Wednesday, 9 March 2011


The concert at the Musée d'Orsay went splendidly.... Malcolm Martineau was naturally a joy to work with, and audience were fully appreciative. They enjoyed our French intros, and laughed a lot.

We were delighted to have concocted a programme which involved so many artists and poets caught up in the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. Also pleased to make MM play Flash, Bang, Wallop from David Heneker's Half a Sixpence for the first time! [Also, thanks to our friend Hubert Drac for providing some French translation for this song, so it was not relentlessly cockney... As we were on at lunchtime we were pleased Hubert could see the gig, as otherwise he is playing in Henry IV - le bien aimé in Théatre des Mathurins.]
Good to have a Tommy Steele number nestling amongst, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Longfellow, Lord Tennyson, Sullivan [with and without Gilbert], William Morris, Vaughan-Williams, Elgar, Robert Pearsall, Hildegard of Bingen, Haydn, Shakespeare & William Byrd.

At Malcolm's suggestion we also included a superb Joyce Grenfell song [with music from her great collaborator, Richard Addinsell] which mentions all the Pre-Raphaelites, Oh Mr Du Maurier.

We ended the programme with Photograph by Antonio Carlos Jobim.

There was a fabulous typo on the programme... right up there with the excellent Hilliard example:

David James:- Counter tenor
Rogers Covey:- Crump tenor

We provided the items for the programme piece first followed by creators; the French having decided to change this order, it came out thus:
William Byrd - Agnus Dei from The Mass for Four Voices
Harold Edwin Darke - In the Bleak Midwinter
Maud Michael William Balfe - Come into the Garden
Herr Balfe must be revolving in his grave.... or do the people at the Musée know more than we do about his tastes!?

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