sabato 11 aprile 2009

Angela Amato-Bernard Van Dieren, Eiluned Davies, Olga Wilson and some Concerts Reviews

Bernard van Dieren

Bernard van Dieren is one of those composers whose name is better known than his music. During his lifetime he was regarded as a somewhat mysterious figure. His music was praised by Walton and Warlock, by Busoni and Schoenberg, and yet today his works are scarcely ever heard. Bernard Hélène Joseph van Dieren was born and educated in Rotterdam. In company with a fellow musician from Rotterdam, Frida Kindler (1879-1964) he moved to London in 1909 and they married on New Year’s Day 1910. Frida was a superb pianist, a pupil of Busoni; and the Italian master in turn was to have a profound influence on the young Bernard. His style changed rapidly from the conventional late Romantic to the Atonal, as epitomised by the songs of 1907-8 and the piano Sketches of 1910-1911, the latter being an idiom close to Busoni’s Sonatina Seconda. In 1912 he began to suffer from a progressive and incurable infection of the kidneys, involving recurrent attacks of renal stone, so painful as to require morphia for their relief. Coincidentally, his musical style became much less radical, and more tonally based, though the writing was still largely polyphonic. Van Dieren’s younger English friends, including Warlock, Cecil Gray, the Sitwells and Epstein helped to promote his music. In the 1920’s and 1930’s many of the smaller pieces were published and some of the larger works were performed in the composer’s last years, and just after his death by the BBC, under the direction of Edward Clark and Constant Lambert. With the onset of World War II and the early deaths of a number of his active disciples (Gray and Lambert in 1951: baritone John Goss in 1953) his music slipped out of the performing repertoire. By the 1960’s his work had sunk into that oblivion from which it isonly now emerging.

Angela Amato
Eiluned Davies
Olga Wilson

The Concert at London Prince Consort Road with Bach Double

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