I had a meeting with Michael Hall at his house in Exeter on Monday, 26th October. It was particularly worthwhile. Firstly because my recorder functioned perfectly. Secondly because of the wealth of useful information that Hall provided. He also gave me an excerpt from the book he is working on at the moment, which details Birtwistle’s theatre music and its genesis at Cranborne Chase. Future posts will deal with this, though for the details you will have to wait for the book to be published.
Hall also gave me the programme for the concerts that took place in 1964, which I very much needed. I had the 1965 booklet from the ACE archives, which Hall hadn’t seen, and the 1964 information is less complete, taking the form of a flyer rather than the concert programme.
There is a wealth of information from this meeting that will take significant time to digest. Perhaps most immediately striking was Hall’s suggestion that the WCSSs were very much concerned with the tradition of music making, and thus a long way from the ideology of Darmstadt or Dartington. Where these events presented information in the form of ‘lectures’ by ‘experts’, the WCSSs were conceived as fora for discussion and the music that was played reflected these aims.
A new category for this post: interviews, under the parent category of methodology.