This site is designed so that its contents are accessible to every type of browser. You browser, however, may not support basic Web standards, preventing the display of our site's design details. You are encouraged to upgrade to a more standards compliant browser.

Search: Advanced Search
HomeSearchGetRecordOriana Madrigal Society (1905-37)

Collection Description

Collection Title
Oriana Madrigal Society (1905-37)
Unique Identifier
A collection of programmes and wordbooks for performances given at various London venues by the Oriana Madrigal Society, conducted by Mr Charles Kennedy, between 1905 and 1937, arranged chronologically over 2 volumes (1905–14 and 1915–37).

Also, the programme and wordbook for the 22nd Concert, given at the Royal Victoria Hall on 16 April 1918 with Miss Harriet Cohen and Arnold Bax (pianos), held as a third volume and a plastic wallet containing photocopies of this material. The material in volume 3 begins with a newspaper cutting entitled ‘English Music at the Old Vic’, which provides a review of an unspecified concert given by the Society.

The performances documented in volume one were two or three-part concerts of predominantly sixteenth and seventeenth-century English choral repertory, with occasional vocal and instrumental solos. Those covered in volume two were wider ranging, including repertory from a broader historical and geographical spectrum. In particular, much contemporary English repertory is introduced, including a significant number of choral arrangements of folk songs. There is also considerably more instrumental music permitted.

All programmes include a list of the Honorary Members of the Society and provide a contextual introduction, intended for those considering becoming members. Additional information regarding the performers is provided as listed below, where the first set of performer names listed reflects the solo performers and the second set notes those involved in performing solo parts within an ensemble piece.

The sequential position of the performances is given in parenthesis below.

Volume 1: 1905–14 (8 concerts)
All programmes in this volume include lists of the Committee members of the Society and of the choral singers. From 17 December 1912, Edward Elgar is listed as President.

A number of the workbooks include ‘Analytical Notes’. Although those for 18 June 1912 include a brief musical example, these are largely historical/descriptive essays.

The volume also contains a report of the season 1906–07.

4 July 1905, Portman Rooms (1): Cordelia Grylls (soprano) and Bantock Pierpoint (baritone), with Mr Aldebert Allen (flute), Frank Thistleton (violin), Ivor James (cello) and Grace Sunderland (piano) (with notes by ‘C.K.S’ [Charles Kennedy Scott]). The programme for this concert includes a specially prepared article by G.E.P. Arkwright entitled ‘A Note of Some Differences Between Modern and Modal Music’.
12 June 1906, Aeolian Hall (3): Miss Emmie Tatham (soprano) and Charles Kennedy Scott (organ), with Misses Bansard, Bone, Cunningham, Porter and Emmie Tatham, Mrs Coolen and Messrs Foley Banks, Ernest Elliott, Vincert Hards and Tatham (with notes by Thomas Beecham).
11 June 1907, Portman Rooms (5): Cordelia Grylls, Mr Vincent Hards and Mr Bantock Pierpoint (vocal), with Messrs Foley Banks, F. Clay, F. Hayes and Leonard Rogers (with notes by Charles Kennedy Scott). The programme includes a reproduction of an essay entitled ‘Some reasons briefly set downe by William Byrd to perswade everyone to learne to sing’, an essay by Charles Kennedy Scott entitled ‘The Madrigal in England’, and a statement regarding Euterpe, the publication of the Oriana Madrigal Society.
16 March 1908, Portman Rooms (6): Miss Grainger Kerr (vocal) (advertisement with programme).
18 June 1912, Cathedral Hall, Westminster (11): Miss Gordon Pillans (soprano), Mr A.H. Dancey (baritone) and Mrs Norman O’Neill (piano), with Misses Marie Craven, Jessie Epps, Elise Grosholz, May Hayden, Moya Herdman, Kathleen Peck, Winifred Williamson and Maude Willby, Mrs Sydenham Smith and Messrs Bernard Gawthrop, Clifford Heath, P. McLean, Leonard Rogers, Alonzo Thorogood, W. Webber, Albert Whitehead and H. Williams (vocal) (with notes by Charles Kennedy Scott). This document includes a statement regarding Euterpe (which includes a summary of the contents of the thirteen volumes published to date).
17 December 1912, Cathedral Hall, Westminster: A Concert of Old Carols and Christmas Music, including Part VI of J.S. Bach, Christmas Oratorio, conducted by Rutland Boughton. Also, Misses W. Williams and Maude Willby and Messrs A.M. Gee, J.K. McLean, Alonzo Thorogood and Hugh Williams (vocal) with Mr J.W. Whittaker and Mr F. Murphy (oboe).
10 March 1914, Queen’s Hall (13): Mr Thorpe Bates (baritone), including the first performances of G. Holst, Hymn to Dionysus and W.H. Whittaker, North Country Folk Tune (arranged for unaccompanied voices), both conducted by their composers. This document includes an advertisement, with programme, for the Society’s next concert (26 May, Duke’s Hall, Marylebone) and for various other London concerts of a similar nature.
15 December 1914, Cathedral Hall, Westminster: Concert of Christmas Music, including the first performance of Norman O’Neill, Noel (advertisement with programme).

