JOAN VINCENT (Soprano)
THE VERA PARKER CROOK TRIO
Directed by JOSEPH MUSCANT
From THE COMMODORE THEATRE, HAMMERSMITH
From THE DORCHESTER HOTEL
(From Midland Regional)
' The Whispering of the Years, a Yuletide
Fantasy,' by NORMAN Timmis.
Christmas, 1867 Christmas, 1890
The Wartime Christmas, 1916 The Wireless Christmas, 1931
WEATHER FORECAST, FIRST GENERAL NEWS
BULLETIN; London Stock Exchange Report and Bulletin for Farmers
Sung by LINDA SEYMOUR (Contralto) and JOHN ARMSTRONG (Tenor)
THOUGH Richard Strauss is best known to the general public by his Symphonic Poems and Operas, he has written also a very great number of songs, which some people count among his greatest achievements.
Many of them were introduced to the British public, as some whose memories go back far enough may recall, in the programmes of the Strauss Festival, given in London, at the old St. James' Hall in 1903. when they were sung with great charm by the composer's wife, at that time a well-known operatic singer, Pauline De Ahna.
In style and character, Strauss' songs cover a wide range. Some are deeply felt and expressive, such as Traum durch die Dammerung (the most famous of them all), Ruhe meine Seele, and many more of the highest beauty. Others are passionate and brilliant, electrifying in their ardour and glow, such as Heimliche Aufforderung and Caeilie. Yet others, of which the Steinklopfers Lied is a typical example, deal with the less pleasant aspect of life in a manner appropriately grim and harsh ; while others again, such as the lovely Morgen and the delicious Muttertäudeleiare idyllic in their simplicity and charm.
Strauss has himself explained, in a highly interesting letter, his methods of composition. ' For some time,' lie wrote, ' I will have no impulso to compose at all. Then oneovening I will be turning the leaves of a volume of poetry and a poem will strike my eye. I read it through ; it agrees with the mood I am in ; and at once the appropriate music is fitted to it. I am in a musical frame of mind, and all I want is the right poetic vessel into which to pour my ideas. If good luck throws this in my way, a satisfactory song results.' But if, he added, the poem was not the right one, or he was not in the mood, then things worked out very differently and, hard as he might try, the result was never satisfactory.
But this is, of course, the way with all composers. It is only a pity that a larger proportion of Strauss' finest songs are not more regularly sung in England, where the tendency is to ring the changes perpetually on only a few of the best known; listeners will be glad to make acquaintance with some of the less familiar songs which Linda, Seymour and John Armstrong are introducing as the Foundations of Music this week.
By Miss V. SACKVILLE-WEST
THE HULBERT BROTHERS
JACK HULBERT and CLAUDE HULBERT
MARIO DE PIETRO
Mandolin and Banjo Solos
WINNIE MELVILLE and DEREK OLDHAM
The Popular Musical Comedy Stars
LAWRENCE BROUGH and OLGA ESME
' Choosing an Instrument'
ARTHUR PRINCE and 'JIM'
THE ORCHESTRA, under the direction of S. KNEALE KELLEY , will play during the programme
WEATHER FORECAST, SECOND
GENERAL NEWS BULLETIN
TATIANA MAKUSHINA (Soprano)
THE KUTCHER STRING QUARTET:
SAMUEL KUTCHER ( Violin), FREDERICK GRINKE (Violin), RAYMOND JEREMY (Viola), DOUGLAS CAM-
IT is not easy to describe in words, as a listener recently asked the B.B.C. to do, what is
. meant by 'Romantic' music. To anyone who listens attentively, Schumann's music itself answers the question much better than words could do, and nowhere more convincingly than in the string quartets. They are full, even fuller than most of Schumann's music, of those poetic qualities for which no better term could easily be found than Romantic,' and they had a good deal to do with enhancing his reputation when they appeared in 1842, as practically his first essay in writing chamber music. They were clearly composed under genuine impulse; all three were written within a month, and the last two movements of the third occupied Schumann only one day each. They are dedicated to Mendelssohn, and the Leipzig world of music took them up with enthusiasm.
DEBUSSY'S one String Quartet is an early work, and is almost the only chamber music ho wrote until his last years. While he was writing the quartet he was already busy with the opera Pelleas and Melisande, though it was not completed until long afterwards ; it was at that period, too, that his enthusiasm for the poet Mallarme, who inspired The Faun's After. noon, had a big share in developing the turn of mind which his music reflects so very much better than any words could describe. The quartet is pervaded throughout by that vague and shadowy atmosphere of beauty which Debussy knew better than anyone else how to achieve in mere tones. He himself once declared that in it he had said all he had to say in that form, but there are many of his admirers who feel quite sure that if he had given us others, or even one other, in his later years, it might have been even richer in those qualities of poetic beauty of which he was master. There are four movements, which all follow the classical models more faithfully than on a first hearing they seem to do. The use of the whole tone scale, and an inclination towards old church modes, are the two chief features which were novel when the quartet first appeared, though everybody knows how familiar Debussy afterwards made them.
HENRY HALL'S GLENEAGLES HOTEL BAND, from THE ADELPHI HOTEL,