Damian's 78s (and a few early LPs)

Historic recordings remastered. Not a sales list!

Landon Ronald’s Midsummer Night’s Dream

For Shakespeare’s birthday back in April, I made available the Scherzo from Mendelssohn’s Midsummer Night’s Dream music, in a 1911 recording conducted by Landon Ronald. To complement this, I’ve now transferred the Ronald’s early recordings of the Overture, Nocturne and Wedding March, together with his later electrically recorded version of the Nocturne. I’ve included the Scherzo in this post so the whole set can play continuously. As a  bonus, at the end I’ve included the Ronald’s recording of the overture to Nicolai’s Merry Wives of Windsor, which was coupled with the Midsummer Night’s Dream overture.

Ronald recorded the Mendelssohn works several times.

New Symphony Orchestra:

7th October 1911 – A Midsummer Night‘s Dream: Scherzo (Mendelssohn)
ac5549f (unissued)
ac5550f  0681 (020617, 030617, 060562, D152)

10th February 1912 – A Midsummer Night‘s Dream: Wedding march (Mendelssohn)
ac6007f (unissued)
ac6008f   0755   (030627, 040737, 2-050521, 2-0250599, D166, S4190, W74, ES123)

17th February 1912 – A Midsummer Night‘s Dream: Nocturne (Mendelssohn)
ac6035f (unissued)
ac6036f   0756   (030628, 040738, D152, ES123)

3rd February 1913 – A Midsummer Night‘s Dream: Overture (Mendelssohn)
HO450ai   0853   (020747, 060601, D153, AB102)

Royal Albert Hall Orchestra:

13th March 1923 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Wedding March (Mendelssohn)
Cc 2695-1 (unissued)
Cc 2695-2   0755X   (D166, 2-050521X, 2-0250599X, S4190)

23rd June 1923 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream Op 61: Scherzo (Mendelssohn)
Cc 3145-1 (unissued)
Cc 3145-2   0681X   (D152)

27th July 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Nocturne (Mendelssohn), pt 1
Cc 6411-1 (unissued)
Cc 6411-2 (unissued)
27th July 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Nocturne (Mendelssohn), pt 2
Cc 6412-1 (unissued)
Cc 6412-2   4-0733   (D1034, AB169)
27th July 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Scherzo (Mendelssohn)
Cc 6413-1   4-0836   (D1097, W918, AB198, ES26)

9th September 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Nocturne (Mendelssohn), pt 1
Cc 6411-3,-4 (unissued)
Cc 6411-5   4-0732 (D1034, AB169)

18th November 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Mendelssohn), pt 1
Cc 7310-1 (unissued)
Cc 7310-2 (assigned 4-0858, but unissued)
18th November 1925 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Mendelssohn), pt 2
Cc 7311-1 (unissued)
Cc 7311-2 (assigned 4-0852, but unissued)

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Overture – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice D153 (side 0853)
Matrix HO 450ai
Recorded 3rd February 1913, Hayes
The following cuts are made: bb 142 – 157, 196(4) – 517(3), 566 – 585, 620 – end. (inclusive)

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Scherzo – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice 0681
Matrix ac5550f
Recorded 7th October 1911, London

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Nocturne – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice 0756
Matrix ac6036f
Recorded 17th February 1912, London
The following cuts are made: bb16-33, 38-41, 73-80, 109-112

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Wedding March – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice 0755
Matrix ac6008f
Recorded 10th February 1912, London

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Nocturne – Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

Aubrey Brain, horn
His Master’s Voice D 1034 (sides 4-0732/3)
Matrices Cc 6411-5, Cc 6412-2
Recorded 9th September 1925 and 27th July 1925, Hayes

Nicolai – The Merry Wives of Windsor – Overture – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice D153 (side 0735)
Matrix al5934f
Recorded 20th January 1912, Hayes
The recording begins at the Allegro, and several cuts are made.

400 years

Although I have had not had a great deal of time to work on recordings for this site recently, I could not let the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death pass unmarked. There are several spoken word Shakespeare recordings to be found on site and music based on his works (just enter Shakespeare in the search box). But as a new addition, I have transferred Landon Ronald’s 1911 recording of the Scherzo from Mendelssohn’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Music.