Volume 2: 1915–37 (13 concerts)
Unless otherwise stated below, all concerts took place at the Aeolian Hall, London.

Programmes for 15 June 1915, 11 April 1916, 26 June 1923 and16 March and 14 December 1937 include lists of the Committee members and of the choral ensemble. For the first two of these concerts, Edward Elgar is listed as President. For the remaining three, Ralph Vaughan Williams is cited as Vice-President, under the patronage of Her Majesty the Queen.

15 June 1915 (17): Philharmonic String Quartet (individual members not listed) with Miss Winifred Williamson (alto), Mr Gervase Elwes (tenor) and Herbert Langley (baritone), including songs by Roger Quilter, accompanied by the composer (with an additional handbill).
11 April 1916 (18): a two-part concert of Early Music and Mainly Modern Music, given by the Chaplin Trio and Misses Ada Barnett, F. Blaikley, J. Clegg, Jessie Epps, Maude Willby, Winifred Williamson and F. Wooster, Mrs G. Robinson and S. Smith, and Messrs H. Marks, J.K. McLean and Leonard Rogers (vocal), with Miss Gwendolen Mason (harp) and Miss Nellie Chaplin (harpsichord).
19 December 1916 (19): Chaplin String Quartet (Kate Chaplin, Monique Poole, Maud Foster Evans, Mabel Chaplin), with Miss Beatrice Hughes-Pope (vocal), including the first performance of Old English Carols, set to music by Holst and featuring Mr J. McDonagh (oboe) and Miss Mabel Chaplin (cello).
3 July 1917 (21): including John Ireland, Violin Sonata No. 2 in A minor, given by Albert Sammons and William Murdoch. Inserted into the programme is a press cutting from The Daily Telegraph of 4 July 1917.
18 December 1917: Christmas concert with Misses Jessie Epps, Beatrice Hughes-Pope and M. Ward-Smith and Mr Geoffrey Shaw (vocal), Adelina Leon (violin) and Norman O’Neill (piano), including an extract from J.S. Bach, Christmas Oratorio, accompanied by Edward S. Mitchell.
16 April 1918, Royal Victoria Hall (22): Miss Harriet Cohen (piano). This is a photocopy of the programme contained in volume 3 of this shelf mark and which is also held in reproduction in volume 4.
21 December 1918: Christmas concert with Messrs Leonard Rogers and Arthur A. Pearson and Miss Maude Willby (vocal), Miss Dorothea Walenn (violin) and Dr W.H. Harris (organ).
10 and 12 April [1919]: Concert Illustrating Music and Dance in Shakespeare’s Time, with Misses Jessie Epps, Winifred Williamson and Maude Willby, Mrs L.F. Stone, and Messrs E.C. Chirgwin, Mr W.S. Parsons, Arthur A. Pearson, Leonard Rogers, and Mr McD[onald] Winder (vocal), with the Chaplin Trio (Nellie, Kate and Mabel Chaplin), assisted by Margaret Scripps (violin), Alice Grassie (viola) and Leila Bull (oboe). This was a three-part concert – Music mostly of Early English Style; Instrumental and Dancing; and Music mostly of late Elizabethan style – including the first performances of Balfour Gardiner, Modern Settings of Two Early English Songs.
10 July 1919 (25): A concert illustrating British Folk-Song and Dance, given by Miss Elsie Avril (violin), with Miss Patuffa Kennedy-Fraser, Miss E. Hird Morgan, Miss Winifred Williamson, Mr W.E. Stone, Mr Woodward Aston and Mr Norman F. Stone (vocal), including Morris and Country Dances by members of the English Folk Dance Society.
26 June 1923: Summer Concert/A Byrd and Weelkes Commemoration Concert, given by Miss Sara Silvers, Mr Eustace Belham, Mr Leonard Rogers and Mr Norman Stone with Misses Constance Izard, Dorothy Churton, Lilian Mukle, Effie Creamer, Dorothy Jones and Marjorie Edes (strings) and Harold Craxton (keyboard) (with some very minor handwritten annotations).
16 March 1937: Spring Concert with Dorothy Moulton, Betty Hutchings and Eric Whittemore (vocal), Joseph Slater (flute), Dorothy Callender (harpsichord), Jem Marchant (cello) and string players from Trinity College of Music (with minor handwritten annotations).
8 June 1937: Summer Concert with Cecil Cope (vocal).
14 December 1937: Christmas Concert with Gladys Currie, Edith Mills, Kathleen Netherway and Audrey Scate (vocal).
Date range of collection
1905 - 1937
Accumulation Dates
Suggested Audience
Not Specific

Location Details

British Library, Music Collections
96 Euston Road London NW1 2DB
Open Map
020 7412 7772
020 7412 7751
Visiting Information
Reprographic services
See for further details
Collections Overview
For details of other collections held at the same location: See the location record

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