recording of that performance? Interesting possibiliy!!As to the concert: Well, frankly I can't remember specifics, but I would have been working at the Festival Hall then, and that would mean it was somewhere between 1986 and 1987. It was pretty remarkable (my first-ever live War Requiem, I think). But maybe not quite as special as me cycling to Aldeburgh to have tea and a stale digestive biscuit with Peter Pears in 1984, though!
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 21, 2021, 01:09:50 AMI was stuck up at Cambridge one summer, doing some research into the Levellers, and I suddenly got it into my head to write to him and say 'can I come and talk to you about Benjamin Britten'. For some reason that makes no sense to me now at all, I assumed that Cambridge and Aldeburgh were near-neighbours, given they're both (sort-of!) East Anglian. Yeah, I realise how dumb that is now!Anyway, I figured that if he wrote back saying 'no', at least I'd have his autograph! But he actually wrote back saying he'd love to have a chat, and when would I like to come. So I wrote back to him proposing a date, he confirmed, and warned me about the dreadful state of the Golf Course road he lived on. And thus I ended up taking the train from Cambridge to London, another from London to Ipswich, another from Ipswich to Saxmundham.. and then I cycled the rest of the way. Big mistake! I had though Suffolk would be as flat as Cambridge, but it wasn't and I was hot, bothered and late! But he kindly overlooked all of that, and offered me tea to calm down! And we just chatted about music, Ben and related stuff, how you go about staging gondolas on wires and wheels and so on. He ended up asking someone off-left to arrange for some free tickets to a string quartet concert that was happening later that year as part of the Aldeburgh Festival and suggested I should consider volunteering as a Hesse student. I think I only had about an hour with him, but I was star-struck and wasn't keeping tabs. I recall having taken my vocal score of the War Requiem with me, hoping to ask him to sign it... but I chickened out. It just didn't feel right to ask him, and I already had two of his signatures on letters... so I cycled off without asking him and have naturally regretted it ever since!It's my one big 'star-struck' story I have to share (apart from the one about me paying Olivier Messiaen his expenses at the Festival Hall, and me singing for Arvo Pärt -along with the rest of the choir, I have to admit- in a Sydney performance of Passio!). Right, that's all the name-dropping I can do right now.
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 21, 2021, 02:59:45 AMIt was nearly 40 years ago! (Lord, how time flies!), so my memory may not be quite all that it should be, but I think I stayed at a B&B in Saxmundham that night and made my way back to Cambridge the next day: gave me time to enjoy the delights of the Aldeburgh Fish and Chip shop, for one thing!
Quote from: Irons on June 22, 2021, 11:54:41 PMGreat part of the world. Westleton, not far from Saxmundham, a lovely village has the added attraction of an old chapel that sells books and LPs piled to the rafters. The owner every so often strikes a battered tin can with a stick and shouts "cup of tea anybody"?Our yearly treat is a few days stay at the Wentworth Hotel in Aldeburgh.
Quote from: Pohjolas Daughter on June 23, 2021, 05:23:58 AMOh, nice! Do you normally catch a concert or two during your stay?That book and record shop sounds like a real treat! Do you normally find some goodies there Irons?PD
Quote from: Irons on June 23, 2021, 07:24:42 AMTaken in a few concerts at Snape Maltings, PD. The most memorable being the Amadeus and Borodin String Quartets.An annual music festival is held in Aldeburgh itself. I recall a few years ago I purchased tickets for a concert that particularly appealed featuring the Janacek quartets. The concerts usually take place in a hall but as this was up for refurbishment the concerts were held at Aldeburgh church instead. Thought nothing of it until I took my place at the pew directly behind a dirty great concrete pillar! Barely able to see the musicians. I purchased a LP of Bach cello suites by André Navarra at the old chapel and sold it for a hefty profit on eBay. In the village there is also a duck pond and a memorial with a list of names of inhabitants who perished in WW1.
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 23, 2021, 08:29:50 AMDon't forget the Moot Hall! A lovely Elizabethan building that's been the home of the town council for 400 years or so. Contains some lovely memorabilia from Britten as freeman of the town and so on. Also happens to be the location where the opening of Peter Grimes is meant to take place. And the graveyard behind the church you went to, of course, contains the graves of Britten, Pears, Imogen Holst and Joan Cross (the very first Ellen Orford ...and also the first Elizabeth I in Gloriana, the first Female Chorus in Rape of Lucretia, the first Lady Billows in Albert Herring and the first Mrs Grose in the Turn of the Screw. Phew!). The church itself contains a glorious triptych stained glass window by John Piper, depicting the three church parables, and a monument to George Crabbe -who was born in Aldeburgh and whose poem 'The Borough' was the inspiration behind Peter Grimes... it's quite a convoluted set of interconnectedness down there! I love the place. Shame it takes ages to get to it from pretty much anywhere (except maybe Saxmundham!)
Quote from: Pohjolas Daughter on June 23, 2021, 09:05:10 AMGreat to hear that you've made it to some concerts at SM! And lousy luck re watching the musicians perform the Janacek quartets! That stinks! Sounds like it was assigned seating and you drew the short straw? Or others in the area knew not to purchase those seats?Well done you on finding a gem at the record store! Not surprising though knowing you and your knowledge!I took a little online look at that hotel and pictures of local areas...very pretty. Think that there is also a local wildlife area/refuge not too far away too?Speaking of wildlife, I've been busy trying to keep up with what the red-tailed hawks have been up to at Cornell. Lots of excitement there yesterday: the oldest one fledged (and successfully came back around dinnertime); the middle one was plucked out of the nest (platform really) by a vet, a volunteer and a heavy machine operator there (they had to use a cherry picker and go up over 70 feet!)--he or she's health had gotten noticeably worse lately--and is now off at a wildlife rehab facility; the youngest, well he/she keeps on wandering out onto the fledge ledge but no go so far. I provided some links to the news/video on the bird thread if you're interested.PD
Quote from: absolutelybaching on June 24, 2021, 12:48:44 AMYeah, it is incredibly chintzy now, but it's now how I recall it in the 1980s. When they were opening it to the public, they made a specific effort to put it back to be the way it was in the mid/late 1960s or so. I believe (but cannot speak from personal experience!) that chintz was "in" in those days. The thing that took my breath away for a second or two was that Britten's bed sheets all had name labels, like you had sewn into your school uniform at one time. I believe all his shirts hanging in the wardrobe were similarly labelled. I assume they didn't own a washing machine (and Mrs. Hudson refused to chip in!) and always sent things off to the laundry. I guess it makes sense, of a kind.On my last visit, having noticed the newly constructed large library/research area, I asked the curator what they had done with all the dogs. She looked blankly at me, and I said, well: Britten and Pears had buried quite a few dachsunds in their time: where were the graves now (as I'd seen them on my 1980s visit). Visibly flustered, she waved hands and said, Oh, they wouldn't have existed by the time the construction started. Decomposition, etc. Yeah, right. They built over the dogs!!
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