Mendelssohn – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Scherzo – New Symphony Orchestra, Landon Ronald

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

His Master’s Voice 0681
Matrix ac5550f
Recorded 7th October 1911, London

Another great writer, Miguel de Cervantes died on the same day as Shakespeare. He is best remembered for Don Quixote, and to celebrate this anniversary, I’ve transferred Chaliapin’s 1927 recording of the death of Don Quixote, from Massenet’s opera.

Massenet – Don Quixote – The Death of Don Quixote (Act 5) – Fyodor Chaliapin

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

Fyodor Chaliapin (bass) as Don Quixote and Sancho Panza
Olive Kline (soprano) as the voice of Dulcinea
Orchestra, Rosario Bourdon
His Master’s Voice DB 1096
Matrices CVE-38334-I, 38335-I (sides 2-032114/5)
Recorded 7th April 1927, Liederkranz Hall, New York for Victor.

Lilian Bryant conducts and plays the piano

This update is by way of tribute to one of the significant contributors to the UK recording industry. Lilian Bryant was a pianist and conductor, and was the musical director of the Pathéphone Company, Ltd. in London. There are numerous orchestral recordings on which she is the conductor, including several popular overtures. She is likely to be the conductor or piano accompanist on numerous British Pathé vocal recordings, often uncredited. She also recorded piano solos for Columbia (and Regal) several of which were issued in Holland, where she was known as the accompanist of violinists Alfred Indig and Boris Lensky (and is credited as such on the record labels). She also crops up on the unusual Chantal de Luxe label (manufactured by Crystalate), conducting for the baritone Louis Lynel. This unusual recording and a number of her piano records are given below. The piano solos are mainly of popular songs of the day, very much in lighter mood, though she did record some popular classical pieces as well. These include the only electrical recording in the current batch, of Wagner’s Bridal Chorus, and Mendelssohn’s Wedding March. I also have several English Pathés which she may appear on as uncredited accompanist, but I’ve not yet restored them.

Drigo – Les Millions d’Arlequin – Sérénade
Toselli – Serenade
Orchestra, Lilian Bryant
Louis Lynel,
baritone

Drigo – Arlequin – Serenade – Lynel, Bryant

Toselli – Serenade – Lynel, Bryant

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

Chantal de Luxe No 1175
Matrices 2489, 2490
Recorded 1920s

Vliegpostmarsch
Slavische Serenade
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Vliegpostmarsch – Lilian Bryant

Slavische Serenade – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9061
Matrices 68965, 68966
Recorded 1923?

M Yvain – Pays de Rêve
Otto Helmburgh-Holmes – Electric Girl (Shimmy Fox-Trot)
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Yvain – Pays de Rêve – Lilian Bryant

Helmburgh-Holmes – Electric Girl – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9063
Matrices 68990, 68991
Recorded 1923?

Kálman – Die Bayadere – Wenn die Sterne am Himmel leuchten (Fox-Trot)
Hugo Hirsch – Wenn du einmal eine Braut hast
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Kálman – Wenn die Sterne – Lilian Bryant

Hirsch – Wenn du einmal – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9064
Matrices 68992, 68993
Recorded 1923?

Gaston Gabaroche & Fred Pearly – Je n’peux pas vivre sans amour
Theo A Körner – Wenn man allein ist
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Gabaroche & Pearly – Je n’peux pas – Lilian Bryant

Körner – Wenn man allein ist – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9066
Matrices 68996, 68997
Recorded 1923?

S Ehrlich – Willst du eine kleine haben (Shimmy Fox-Trot)
Armandola – Hawaiian Memories, Wals
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Ehrlich – Willst du eine kleine haben – Lilian Bryant

Armandola – Hawaiian Memories – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9085
Matrices F6, F7 (15896, 15897)
Recorded 1923?

Wagner – Bruidskoor (uit Lohengrin)
(Bridal Chorus from Lohengrin, Act 3)
Mendelssohn – Hochzeits Marsch
(Wedding March from Midsummer Night’s Dream)
Lilian Bryant,
piano

Wagner – Bridal chorus (Lohengrin) – Lilian Bryant

Mendelssohn – Wedding March – Lilian Bryant

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

Columbia D9846 (electrical recording)
Matrices WF236, WF237 (21546, 21547)
Recorded 1926?

