Relayed from the Queen's Hall, London
Sir Henry J. Wood and his Symphony Orchestra
Hilda Blake (Soprano); Francis Russell (Tenor); Charles Kelly (Pianoforte)
Conducted by the Composer
Miss Spain-Dunk can claim the unusual distinction of having conducted one of her compositions at a Promenade Concert each season for the past four years. She also conducted her Overture, The Kentish Downs, at the Bournemouth Festival this year.
She was trained at the Royal Academy of Music, of which she is a Fellow. There she won a prize for composition-the first of several such achievements ; two other successes were in the competitions organized by Mr. W. W. Cobbett, for chamber works. She is a keen player in ensembles, playing the Viola in several String Quartets, and is a Pianist also.
This work has as poetic basis Tennyson's conception of Elaine, 'the lily maid of Astolat' in Lancelot and Elaine (Idylls of the King).
What a wonderfully attractive figure Liszt must have been in his day! Composer,
Conductor, Churchman and Pianist, he fascinated everybody as much by the air of romance with which sentimental folk surrounded him as by his amazing technique. Musicians appreciated that too, and valued still more his innovations in the methods of musical structure, some of which are to be noted in this work. Its three movements, for instance, are played without break, and the chief themes appear in more than one of the Movements.
First Movement. (Quick, with majesty).
The First Main Tune is given out by the Full Orchestra. After a quieter section for the Piano, the Slow Second Main Tune is heard in the Strings, gently rising and falling, before being given out by the Solo instrument. The Flute, and immediately after it the Clarinet, have a Third Tune, which is heard again in the Last Movement.
Second Movement. (Fairly quick, vivacious).
The Triangle is much used here. It introduces a new Main Tune, which Strings expound. This Movement, in a gay and capricious spirit, leads again, without interruption, into the The Last Movement, (Quick, martial, animated). Beginning with the Slow melody we heard before, we have next the Flute's Third Tune, and changed but quite recognizable versions of the melody of . tho vivacious Movement. This last part sums up and re-presents the foregoing material.
Symphony ('From the New World').... Dvorak
The Symphony consists of four separate Movements. They are quite distinct, though from the Second Movement onwards one constantly hears bits of tunes from the other Movements.
The First Movement begins with a portentous and rather gloomy Introduction. Soon, however, this gives way to a vigorous, lively piece of music.
The Second Movement is intended, we are told, to express the Composer's reflections on Hiawatha's courtship of Minnehaha. Certainly the greater part of it is like a very expressive love-song.
The Third Movement is a boisterous Scherzo, full of rough good humour
The Last Movement is forceful and dramatic.
It contains several tunes from the other Movements.
The First Dance Rhapsody was brought out at the Hereford Festival of 1909. It is written for a large Orchestra, including the rarely-heard Heckelphone (an Improved Bass Oboe).
At the outset a short Introduction brings forth some of the tunes to be worked upon. Two of these appear successively on Oboe and Flute. Another motif of which use is made is the little dance played by the Horns.
In the next section the time quickens considerably, and a new tune is given out, low down. Violins, in octaves, have another. The treatment of these is free, and charmingly coloured.
After a climax, a slow section ensues, in which a Solo Violin has a beautiful version of the 6rst Tune, accompanied only by Strings.
The last clear division is that in which the very lively pace is resumed. The ending is loud and most energetic.
Sir Hehry J.