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Thurston Dart - Handel: Water Music - Mozart: Epistle Sonatas

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Handel: Water Music - Mozart: Epistle Sonatas

Thurston Dart - George Szell - Boyd Neel

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Handel orchestral favourites from the 1950s in a winning combination of old-school polish and unaffected stylistic refinement.


With this and several other albums, Eloquence celebrates the art of Thurston Dart, the harpsichordist, conductor and editor who played a leading role in the early-music revival in postwar Britain. After his death in 1971 at the age of just 49, his fellow harpsichordist Igor Kipnis paid fulsome tribute to ‘a man of many parts’, whose 1954 volume on The Interpretation of Music had attained testamentary authority among his fellow musicians, matched by the skill, style and flourish of his many recordings: ‘He was the ideal musicologist-performer.’
Kipnis singled out this 1959 L’Oiseau-Lyre recording of the Water Music as a classic. Alongside the legendary winds-only account of the Fireworks Music led by Sir Charles Mackerras it was chosen by Stereo Review in 1964 as a defining album in a general introduction to Baroque culture: ‘I cannot think of two other Baroque recordings that I could recommend more unreservedly.’ Dart and his colleague Brian Priestman attempted to reassemble the whole of the Water Music as it had first been heard, on a fine summer’s evening in 1717, played on barges sailing down the Thames. The LP format had necessitated the omission of some repeats in the music, but that ‘the orchestration on this disc is Handel’s throughout – he was one of the most skilful orchestrators of the 18th century, and may be presumed to have understood what he was doing’.
The couplings are drawn from a pair of Decca albums: overtures directed by Boyd Neel (in 1954) and George Szell (in 1961) with a chaste restraint and lively rhythmic precision that complements the extrovert fantasy of Dart’s performing instincts. Added are two of the Mozart Epistle Sonatas recorded in 1956. (© Decca Music Group Limited / Universal Music Australia Pty Ltd.)


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Handel: Water Music - Mozart: Epistle Sonatas

Thurston Dart

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Water Music Suite - Water Music Suite in F Major HWV 348 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

1
1. Overture
Philomusica of London
00:03:07

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

2
2. Adagio e staccato
Philomusica of London
00:02:15

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

3
3. Hornpipe and Andante
Philomusica of London
00:07:59

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

4
4. Jig
Philomusica of London
00:02:42

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

5
5. Air
Philomusica of London
00:03:00

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

6
6. Minuet
Philomusica of London
00:02:34

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

7
7. Gavotte
Philomusica of London
00:02:36

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

8
8. Bourée and Hornpipe
Philomusica of London
00:02:31

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

Water Music Suite - Water Music Suite in G Major HWV 350 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

9
19. Menuet & Trio
Philomusica of London
00:03:27

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

10
17. Rigaudon I and II
Philomusica of London
00:01:54

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

11
20. Gigue
Philomusica of London
00:01:16

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

12
21. Minuet I - Minuet II - Country Dance
Philomusica of London
00:00:54

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

Water Music Suite - Water Music Suite in D Major HWV 349 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

13
11. Prelude
Philomusica of London
00:02:19

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

14
12. Hornpipe
Philomusica of London
00:03:24

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

15
14. Lentement
Philomusica of London
00:01:16

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

16
15. Bourée
Philomusica of London
00:00:50

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

17
13. Minuet
Philomusica of London
00:01:58

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Director - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Recording Producers: unidentified

℗ 1960 Decca Music Group Limited

Alcina, HWV 34 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

18
Overture
Boyd Neel Orchestra
00:06:29

Boyd Neel Orchestra - Boyd Neel, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Ludovico Ariosto, Original Text Author - Peter Andry, Recording Producer - Balance Engineers: unidentified

℗ 1954 Decca Music Group Limited

Berenice, HWV 38 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

19
Overture
Boyd Neel Orchestra
00:07:11

Boyd Neel Orchestra - Boyd Neel, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Ludovico Ariosto, Original Text Author - Peter Andry, Recording Producer - Balance Engineers: unidentified

℗ 1954 Decca Music Group Limited

Il Pastor Fido HWV 8c (Georg Friedrich Händel)

20
Menuet
London Symphony Orchestra
00:03:22

London Symphony Orchestra - George Szell, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Sir Thomas Beecham, Work Arranger - Giacomo Rossi, Author - Giovanni Battista Guarini, Original Text Author - John Culshaw, Recording Producer - Kenneth Wilkinson, Balance Engineer

℗ 1961 Decca Music Group Limited

Serse, HWV 40 (Georg Friedrich Händel)

21
Largo
London Symphony Orchestra
00:05:29

London Symphony Orchestra - George Szell, Conductor - Georg Friedrich Händel, Composer - Nicolò Minato, Original Text Author - Silvio Stampiglia, Original Text Author - John Culshaw, Recording Producer - Kenneth Wilkinson, Balance Engineer

℗ 1961 Decca Music Group Limited

Epistle Sonata in F major, K. 244 (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart)

22
Epistle Sonata in F major, K. 244
Philomusica of London
00:03:29

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Conductor - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Composer - Recording Producers and Balance Engineers unidentified

℗ 1958 Decca Music Group Limited

23
Epistle Sonata in G major, K. 274
Philomusica of London
00:05:14

Philomusica of London - Thurston Dart, Conductor - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Composer - Recording Producers and Balance Engineers unidentified

℗ 1958 Decca Music Group Limited

Album Description


Handel orchestral favourites from the 1950s in a winning combination of old-school polish and unaffected stylistic refinement.


With this and several other albums, Eloquence celebrates the art of Thurston Dart, the harpsichordist, conductor and editor who played a leading role in the early-music revival in postwar Britain. After his death in 1971 at the age of just 49, his fellow harpsichordist Igor Kipnis paid fulsome tribute to ‘a man of many parts’, whose 1954 volume on The Interpretation of Music had attained testamentary authority among his fellow musicians, matched by the skill, style and flourish of his many recordings: ‘He was the ideal musicologist-performer.’
Kipnis singled out this 1959 L’Oiseau-Lyre recording of the Water Music as a classic. Alongside the legendary winds-only account of the Fireworks Music led by Sir Charles Mackerras it was chosen by Stereo Review in 1964 as a defining album in a general introduction to Baroque culture: ‘I cannot think of two other Baroque recordings that I could recommend more unreservedly.’ Dart and his colleague Brian Priestman attempted to reassemble the whole of the Water Music as it had first been heard, on a fine summer’s evening in 1717, played on barges sailing down the Thames. The LP format had necessitated the omission of some repeats in the music, but that ‘the orchestration on this disc is Handel’s throughout – he was one of the most skilful orchestrators of the 18th century, and may be presumed to have understood what he was doing’.
The couplings are drawn from a pair of Decca albums: overtures directed by Boyd Neel (in 1954) and George Szell (in 1961) with a chaste restraint and lively rhythmic precision that complements the extrovert fantasy of Dart’s performing instincts. Added are two of the Mozart Epistle Sonatas recorded in 1956. (© Decca Music Group Limited / Universal Music Australia Pty Ltd.)


Details of original recording : Walthamstow Assembly Hall, London, UK, January 1959 (Water Music); Decca Studio 3, West Hampstead, London, UK, 12, 21, 23, 26 & 27 July 1954 (Alcina, Berenice); Watford Town Hall, London, 27–29 August 1961 (Il Pastor Fido, Serse); London, UK, 1956 (Mozart)

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