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LIVIO MANNUCCI (Violoncello)
JOSEPH FARRINGTON (Bass)
THE WIRELESS MILITARY BAND
Conducted by B. WALTON O'DONNELL
THERE were two brothers Marcello, both of whom were important figures in their own day, but it is the younger, Benedetto, who is best remembered. A lawyer by profession, he held several important Government posts, and was a real scholar in more than one branch of learning. But in spite of heavy official duties, he found time to win distinction both in music and in literature, and his biggest work is still regarded as taking a very high place in the history of music. It consists of eight folio volumes of Psalms for one, two, three or more voices with figured bass, and sometimes with obbligatos for violins and violoncello. The collection was held in esteem not only in Marcello's native Italy, but elsewhere, and the whole eight volumes were published in an English edition in 1757. He wrote a good deal of instrumental music, too, as well as songs, madrigals, operas, cantatas, and at least one oratorio, furnishing the texts himself for all these last. He wrote besides on musical and other subjects, and many of the European libraries have interesting MSS. of his. To us, one of the most interesting is a Cantata Timotheusfor which the text is a translation by Marcello of Dryden's poem. It is in the State Library at Dresden. His music was so highly thought of even in his own day that it is odd to find our historian Burney speaking rather slightingly of it, suggesting that it had been too much praised and that it was not very original. Burney was so much more often carried away by his enthusiasms that it is odd to find him at variance with a contemporary verdict which history has whole-heartedly endorsed.
There is a monument to Marcello in the Church of San Giuseppe at Brescia, recording his achievements as statesman, musician and poet. It is almost solely as musician that we hold him in grateful remembrance now.
EVEN in its original form as pianoforte music, the piece by the Russian composer Liadov contrives to give an excellent imitation of an old musical toy-a musical snuff-box which produced little tinkling tunes. In this arrangement, the Glockenspiel and other delicate-toned instruments of the band have even less difficulty in bringing off the same illusion. Apart, however, from its interest as an imitation, it is a charming little piece, dainty and melodious.
HOLST is one of the comparatively few modern
English composers who have shown a real interest in the value of Military Band music, by composing specially for it.
This Suite is in three movements. The first is a Chaconne, a modern treatment of an old form in which the music is built up of one phrase repeated over and over, generally in the bass, although occasionally in other parts, and with constantly varied treatment and interest. The second is a melodious and graceful intermezzo, and the third is a lively and vigorous March with a thoroughly popular march tune.
Dramatic Overture, ' Phedre ' - Massenet
JOSEPH FARRINGTON Woo thou thy Snowflake ('Ivanhoe ') - Sullivan
The Two Grenadiers - Schumann
BAND Fantasia from the Ballet, 'Coppélia' - Delibes
LIVIO MANNUCCI Largo - Marcello, arr. F. Pollain
Le Papillon (The Butterfly) - Caix d'Hervelois, arr. F. Pollain
BAND Russian Peasant Dance, ' Kukuska ' - Lehar
A Musical Snuffbox - Liadov
JOSEPH FARRINGTON Two Scottish Airs:O were I on Parnassus Hill - arr. Henschel
Gae bring to me - arr. George Short
BAND First Suite Chaconne ; Intermezzo; March - Holst
LIVIO MANNUCCI Rhapsodie - Popper
BAND Six Waltzes, Op. 39 (First Selection) - Brahms, arr. Gerrard Williams
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