1921 Modern Music Wyatt

Modern Music
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  Modern MusicAuthor(s): Edward WyattSource: The Musical Times, Vol. 62, No. 942 (Aug. 1, 1921), p. 580Published by: Musical Times Publications Ltd. Stable URL: . Accessed: 11/10/2014 13:47 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at  .  . JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact  .  Musical Times Publications Ltd.  is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to The Musical Times. This content downloaded from on Sat, 11 Oct 2014 13:47:08 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions  580 THE MUSICAL TIMES-AUGUST I 1921 BRITISH MUSIC AT ZURICH SIR,-I wish to write bout the concert f British music recently iven t Ziirich nder ir Henry Wood in connec- tion with the International usical Festival, particulars f which have only ust reached me. It is rather late n the day to call 'Fire ' but that eeble xpostulation orresponds rather well with he almost ickening ense of futility hich is apt to overcome hose nterested n British musical welfare at this further nstance f downright itiful mismanagement. I have heard hard things aid about British music as it existed r did not exist during he ast century; but doubt whether t has ever encountered blacker day than the one on which an alleged concert of British music had to be foisted p at one end by the Oberon' Overture nd propped up at the other-this the crowning nsult-by Tchaikovsky's -Tchaikovsky's, mark you-' Francesca a Rimini' farrago. Art nd the propagation f art is, or should be, a national matter, nd as a respectable tax-payer, ate-payer, nd everything-else-payer f this nlightened ountry, demand firstly o know which gentleman r gentlemen may be held responsible or thus nsulting ur composers, nd secondly that he or they should give a public explanation f their conduct. It is hardly ood manners n my part o ask you, Sir, to piut our ournal at the disposal f the man or the men I am seeking, ut bad manners re preferable o bad management, nd I would suggest that you carry out a searching nquiry nto his nd other malignant rowths hat are stifling musical progress n this country. Perhaps amongst other things you might appoint a small sub- commission onsisting f myself nd a hefty runcheon to inquire nto the responsibility or nserting arpenter's essay n Baby Perambulation nto a concert ecently iven by the British Musical Congress, his being nother triking instance of the mulish kicks we have to expect from hose who organize oncerts n this ountry. To return o the Ziirich fiasco: even apart from the insults have mentioned he oncert was full f unsatisfactory features. If apparently here was only ne concert vailable I am inclined to uphold the choice of Elgar's 'Enigma' Variations n preference o one of his Symphonies, hough must ualify his by saying hat quite fail to see how any foreigner an hope to form he faintest onception f the present tate of British music without hearing one of these masterpieces. I must trongly ondemn he nclusion f the Purcell Suite for strings s being entirely nnecessary, s unnecessary n fact as the Prelude to the third Act of ' Lohengrin' would be in a concert evoted o contemporary German music. Purcell needs no pushing t this time of day, whereas our present foremost composers most decidedly o. Nor can I altogether ommend he choice of the Butterworth hapsody, s it is far too intimate or a concert f this kind, which ought to have been limited o works that were not so English n their ppeal as to be almost unintelligible o foreign udiences n general nd a Swiss audience n particular. But where was Delius, where Holst? The 'Song of the High Hills' would have been ideal for his occasion, nd the Hymn of Jesus,' ven if it had not been thoroughly ppreciated, ould hardly have failed o make deep impression. It must be remembered that here were choral works n the other programmes, nd I don't think that the various choral bodies which united for this festival would have found the study f these two works nsuperable. I hate to go back to the subject of the opening and closing tems, nd shall not discuss he latter t all, but it seems to me that he choice of an opening number uitable for a concert of this kind was entirely imited to the 'Cockaigne' Overture perhaps best of all), 'In the South' (a neglected masterpiece), nd either the first r fourth 'Pomp and Circumstance' Marches, which iterally eem with srcinality n the best ense of the word, nd spring from purely ritish mentality. However, constructive uggestions re held to be better than destructive riticism, o I suggest hat the following programme ould be eminently uitable or he next oncert of this kind, whether t be held at Zuirich r in Zululand: Overture... ... ... ' Martha ... ... ... Flotow Selection... 'The Merry Wives of Windsor ' ... Nvicolai Symphony ...... 'The Scotch ' ....... . iendelssoins Mad Scene ... ... ' Luc ia' ... ... Donizetti Overture...........'Britannia' ...... IWagner A word f warning n conclusion. I have written ery bluntly, ut have not, n my pinion, xaggerated. There are many thers who entirely hare my views but who are too well bred to state them n the manner have done. We are not going to put up with this sort f thing very much longer. What support s given to concerts n this country omes chiefly rom enthusiastic music-lovers ike myself, ut they nd I are gradually oming to the end of our tether, nd the 3s. we have so patiently aid in the past to listen o badly rranged oncerts will soon be used for ther nd better urposes. Another romenade eason is upon us. Will Sir Henry Wood, who for ome unaccount- able reason llowed his reputation o be associated with hat unspeakable iirich oncert, tone while here s yet ime o atone, nd usher n a new era of orchestral oncerts n this country? Put n a nutshell, et those f us who really are for he cause of British music vow that we won't ttend ny :oncert r series f concerts which ncludes uppe's ' Poet and Peasant' Overture o the neglect f the second Pomp and Circumstance' March. Then, at least, we shall be helping o extricate ritish music from he Soup.-Yours, Westward Ho Hotel, ROBERT LORENZ. Westcliffe-on-Sea. July 14, 1921. ROBERT FAIRFAX SIR,-October 24, 1921, is the four-hundredth nniversary of the death of Dr. Robert Fairfax, organist f St. Albans Abbey before the Dissolution, nd probably the greatest English musician efore allis. It is felt that the anniversary ight well be observed by the restoration nd re-dedication f the memorial rass in the Presbytery, hich was destroyed robably uring he 17th entury. A drawing f the brass made in 1643 still exists, and the cost of restoration ould be about ?5o, exclusive f incidental xpenses. If more money were received, the balance would be devoted to completing he transcript, lready begun by Mr. Royle Shore, of the Fairfax music n Lambeth Palace. Fairfax, n his generation, id great service for music, and in the hope that this attempt o revive nd perpetuate his memory may appeal to some of your readers, ask you to publish his etter n your next ssue. Contributions may be sent to E. N. Wix, Holywell House, St. Albans.-Yours, &c., G. W. BLENKIN St. Albans, July, 1921. (Dean and Rector f St. Albans). MODERN MUSIC SIR,-May I add a small contribution o your orrespond- ence on the merits f modern music? Not long ago I was discussing he subject with a distinguished cclesiastic, himself no mean musician, who summed up his opinions thus: 'The greater art f t s not weet nough or eeping purposes.' My negligence ould be inexcusable, were to leave such a delightful on mot nrecorded.-Yours, &c., 24, St. George's Square, S.W. I. EDWARD WYATT. July I8, 1921. WANTED-A MUSICAL CLUB SIR,-I am very anxious to find a musical club in London. I do not mean the ordinary lub, where hamber music s eternally layed, but a club where the members each contribute t times, inging, iolin, violoncello, iano- forte, lees, nd, of ourse, rios nd quartets. It should have a social side, that is to say, the members, s such, could speak to each other without ntroductions but this, erhaps, is too much to expect from Mrs. Grundy ). I cannot believe hat in this, he largest ity n the world, there s not ne uch club. There must e thousands ike myself ho don't meet musical eople, but who always want to do so. Can you r any of your eaders help me ?--Yours, &c., Hampstead, N.W. 3. 'CLIFTONIA.' Ju1ly 3, 1921. This content downloaded from on Sat, 11 Oct 2014 13:47:08 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions

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