From Melba To Sutherland

From Melba To Sutherland cover
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From Melba To Sutherland
Various Artists incls Nellie Melba, Joan Sutherland, Essie Ackland, Alfred Hill, Walter Kirby, Eileen Boyd, Harold Williams, Peter Dawson, etc

[ Decca Australian Eloquence / 4 CD ]

Release Date: Friday 30 September 2016

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From Melba to Sutherland: Australian Singers on Record is the first-ever comprehensive survey of the recordings of Australia's greatest singers - in a unique new four-CD set from Decca, complete with biographies of each of the 80 artists, rare photographs, all contained within a 68-page booklet.

Why has there been such an extraordinary procession of world-class Australian singers over such an extended period of time? The question is often asked, but there are no easy answers. For Australia to have produced Dame Nellie Melba and Dame Joan Sutherland, two of the most famous singers of the twentieth century, is in itself something like a miracle. But there are so many more - some 80 wonderful singers in total.

The compilation has been meticulously researched by music historian Roger Neill and recording industry expert Tony Locantro. It covers a wide range of musical genres, from opera to music hall and from art song to variety. Co-producer Roger Neill has said: 'Thirteen years in the making, From Melba to Sutherland is truly a once-in-a-lifetime project - the first-ever comprehensive survey of recordings by Australia's greatest singers.'

Included with the issue is a detailed booklet covering all of the recordings with brief biographies and rare photographs of the singers, and an overview of their teachers. Each of the recordings has been expertly remastered from best-available original sources.

Aside from Melba and Sutherland, other world-famous Australians included are: Peter Dawson, a baritone who concentrated his career on the newly-emerged recording medium, selling some thirteen million records in the fifty years from 1904. Florence Austral, an outstanding Wagnerian soprano. June Bronhill, who followed Joan Sutherland as Lucia di Lammermoor at Covent Garden, but who chose to make her career in operetta and musical comedy with spectacular success. Malcolm McEachern, the bass half of the best-selling Flotsam and Jetsam duo who was equally accomplished in classical repertoire. Dame Joan Hammond, whose 'Oh my beloved father' from Puccini's Gianni Schicchi was one of the best-selling classical discs of all time. Florrie Forde, one of the greatest music hall artists, whose hit songs included 'Down at the Old Bull and Bush', 'Tipperary' and 'Pack up your Troubles', and Richard Watson, the Adelaide-born bass who was a long-time principal with the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, singing the comic bass-baritone roles of the Savoy Operas.

Alongside these greats, several outstanding Australian singers have been re-discovered, their lives and recordings researched afresh. Many of them had become just names, nothing more. They include: Syria Lamonte, the first woman singer to be recorded professionally in Britain in 1898. Frances Saville, a leading soprano in Mahler's famous company in Vienna, who re-introduced several of the great Mozartian roles to the repertoire. Andrew Black, the only top-flight singer of Melba's generation who moved from Britain to Australia. Violet Mount, who, unable to break into the opera houses of Europe, made an outstanding career on the music halls singing operatic arias as the masked 'L'Incognita'. Lorna Sydney, who went to further her career in Vienna, but was interned as an alien during World War II. She became a leading member of the Vienna State Opera at the cessation of hostilities.

Also there are many extremely rare recordings included in the anthology, some of them existing in just a single instance. For example, there is a private recording of the great Australian baritone, Harold Williams, singing a rousing Cobb and Co song, 'John Bax'. Another great rarity is an unpublished test pressing by Florence Austral singing Brünnhilde's 'Battlecry' from Wagner's Die Walküre.

This high prestige project has been actively supported throughout by Richard Bonynge and the late Dame Joan Sutherland, who have written: 'It is wonderful to be able to hear these exceptional voices, singers of real quality. It is a mammoth collection and Australia can be proud to share her artists with the world.'

