Archive

The forgotten Father Smith organ at the Bishop’s Palace in County Durham (England)

Description and history of a seemingly “forgotten” organ by Bernard “Father” Smith, the organ-builder superstar of the seventeenth century, which includes 4 complete pieces played on the original 1688 stops. [...]

Gustav Leonhardt symposium report, Utrecht, August 2012.

Report on the Gustav Leonhardt symposium August 2012 by Jed Wentz. This famous baroque-music pioneer was honoured by his peers with performances and papers. [...]

The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge and the man who made it famous. Part 2

In an earlier post I introduced Boris Ord, the conductor of King’s College Choir for nearly 30 years. But what else do we know about him? [...]

The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge and the man who made it famous. Part 1

The first of a two blog posts about Boris Ord, the organist and choirmaster who took over the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge in 1929 and made it world-famous. [...]

“A Long and Beautiful Life”: A tribute to Gustav Leonhardt by Ton Koopman

“A Beautiful Life”: A tribute to Gustav Leonhardt by Ton Koopman [...]

Gustav Leonhardt (1928–2012), the end of an era

Gustav Leonhardt in 1972

 

It’s so sad that Gustav Leonhardt is no more.

I first heard him, partnered by Frans Brüggen in a concert in St Albans. Since then, I’ve seen him many times and, apart from the extraordinary playing, have often been struck by the fact that he mostly used his own [...]

Arnold Goldsbrough – Yorkshireman, organist, harpsichordist & conductor Part 1

 

I mentioned in my post on Thurston Dart that I couldn’t find out much about Arnold Goldsbrough, who had been his teacher at the Royal College of Music 1938–9.

Since then I’ve tracked down Arnold’s son, now in his eighties, who has put me onto his dad’s surviving cronies and told me some [...]

Virgil Fox, organist – Saint or Sinner?

 

I knew the name Virgil Fox, as one half of the dynamic duo who – with English émigré E. Power Biggs – had established the organ as a concert instrument in the US, rather than simply being the box of tricks which accompanied hymns in church. But until now, I had never heard him play.

It was, then, [...]

How famous is scholar, conductor and harpsichordist Thurston Dart, 40 years on? Part 2

 

With the death of Dart’s close personal friend and executor William Oxenbury, Gustav Leonhardt is now probably the only person alive who knew Dart, but not as a teacher. They were apparently well acquainted and served together on the jury at the harpsichord competition at Bruges. Their approach to Froberger seems quite similar in these [...]