Shakespeare recordings by pupils of the Guildhall School of Music, Basil Maine and John Gielgud; Albert Coates conducts Siegfried’s Funeral March

Today marks the anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth and death, and is also St. George’s Day. To mark the first of these, there are two quite different Shakespeare recordings from 78s, which are linked by a review in Gramophone magazine. Then there’s a set of Linguaphone recordings of John Gielgud performing Shakespeare. This is different to the set that has appeared here previously (though he does perform some of the same excerpts.)

Today is also the anniversary of the birth of the conductor Albert Coates, so I present here his 1926 recording of Siegfried’s Funeral March from Götterdämmerung.

Shakespeare – As You Like It: Rosalind’s Speech, Act III, Scene V
Miss Margaret Littlefair,
actor
Shakespeare – Twelfth Night: Garden Scene Duologue, Olivia and Viola, Act III, Scene 1
Miss Winifred Cain,
actor
Miss Bronwen Rees, actor

Shakespeare – As You Like It: Rosalind’s Speech – Littlefair

Shakespeare – Twelfth Night: Garden Scene – Cain, Rees

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

Columbia 4396
Matrices WA 3717-3, 3715-2 (23549, 23547)
Recorded 1927
Available from June 1927

Paul Berton, BA, BCI, FGSM, Professor of Dramatic Art and Declamation at the Guildhall School of Music, with the aid of some of his students, made the following 8 recordings demonstrating his principle of “Logical-Rhetorical Dissection of Speech”

This is the third of four records. This set was roundly demolished in a review in Gramophone in August 1927:

You all know the lines about little victims heedless of their doom, and here have I been sitting hard at work to-day quite unaware of the doom in store for me in a little heap of unplayed records. This afternoon the blow fell. I have played them all through, and if I say that they are more depressing than any recent weather forecast I shall actually be understating their effect. These records, four in number from Columbia, are announced as follows :–” TRAINING FOR SPEAKING. A Series of Columbia Records of Declamatory Art Demonstrating the Logical-Rhetorical Dissection of Speech by the Students of Paul Berton, B.A., etc., Professor of the Guildhall School of Music.”

…I find in these four records every fault of the professional elocutionist. It is all very well to dissect Shakespeare, but there is surely no reason why he should be murdered first, for murdered he is by these pupils of Mons. Paul Berton. Miss Winifred Cain has a really good voice; if she were properly taught she might make a good Shakespearian actress, and I am not sure that something might not be made of Miss Bronwen Rees. But no amount of logical-rhetorical dissection can compensate for the monotonous two notes, which is all that Mons. Berton seems to allow his pupils. I am aware that most Rosalinds rebuke their Phoebes in the style of a coy governess, but this particular version of the speech by Miss Margaret Littlefair outdoes all previous Rosalinds.

…It is dreadful to think what may be going on under our ears all the time without our being aware of it. I don’t know how long Mons. Berton has been a professor of declamation and dramatic art at the Guildhall School of Music, but he has evidently been there long enough to write a book about it, and a fine nonsensical piece of work it seems to be, to judge by the extracts. I had never thought of the Guildhall School of Music as a dangerous institution until I played through these records to-day.

….these elocutionary records are not a success, and I shall not send any of my young friends to the Guildhall School of Music. Does Shakespeare pay ? No, and he never will pay until we can get somebody to act him. Mr. Basil Maine the other night read three or four lines from Shakespeare so well that I wish he would record John of Gaunt’s glorious speech. Then there is the chief announcer of the B.B.C. He knows how to read. It is all very fine to have a Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, but we shall soon have to start a Society for the Protection of Ancient Poetry, with appeals to The Times signed by Mr. J. C. Squire, etc., calling on the public to help in preserving Hamlet’s soliloquies from logical rhetorical dissection. Columbia ! Columbia ! Why did you publish these records ?

The Gramophone reviewer’s request was soon answered, as Basil Maine made a number of recordings, both for HMV in 1929, and for Parlophone a little later, including John o’Gaunt’s speech from Richard II.

