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Dyson Retires

Donald Macleod discusses Dyson's work in retirement, which included administering the Royal College of Organists and the Carnegie UK Trust, and writing various large choral works.

Celebrated composer, broadcaster, teacher, and author of the first manual on hand grenade use, this week Donald Macleod explores the life and music of Sir George Dyson.

Donald Macleod, in the company of biographer, Paul Spicer, visits the Royal College of Music, an institution that played a significant part in the life of Sir George Dyson. Dyson had taken his responsibilities as Director of the RCM very seriously but, with the added pressures caused by the the Second World War and its aftermath, he announced his retirement from the post in 1952. Dyson had made a significant impact upon the profile and standard of the college, but had also amazingly found time to compose as well, including the second part of Quo Vadis and his Concerto leggiero.

In retirement, Dyson was still exceptionally busy, including positions as President of the Royal College of Organists and Chairman of the Carnegie UK Trust. He also had something of an Indian summer, composing a number of large choral works, including Sweet Thames Run Softly, Agincourt, and Hierusalem. He died in 1964 but his presence is still felt at the Royal College, not least because of the large portrait of Sir George Dyson hanging near the director's office.

1 hour

Last on

Fri 3 Oct 2014 18:30

Music Played

  • Sir George Dyson

    Concerto leggiero - Vivace

    Performer: City of London Sinfonia. Performer: Eric Parkin. Conductor: Richard Hickox.
    • CHANDOS : CHAN-9076.
    • CHANDOS.
  • Sir George Dyson

    Hierusalem

    Conductor: Jonathan Rennert. Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Performer: Thomas Trotter. Choir: St. Michael’s Singers. Singer: Valery Hill.
    • Hyperion: CDA66150.
    • Hyperion.
    • 1.
  • Sir George Dyson

    The Canterbury pilgrims - L envoi

    Orchestra: London S O.. Choir: London Symphony Chorus. Singer: Stephen Roberts. Singer: Robert Tear. Singer: Yvonne Kenny.
    • CHANDOS : CHAN-9532.
    • CHANDOS.
    • 6.
  • Sir George Dyson

    God moves in a mysterious way (Variations on Old Psalm Tunes, Book 1)

    Performer: Peter Dyke.
    • Priory: PRCD1029.
    • 4.
  • Sir George Dyson

    Quo vadis - They are at rest

    Singer: Roderick Williams. Singer: Cheryl Barker. Singer: Jean Rigby. Orchestra: BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Conductor: Richard Hickox. Choir: BBC National Chorus of Wales. Singer: Philip Langridge.
    • CHANDOS : CHAN-10061.
    • CHANDOS.
    • 5.

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