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HomeSearchGetRecordBritish Orchestral Society (1872-75)

Collection Description

Collection Title
British Orchestral Society (1872-75)
Unique Identifier
An incomplete collection of eleven programmes with words from the first three seasons of the British Orchestral Society concerts, given at St. James’s Hall, London between 1872 and 1875.

These were performances of predominantly nineteenth-century orchestral, concerto and vocal repertory. There is a notable presence from British composers and the prospectus for each season lists pieces commissioned from native musicians for first performance at these concerts.

All performances were conducted by George Mount and all programmes contain historical and analytical notes (with musical examples) by G.A. Macfarren.

Although the set is incomplete – containing eleven of a possible eighteen programmes – all programmes include a summary of arrangements for the complete season to which they relate. This provides notice of all six concert dates, the names of the solo artists engaged, a full list of the orchestral ensemble and information regarding subscription. Those dates given in square brackets below are those for which no individual programmes are held.

Season no.1: 1872–73 (3 programmes)
5 December [and 19 December] 1872, [9 January and] 23 January and [6 February and] 20 February 1873.

Vocal: Madame Lemmens-Sherrington, Madame Florence Lancia, Miss Blanche Cole and Miss Edith Wynne; Madame Patey and Miss Julia Elton; Mr W.H. Cummings, Mr E. Lloyd and Mr Vernon Rigby; Mr Lewis Thomas, Mr Patey and Mr Santley.

Instrumental: Madame Arabella Goddard, Mr J.F. Barnett, and Mr W.G. Cusins (piano), Mr Carrodus (violin), Mr Lazarus (clarinet) and Mr Edward Howell (cello).

New works: G.A. Macfarren, Overture to the M.S. Oratorio, St John the Baptist; John Francis Barnett, New Overture; and an orchestral work by Arthur S. Sullivan.

The programme for 20 February 1873 includes a ‘Summary of the First Season’.

Second Season: 1874–75 (5 programmes)
22 January, 5 and 26 February, [12 March] and 26 March and 8 April 1874.

Vocal: Madame Lemmens-Sherrington, Miss Rose Hersee and Miss Edith Wynne; Miss Julia Elton, Miss Augusta Roche and Madame Patey; Mr Sims Reeves, Mr E. Lloyd and Mr Santley.

Instrumental: Madame Kate Roberts, Miss Linda Scates, Mr Franklin Taylor, Mr Walter Bache and Mr Walter Macfarren (piano), Mr Carrodus (violin), Mr C.W. Doyle (viola) and Mr Edward Howell (cello).

New works: Sir Julius Benedict, Scherzo from Symphony No. 2; J. Hamilton Clarke, Saltarello (first concert); Alfred Holmes, Overture (third concert); George Alexander Macfarren (fifth concert), New Symphony in G minor; Arthur S. Sullivan, Notturno; and a new work from Sir William Sterndale Bennett.

The programme for the third concert includes a handwritten annotation listing the orchestration for the new work by A. Holmes.

Third Season: 1874–75 (3 programmes)
[10 and 31 March, 7 April] and 21 April and 5 and 19 May 1875.

Vocal: Madame Lemmens-Sherrington, Miss Blanche Cole, Miss Rose Hersee, Miss Jessie Jones, Miss Edith Wynne, Miss Julia Elton, Miss Augusta Roche and Madame Patey; Mr E. Lloyd, Mr H. Guy, Mr Sims Reeve, Mr Santley and Mr Lewis Thomas.

Instrumental: Miss Emma Barnett, Miss Florence May, Mr Arthur Wilford and Mr Walter Bache (piano), Mr Carrodus and Mr Henry Holmes (violin) and Mr Edward Howell (cello).

New works: Alfred Holmes, Symphony in C minor ‘Robin Hood’; Henry Gadsby, Andante and Scherzo (21 April); Mrs Julian Marshall, Notturno for Orchestra (5 May); A. Randegger, Scena ‘Saffo’. Also, new works by Hatton (5 May) and Thomas Wingham (overture, 19 May).
Date range of collection
1872 - 1875
Accumulation Dates
Suggested Audience
Not Specific
Associated Places

Location Details

British Library, Music Collections
96 Euston Road London NW1 2DB
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020 7412 7772
020 7412 7751
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Additional Collection Information

Accrual Status
Related Publications
Management Information (Type)
Collection Owner(s)
Collection Creator(s)
Collection Collector(s)
Collection Custodians(s)
Associated Collection(s)
Cardif University (Prifysgol Caerdydd)Royal College of Music LondonMuseums, Libraries and Archives Council