94 tracks across 4 CDs

CD 1
1-26 Melba, the Marchesi school and other early singers

CD 2
1-27 More early singers · Wagner and the dramatics · Music Hall and Variety

CD 3
1-21 Musical Theatre, Radio, Comedy · Singers after World War II

CD 4
1-20 More singers after World War II · Sutherland and her circle



NELLIE MELBA soprano 1861-1931
Gounod: Ah! Je ris (Jewel Song) (Faust)
Landon Ronald, piano Recorded: 4 September 1905

Bemberg: Nymphs et sylvains
Landon Ronald, piano Recorded: March 1904

BROWNING MUMMERY tenor 1888-1974
JOHN BROWNLEE baritone 1900-1969
Puccini: Addio, dolce svegliare (Quartet) (La bohème) with Aurora Rettore, soprano
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden / Vincenzo Bellezza Recorded live: 8 June 1926

FRANCES SAVILLE soprano 1862-1935
Massenet: Obéissons, quand leur voix appelle (Gavotte) (Manon) with piano
Recorded: Vienna, 1902-3

ADA CROSSLEY contralto 1871-1929
Mallinson: New Year Song Christopher H. H. Booth, piano
Recorded: Philadelphia, PA, 30 April 1903

FRANCES ALDA soprano 1879-1952
Verdi: Miserere (Il trovatore) with Enrico Caruso, tenor, with orchestra
Recorded: Camden, New Jersey, 27 December 1909

Puccini: In quelle trine morbide (Manon Lescaut)
Orchestra / Rosario Bourdon
Recorded: Liederkranz Hall, New York, 26 June 1928

MARIE NARELLE soprano 1870-1941
Balfe: Killarney
with orchestra
Recorded: New York, 1910

LALLA MIRANDA soprano 1871-1940
Verdi: Follie! Follie! … Sempre libera (La traviata) (sung in French) with orchestra
Recorded: France c.1904

ROSINA BUCKMAN soprano 1881-1848
Puccini: One fine day (Un bel dì vedremo) (Madama Butterfly)
Royal Albert Hall Orchestra / Eugene Goossens
Recorded: London, 4 April 1924

HORACE STEVENS bass-baritone 1876-1950
Elgar: Jesu! by that shuddering dread (The Dream of Gerontius)
London Symphony Orchestra / Sir Edward Elgar
Recorded live: Hereford Cathedral, 6 September 1927

ANDREW BLACK baritone 1859-1920
Sullivan: Time was when love and I (Curate's Song) (The Sorcerer)
with piano
Recorded: London, November 1905 · G&T 3-2327

ALFRED HILL tenor 1869-1960
Hill: Waiata Poi Mirrie Hill, piano
Recorded: 9 July 1926 · Matrix Bb 8717-I · HMV test recording S/S 6-2688 unpublished

WALTER KIRBY tenor 1877-1934
Kneass: Ben Bolt (Trilby's Song)
with piano
Recorded: Sydney, 20 January 1927

PETER DAWSON bass-baritone 1882-1962
Handel: Honour and Arms (Samson) Orchestra / George Byng
Recorded: London, 1 November 1927 · HMV C 1500

James: Six Australian Bush Songs
No. 1 The Land of Who Knows Where
No. 2 Bush Silence
No. 4 Comrades of Mine
No. 5 Bush Night Song
No. 6 The Stockrider's Song Gerald Moore, piano
Recorded: London, 12 October 1927

Trad. Cornish arr. Moss: The Floral Dance
Gerald Moore, piano
Recorded: London, 14 January 1927

MALCOLM McEACHERN bass 1883-1945
Handel: O ruddier than the cherry (Acis and Galatea)
Orchestra / Clarence Raybould
Recorded: London, 21 June 1935

HAMILTON HILL baritone 1868-1910
Hill: The Boys' Brigade
with military band
Recorded: 24 August 1906

VIOLET MOUNT (L'INCOGNITA) soprano 1875-1972
2Bishop: Lo! Here the gentle lark
John Amadio, flute
Orchestra / George W. Byng
Recorded: London, 23 September 1921

