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First Philharmonic: A History of the Royal Philharmonic Society (Hardback)
  • First Philharmonic: A History of the Royal Philharmonic Society (Hardback)
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First Philharmonic: A History of the Royal Philharmonic Society (Hardback)

(author)
£97.00
Hardback 316 Pages / Published: 25/05/1995
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Established by musicians in 1813, the Philharmonic is the world's second oldest concert society; only Leipzig is senior. Weber and Mendelssohn were active honorary members; Joachim and Clara Schumann lifelong friends. The list of gold medalists runs from Elgar and Beecham to Sibelius, Rachmaninov, and Tippett. Most instrumentalists and many singers of international repute mounted its platforms. Berlioz, Wagner, Tchaikovsky, Grieg, Dvorak and Strauss came to preside over their music. Celebrating a venerable institution, this history, based upon exhaustive research in the Society's archives, also addresses wider themes, which continue to bear upon concert life: the evolution of repertoire and performance, audience, agent and conductor; networks of recruitment; patronage and the market place; the collective biography and proliferation of London orchestras; the economics of fees and rehearsals. Shaw once claimed that the Philharmonic's generosity towards Beethoven was the only creditable incident in English history, and never mentioned by historians. A leading authority on the economic and social history of music now attempts to repair that omission.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198162322
Number of pages: 316
Weight: 697 g
Dimensions: 241 x 161 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
There have been earlier histories of the Royal Philharmonic Society, but Professor Ehrlich's is the most comprehensive and readable. * Michael Kennedy, Sunday Telegraph *
The reader...wil be surprised and delighted by this masterly study. Cyril Ehrlich, doyen of social historians of music, has achieved a remarkable fusion: an entertaining, readable, chronological account packed with lively incident and vivid character sketches that at the same time gives a true picture of the stresses that are faced by a developing institution over nearly two centuries. * American Historical Review *
His style is engagingly crisp and he enlivens his narrative with numerous cameos, as economical as they are entertaining. * Ian McIntyre, The Times *
It is a mark of the cool and discriminating intelligence which Cyril Ehrlich brings to this commissioned history of the society that he does not wallow in the detail of the story ... His style is engagingly crisp and he enlivens his narrative with numerous cameos, as economical as they are entertaining * Ian McIntyre, The Times *
There have been earlier histories of the Royal Philharmonic Society, but Professor Ehrlich's is the most comprehensive and readable. * Michael Kennedy, Sunday Telegraph *
Cyril Ehrlich's book is a thorough and fascinating history of a Society whose active honorary members included Weber, Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann and Joachim, and which could count on Berlioz, Wagner, Tchaikovsky, Grieg, Dvo`rak Strauss to oversee performances of their own works * BBC Music Magazine *
Cyril Ehrlich has admirably charted the fortunes, musical and financial, of a venerable institution that has occasionally seemed bent on suicide and has inspired many a funeral oration ... the book will reveal itself as a mine of memorable moments. It is attractively produced and conscientiously proof-read. * The Musical Times *
A scrupulously researched, well-written history...Highly recommended. * Choice *
Ehrlich's study of the Royal Philharmonic Society is an authoritative history of this august body. While the author is to be congratulated on his achievement, the Society, too, is to be congratulated on choosing the author as its official historian. * The Economic History Review *
This is the fourth published history of the Society. Ehrlich has a broader viewpoint than his predecessors ... and he has probed more deeply into the available records. His writing is engaging and witty, and offers some penetrating insights. * Times Literary Supplement *
The reader fearing a routine hagiography of a venerable musical institution will be surprised and delighted by this masterly study. Cyril Ehrlich, doyen of social historians of music, has achieved a remarkable fusion: an entertaining, readable, chronological account packed with lively incident and vivid character sketches ... fine book * American Historical Review, February 1997 *

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