• Music for Viola & Cello Played By Herbert Downes & Jacqueline Du Pre

    Music for Viola & Cello Played By Herbert Downes & Jacqueline Du Pre

    Jacqueline Du Pre was born in Oxford and commenced learning the cello at the age of five with Alison Dalrymple, she then went on to study with William Pleeth at the age of ten. Only five years later she was enrolled to the Casals Master Class at Zermatt, Switzerland. She made her formal début at the Wigmore Hall in March 1961 accompanied by Ernest Lush. It was her concerto début in March 1962 at the Royal Festival Hall, performing the Elgar Cello Concerto that propelled her career into the stratosphere – bringing spontaneous critical enthusiasm followed by global recognition.

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    Yura Guller plays Frédéric Chopin – Mazurkas Favorites

    The origins of the Mazurka can be traced back to early Polish folk music and dance. Chopin wrote a total of sixty-nine of them for solo piano during his lifetime, the first of which were composed in 1825 and the last in 1849, the year of his death.

  • Yura Guller plays Frédéric Chopin – Nocturnes Favorites

    Yura Guller plays Frédéric Chopin – Nocturnes Favorites

    Yura Guller was born in 1895 in Marseille, France. She started to learn the piano at the age of five, giving recitals at a very early age before enrolling at the Paris Conservatoire at just nine years old. It is here that she studied under Isidor Philipp, a tutor of impeccable pedigree having studied with Camille Saint-Saëns, Théodore Ritter & Georges Amadée St. Claire Mathias (himself a direct pupil of Frédéric Chopin).

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    Carl Schuricht conducts the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra performing Bruckner’s Symphony No.9 in D Minor

    Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 was written between 1893-1896 and was to be his last, the final movement remaining unfinished at point of his death in 1896. Bruckner’s Ninth Symphony is both unique and complex in style presenting the listener with many different patterns and themes, traits that can be found in nearly all of Bruckner’s Symphonies. Monumental in its form and design, a vast orchestral canvas and soundscape providing fertile ground for experimentation and harmonic counterpoint. It ranks as one of the most innovative symphonies to be composed in the 19th Century.

  • ERC024 Jackie McLean Quintet - Lights Out!

    ERC024 Jackie McLean Quintet - Lights Out!

    “Lights Out” was Jackie McLean’s debut album for Prestige Records (PRLP 7035) recorded by Rudy Van Gelder in January 1956 and released in June the same year.

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Music for Viola & Cello Played By Herbert Downes & Jacqueline Du Pre

Although this disc is most famous for being Jacqueline Du Pre’s debut cello recital, we should certainly not bypass the marvellous contribution from the distinguished artist Herbert Downes. Born in 1909 Downes began playing the violin at the age of 10, before going on to study under both Paul Beard and the legendary Carl Flesch.  He was a founder member of the famous Philharmonia Quartet in England along with Henry Holst, Ernest Element and Anthony Pini.  Downes initial instrument of choice was the violin, but he later became more well known for his playing of the Viola. As an avid collector of instruments and bows he eventually acquired and played a 1560 Gasparo da Salò. These short works contained on the A Side of this superb disc showcase Downes skills an expert chamber music player of immense talent.

Jacqueline Du Pre was born in Oxford and commenced learning the cello at the age of five with Alison Dalrymple, she then went on to study with William Pleeth at the age of ten.  Only five years later she was enrolled to the Casals Master Class at Zermatt, Switzerland.  She made her formal début at the Wigmore Hall in March 1961 accompanied by Ernest Lush. It was her concerto début in March 1962 at the Royal Festival Hall, performing the Elgar Cello Concerto that propelled her career into the stratosphere – bringing spontaneous critical enthusiasm followed by global recognition.

It is quite remarkable to think that Du Pre was just 17 years of age when she recorded this first recital disc for HMV. Whilst listening one cannot help but think this is an artist who has already lived life to the full; her interpretation has a profound and identifiable maturity that suggests a level of life experience well beyond her young years. Du Pre’s later struggle with ill health in her late 20’s, which tragically prevented her from continuing to play the cello makes listening to this remarkable recital even more poignant; Du Pre was without doubt one of the finest cellists of the 20th Century.

Original tape (side B).

Original tape (side B).

Original tape (side B) detail.

ERC sleeve and record.