Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

Sign in to follow this  
MichaelBully

Works performed by German Composers

Recommended Posts

MichaelBully

I am re-reading Vera Brittain's 'Testament of Youth ' again a few pages at a time to really go through all the details that are recalled by the writer ; Vera was a VAD nurse at Clerkenwell in the Summer of 1916 and the hospitals were getting ready for expected casualties of the expected 'big push'. Vera's brother Edward Brittain had been sent out to the Western Front. On 1st July 1916, Vera and a fellow VAD nurse attended a performance of Brahms Requiem, and upon leaving the concert hall see the newpaper hoardings and headlines regarding The Somme .

Brahms Requiem was originally written in German.

This has really got me thinking whether works by German composers were subject to any sanction during the Great War , or performed in English where possible? (The performance that Vera Brittain attended was sung in English. )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
David  B

I would be very surprised if that was the case, music transcends nationality, although there may have been a bit of prejudice. In the opera world most of

the works are sung in Italian - not all admittedly, even G F Handel wrote some things to be sung in German even though he was considered English during

his lifetime even though he was born in German.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
David_Underdown

There were efforts to take German works off concert programmes. The Proms were then supported by the music publishers, Chappell's (the BBC didn't get involved until later), and they put pressure on Henry Wood to change programmes, though he refused, largely for the reasons given by rgartillery. There are more details in the two main published histories of the Proms, and probably also in Wood's autobiography

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
MartH

Wigmore Hall was originally Bechstein Hall, check the history out here Click Click

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
MichaelBully

Thanks for the replies guys. Particularly interested to hear about the Bechstein Hall /Wigmore Hall, and there was also pressure on concer pianists not to use German pianos. Regards, Michael Bully

Wigmore Hall was originally Bechstein Hall, check the history out here Click Click

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
centurion

Did it go both ways? Were Bizet and Elgar's works still performed in Germany (Elgar was initially very popular in Germany before he was recognised in Britain)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Belmont Road

I know its not WW1 so apologies for that.

The BBC call sign in WW2, recorded on percussion by a famous percussionist of the time Jimmy Blades, was taken from Beethoven's 5th Symphony.

Jack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...