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Playing: Quartet for piano and strings No.1 (Op.25) in G minor by Johannes Brahms
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A Mysterious Death

Duration:
1 hour
First broadcast:
Friday 03 December 2010

"Old Raspberry", commonly known as Jack Moeran, was a pioneer in the collecting of British folk music - as a composer he was greatly inspired by nature - and was involved in many tales of nudity, drunkenness and reckless driving that originated from his time living with Peter Warlock.

Jack Moeran in the second half of his life, met the cellist Peers Coetmore. Donald Macleod follows their relationship, which eventually blossomed into marriage, but was not a huge success. On the eve of his wedding, Jack confessed to a friend that he thought the marriage would be a disaster. This relationship did however inspire Moeran to compose a number of works for Peers, including a Prelude, Sonata and his Cello Concerto.

Moeran started to become aware of his failing health in the last few years of his life. He was desperately trying to work on his second symphony, back in the setting of Kenmare which he loved so much, but found that he could not concentrate for sustained periods of time. On one stormy night, he fell from the pier into the Kenmare river. Although some presumed he was drunk, or with his increasing mental instability maybe he took his life, the inquest in fact found that he'd had a stroke.

This programme includes an interview of Moeran from 1947, discussing his wish to complete his second symphony back in Kenmare - a task he was never to fulfil.

Music Played

5 items
Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes
  • Image for Ernest John Moeran

    Ernest John Moeran The White Mountain (1927)

    Performer: Una Hunt, pianist

    ASV CDDCA1138

  • Image for Ernest John Moeran

    Ernest John Moeran Prelude for cello and piano (1944)

    Performer: Peers Coetmore, cello, Eric Parkin, piano

    Lyrita SRCD299

  • Image for Ernest John Moeran

    Ernest John Moeran Overture for a Masque (1944)

    Performer: Ulster Orchestra, Vernon Handley, conductor

    Chandos CHAN10169X

  • Image for Ernest John Moeran

    Ernest John Moeran arr. Desmond Ratcliffe

    Performer: Irish Elegy Performer: City Chamber Choir of London, Stephen Jones, conductor

    BMS 417CD

  • Image for Ernest John Moeran

    Ernest John Moeran Cello Concerto (1945)

    Performer: Raphael Wallfisch, cello, Bournemouth Sinfonietta Performer: Norman Del Mar, conductor

    Chandos CHAN8456

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