Shakespeare – Richard II – John o’Gaunt’s Speech
Shakespeare – Macbeth – The Dagger Speech
Basil Maine,
actor

Shakespeare – Richard II – John o’Gaunt –  Maine

Shakespeare – Macbeth – Dagger – Maine

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

Parlophone E5987
Matrices W1549, W1550
Recorded c1930

Around 1930, John Gielgud recorded a number of Shakespearian excerpts for Linguaphone. These were issued on five 78s, and have been available on this site before, but they are available to download again below. Some years later, Gielgud recorded again for Linguaphone, another set of five 78s. He is named as Sir John Gielgud on the labels, which places the records no earlier than 1953. There are a few overlaps with the earlier set, but most selections are new. In both sets, the records are numbered only by matrix – there are no disc numbers.

Shakespeare – excerpts from plays and Sonnets – Sir John Gielgud

Mediafire link for Shakespeare – excerpts – Gielgud (c1953)

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

Linguaphone – Shakespeare Series A
Matrices given below
Recorded c1953

ENG 242-2 – Much Ado About Nothing (Act 2, Scene 3)
ENG 243-2 – King Richard the Second (Act 3, Scene 2); Sonnet XXX
ENG 244 – King Richard the Second (Act 3, Scene 3); King Henry the Fifth (Act 1, Scene 1)
ENG 245 – Romeo and Juliet (Act 1, Scene 4)
ENG 246-2 – Romeo and Juliet (Act 5, Scene 3); Cymbeline (Act 4, Scene 2)
ENG 247 – Hamlet (Act 2, Scene 2)
ENG 248 – Hamlet (Act 4, Scene 4); Measure for Measure (Act 2, Scene 2)
ENG 249-2 – Richard II (Act 3, Scene 3)
ENG 250-2 – Henry V (Act 4, Scene 1)
ENG 251-2 – Macbeth (Act 1, Scene 7); Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5); The Tempest (Act 4, Scene 1)

Shakespeare – excerpts from plays and Sonnets – John Gielgud

Mediafire link for Shakespeare – excerpts – Gielgud (c1930)

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

Linguaphone – Shakespearian Records by John Gielgud
Matrices given below
Recorded c1930

EEG.28E – The Merchant of Venice – Gratiano’s Speech (Act 1, Scene 1); As You Like It – Jaques’ Speech (Act 2, Scene 7)
EEG.29E – King Richard the Second – John of Gaunt’s Speech (Act 2, Scene 1); Sonnet CXVI
EEG.30E – As You Like It – Jaques’ Speech (Act 2, Scene 7); The Tempest – Prospero’s Speech (Act 4, Scene 1)
EEG.32E – King Henry the Fifth – King Henry’s Speech (Act 2, Scene 1); King Henry the Fourth – Hotspur’s Speech (Act 1, Scene 3)
EEG.33E – Othello – Othello’s Speech (Act 1, Scene 3)
EEG.34E – Hamlet – Hamlet’s Speech (Act 2, Scene 2)
EEG.35E – Hamlet – Hamlet’s Speech (Act 4, Scene 4); Sonnet XVIII
EEG.36E – Richard II – King Richard’s Speech (Act 3, Scene 3)
EEG.37E – Henry V – King Henry’s Speech (Act 4, Scene 3)
EEG.38E – Midsummer Night’s Dream – Oberon’s Speech (Act 3, Scene 1); Oberon’s Speech (Act 3, Scene 2); Puck’s Speech (Act 3, Scene 2)

Albert Coates is without doubt one of my favourite conductors, though I haven’t featured him here very much at all. To celebrate his birthday, I’ve remastered his 1926 recording of Siegfried’s Funeral March from Wagner’s Götterdämmerung.

Wagner – The Twilight of the Gods – Siegfried’s Funeral March
Symphony Orchestra, Albert Coates

Wagner – The Twilight of the Gods – Funeral March – Coates

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

His Master’s Voice D1092
Matrices CR 217-II, 141-III (4-0837/8)
Recorded 26th March, 25th January 1926, Queen’s Hall, London