Mikhail Glinka was the father of the 19th-century Russian nationalist school
and exerted a profound and freely ackowledged influence upon Tchaikovsky.
"Russlan & Ludmila" was his second opera and shows Glinka's variation treatment
of Russian folk melodies. He crystalizes the tunes by changing the backgrounds,
one of his musical techniques used by future Russian composers.
Paul Clark has been important to the British recorder movement for many years and
was the conductor of the Heart of England Recorder Orchestra. "Variations on
Scarborough Fair" was written one night in 1977 for a summer school session the
Paul Clark also arranged "Gopak," a lively folk dance from Mussorgsky's unfinished
opera "Sorochinsky Fair," composed between 1876 and 1881.
One of the strangest and most fascinating musical personalities of the 20th century
was Phillip Heseltine (1894-1930). Around 1921, after a trip to Ireland, where he
involved himself with the occult, he began composing under the name "Peter Warlock."
Initially the name was only a professional convenience. Gradually a new personality
began to emerge with the new name. Warlock was the opposite of Heseltine, a reckless
carouser, cynical and brash. The two personalities continued to co-exist until Warlock
had taken over. At age 36, during a period of depression, he took his own life.
Warlock's "Capriol Suite" was written in 1926 and has become his most popular work. It
is supposedly based on tunes from Thoinot Arbeau's "Orchesographie," a 16th-century
treatise of popular dance forms.
In the 1920's ensembles of like-instruments became a popular style in American music.
Harmonica bands, mandolin bands, ocarina orchestras and brass bands became popular
much as recorder groups had in the Renaissance. The Six Brown Brothers Saxophone Sextet
became the first important saxophone ensemble in popular American music from 1908
to 1933. Russian Rag is one of their favorite compositions. We present this
as an example of early 20th-century music.