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Donald Macleod explores Gordon Jacob's and Joseph Horovitz's early years, fighting in, and fleeing from war.

This week Donald Macleod is joined by composer Joseph Horovitz, who not only talks about his own career, but also that of his one-time teacher Gordon Jacob; both have had a significant impact upon students at the Royal College of Music, and both have been prolific in writing concertos, and music for wind and brass. Gordon Jacob composed over 400 works, and was so successful in his lifetime, he was asked to write music for the coronation of the Queen. Jacob spent much of his time tutoring at the Royal College of Music, where he taught Joseph Horovitz. Horovitz likewise went on to teach at the Royal College of Music, and has composed such notable works as his Clarinet Sonatina, the theme music to Rumpole of the Bailey and Lillie, plus a work which won him an Ivor Novello Award, his cantata Captain Noah and His Floating Zoo.

Gordon Jacob came from a military background, and retained wonderful memories of his childhood in London with barrel organs, dancing bears, and German bands. Writing music for wind and brass bands became a profitable and enjoyable enterprise for Jacob, including his "An Original Suite for Military Band". A military life was not for Jacob however, though he did spend time serving on the frontline in WWI. It was during the Great War that he lost one of his closest brothers, Anstey, and he dedicated his First Symphony to him.

Joseph Horovitz, who joins Donald Macleod to talk about his music, and that of his one-time teacher Gordon Jacob, was also a victim of war, having to flee Austria at the beginning of WWII. Horovitz's formative experiences influenced his biographical Fifth String Quartet. Arriving to safety in Britain, Horovitz had to learn a new culture and language. This adopting of other languages is also present in his music, such as exploring the musical language of jazz in the Jazz Concerto for Piano, Strings and Percussion.

Joseph Horovitz
Rumpole of the Bailey (1977)
Studio Musicians

Gordon Jacob
An Original Suite for Military Band (1928)
The Regimental Band of the Coldstream Guards
Major Graham Jones, director

Gordon Jacob
Festal Flourish (1958)
Colin Walsh, organ

Gordon Jacob
Lento e mesto from Symphony No.1 (1929)
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Barry Wordsworth, conductor

Joseph Horovitz
String Quartet No.5 (1969)
Carducci Quartet

Joseph Horovitz
Slow Blues & Vivace from Jazz Concerto for Piano, Strings and Percussion (1965)
Royal Ballet Sinfonia
David Owen Norris, piano
Joseph Horovitz, conductor.

1 hour

Music Played

  • Joseph Horovitz

    Rumpole of the Bailey

    Performer: Studio Musicians

    • Columbia: DB9143.
  • Gordon Jacob

    An Original Suite for Military Band

    Performers: The Regimental Band of the Coldstream Guards Director: Major Graham Jones

    • SRC:108.
    • 1.
  • Gordon Jacob

    Festal Flourish

    Performers: Colin Walsh, organ

    • Priory: PRCD379.
    • 1.
  • Gordon Jacob

    Lento e mesto from Symphony no 1

    Performer: London Philharmonic Orchestra conductor: Barry Wordsworth,

    • Lyrita: SRCD315.
    • 2.
  • Joseph Horovitz

    String Quartet no 5

    Performers: Carducci Quartet

    • CSQ6482.
    • 8.
  • Joseph Horovitz

    Slow Blues and Vivace from Jazz Concerto for Piano and Strings and Percussion

    Performers: Royal Ballet Sinfonia, Performer: David Owen Norris (piano) Conductor: Joseph Horovitz

    • Dutton.
    • CDLX7188.

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