Alick Maclean (1872 – 1936) recorded far more extensively than people realize, for both Columbia and HMV, often with the New Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra. He also appears on a 1932 Pathe newsreel conducting in a bandstand on the promenade at Scarborough with the Scarborough Spa Orchestra which he conducted from 1911 to 1935 – an operatic selection, from Thomas’s Mignon.

Verdi – Aida – Selection
The New Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra, Alick Maclean

Verdi – Aida – selection – NQHLO, Maclean
(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia L 1439
Matrices 75089-2, 75090-2
Recorded 11th May 1922, London
Available from 10/1922 to 2/1928
(Intended replacement on AX491-2; 492-2; recorded 2nd July 1924 conducted by Eugene Goossens II; test pressings made; but not issued)
80.3rpm

Grieg – Peer Gynt Suite

Part 1. Morning
Part 2. Death of Ase
a) Anitra’s Dance; (b) Dance of the Imps
Solveig’s Song

New Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra, Alick Maclean

Mediafire link for Grieg – Peer Gynt Suite (1923) – Alick Maclean

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia L 1516-7
Matrices 75010-6, 75011-3, 75012-6, 75023-6 (3896/9)
Recorded 9th May 1923, London
Available from January 1924 to February 1928

Georg Schneevoigt’s well known late 1920s recordings of the Peer Gynt Suite’s were with the same orchestra that Alick Maclean conducts here. Maclean trims the second repeat from Anitra’s Dance, ending at the first time bar, allowing the Hall of the Mountain King (or Dance of the Imps as the label has it) to fit onto the same side. This means the fourth side of the set can be used for Solveig’s Song (which is taken slowly enough that the coda, a repeat of the opening, is omitted.) The orchestra is clearly smaller, to fit into the Columbia acoustic studio, and there is substantial rescoring to allow for the acoustic process. Anitra’s Dance has noticeable added woodwind, and the Mountain King gains a rather effective bell! Some of the string lines in Solveig’s Song receive woodwind support (including a lovely oboe solo.)

Bizet – Carmen selection
New Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra, Alick Maclean

Bizet – Carmen – selection – Maclean

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia L1485
Matrices 76991-2, 76992-2
Recorded 10th May 1923