: Piano Solos by Cecil Dixon. Songs by Rex Palmer. The Story of 'The Golden Touch,' told by Ena Grossmith. 'The Legend of Westminster Abbey ' (Christine Chaundlcr and Eric Wood)
BOTH from the point of view of architecture and historical connections, Westminster Abbey is probably the most interesting building in the Kingdom. It had its beginning in a monastery founded by tho Saxon King Egbert over thirteen hundred years ago. The saintly Edward the Confessor rebuilt this monastery on a magnificent scale and called the new shrine West Minster. In the thirteenth century Henry III began the erection of a more splendid building, which was completed by Edward I. As it stands today, the Abbey represents something like five hundred years of wonderful construction and forms a precious national heritage. The legend included in today's programme is the story—carefully preserved in the old records-of how Westminster Abbey came to be dedicated to St. Peter.
THE WIRELESS ORCHESTRA, conducted by JOHN ANSELL ; ESTHER COLEMAN (Contralto) ; EDITH
DUSSLAN AND LUDMILLA is a fairy-tale
Opera about a Princess who was wooed by three lovers, and on the eve of her wedding with one of them, the Knight Russian, was carried off by a wicked magician. The adventures of the three rivals in search of the Princess provide all sorts of exciting adventures, which introduce wizards, a sorceress, dwarfs, fairies, and a gigantic head which, when it blows, creates storms.
The Overture, a stirring piece of quick music, is built on themes from the Opera. One of them, that represents the wicked magician, is a descending whole-tone scale (on the piano, that in which there intervenes a key, black or white, between each pair of successive keys in the scale).
The First Main Tune is given out, after a few bars of Introduction, by the Full Orchestra, with great energy. This is worked up a little, one part ' imitating ' another, and then the broad, swinging, Second Main Tune comes on the Bassoons and lower Strings.
It is just before the Coda, or winding-up section, that we hear the ' whole tone scale,' blared out by the heaviest bass instruments. After it the Overture quickly rattles on to a rollicking conclusion.
Fantasia on Moussorgsky's ' Boris Godounov '
WHEN Boris Godounov was first performed in England (during a season of Opera given by Sir Joseph Beecham in 1914), the occasion was looked upon as one of the events of the century. Musicians, Press and public were stirred and delighted by this strange, wonderful, picturesque and intense music, and few imagined that in a few years it would cease to be performed in England. Nowadays, instead of enjoying the music, people have been arguing as to how much of what we heard under Beecham was written by the irregular genius Moussorgsky and how much had been touched up by the more polished talent of Rimsky-Korsakov, and whether the latter should be praised or denounced for what he did. Some day we may witness a performance of the true, unadulterated Moussorgsky-but when ?
The plot deals with the usurping Czar, Boris, who has made his throne safer by murdering the rightful heir, and who dies in a madness of terror and remorse as a rebellion threatens his house and throne;