GLADYS MONCRIEFF soprano 1892-1976
Fraser-Simson: Love will find a way (The Maid of the Mountains)
Columbia Concert Orchestra / Gilbert Dechelette
Recorded: Sydney, 12 December 1928

ROBERT CHISHOLM baritone 1894-1960
Tate: A Paradise for Two (The Maid of the Mountains)
with orchestra
Recorded: London, June 1926

ELSIE MORISON soprano 1924-2016
JOHN CAMERON baritone 1918-2002
Berlioz: O mon cher fils (L'Enfance du Christ)
St. Anthony Singers · Goldsbrough Orchestra / Colin Davis
Recorded: Battersea Town Hall, London, October 1960

ANGELINA ARENA soprano born 1926
Verdi: Saper vorreste (Un ballo in maschera)
Queensland Symphony Orchestra / Wilfred Lehmann
Recorded: 1974

MARIE COLLIER soprano 1927-1971
Richard Strauss: Ich kann nicht sitzen (Elektra) with Birgit Nilsson, soprano
Wiener Philharmoniker / Georg Solti
Recorded: Sofiensaal, Vienna, 14 June, 30 November 1966, 22 February & 14-15 June 1967

RITA HUNTER soprano 1933-2001
Ponchielli: Suicidio! (La Gioconda)
Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra / Dobbs Franks
Recorded: Government House, Hobart, August 1989

LORNA SYDNEY mezzo-soprano 1910-1974
Mahler: Urlicht (Symphony No. 2 'Resurrection')
Wiener Staatsopernorchester / Felix Prohaska
Recorded: Vienna, 1951

YVONNE MINTON mezzo-soprano born 1938
Mahler: Rheinlegendchen (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)
Chicago Symphony Orchestra / Georg Solti
Recorded: Medinah Temple, Chicago, 1 & 7 April 1970

JOHN CAMERON baritone 1918-2002
German: The Yeomen of England (Merrie England)
New Symphony Orchestra & Chorus / Victor Olof
Recorded: Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London, 9-11 March 1953

RONALD DOWD tenor 1914-1990
Berlioz: Sanctus (Grand Messe des Morts, Op. 5)
Wandsworth School Boys' Choir
London Symphony Chorus & Orchestra / Sir Colin Davis
Recorded: Westminster Cathedral, London, November 1969

KENNETH NEATE tenor 1914-1997
Puccini: Nessun dorma (Turandot)
Orchestre Philharmonique de Paris / Napoleone Annovazzi
Recorded: Salle Wagram, Paris, 1956

RAYMOND NILSSON tenor 1920-1998
JOHN LANIGAN tenor 1921-1996
Britten: People! … No! I will speak! (Peter Grimes)
with James Pease, baritone · Jean Watson, contralto · Claire Watson, soprano
Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Opera House / Benjamin Britten
Recorded: Walthamstow Assembly Hall, December 1958

JOAN SUTHERLAND soprano 1926-2010
Rossini: La fioraia fiorentina Richard Bonynge, piano
Recorded: London, 20 June 1958

Donizetti: Ah! tardai troppo … O luce di quest'anima (Linda di Chamounix)
Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire / Nello Santi
Recorded: La Maison de la Chimie, Paris, 28-30 April 1959

Gounod: Oh Dieu! Que de bijoux … Ah! Je ris (Jewel Song) (Faust)
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House / Francesco Molinari-Pradelli
Recorded: Kingsway Hall, London, 12 July & 15-18 August, 1960

JOAN CARDEN soprano born 1937
Catalani: Ebben? … Ne andrò lontana (La Wally)
Queensland Philharmonic Orchestra / Roderick Brydon
Recorded: Brisbane, 29 January 1996

YVONNE KENNY soprano born 1950
Novello: We'll gather lilacs (Perchance to Dream)
Melbourne Symphony Orchestra / Vladimir Kamirski
Recorded: Melbourne, 1993 · ABC Classics 442 509-2
P 1994 Australian Broadcasting Corporation