These CDs have been issued in tribute to the player's husband and to raise funds for thier English Bach Festival Trust, a thoroughly worthy cause. .
Home | Reviews | Articles | Festivals | Competitions | Other | Contact Us

Lina Lalandi plays Bach (JS & CPE), Couperin, Scarlatti & Albeniz

English Bach Festival EBF 001 & 002

These historic recordings are delightful mementos of the '60s, when Lina Lalandi, founder of the English Bach Society, was active on the concert platform.

Whatever today's purists may (and will) say, especially about the Hugh Gough and Thomas Goff instruments reckoned anachronistic by today's tastes, no one will criticise the late Stanley Sadie for endorsing the persuasion of Lina's friends to make these spirited and communicative performances available to collectors of early keyboard instrument recordings.

The recordings were made privately, in Lina Landi's own home and without editing "for my personal study and interest, often with one of my cats in my lap"!

The harpsichord by Hugh Gough (1954) had a separate bridge for its 16ft stop, with a sonority "reminiscent of the mighty 18th C harpsichords by Hass of Hamburg", and it reminded me of the tone we used to enjoy from Wanda Landowska.

The beautiful clavichord played and pictured is too a historic instrument of 1939 by the then famous Thomas Goff, It was regularly to be heard in recital and broadcasts, admired by such virtuosi clavichordists as Thurston Dart and George Malcolm. This particular instrument, greatly cherished by Lina Lalandi and other distinguished performers, "inexplicably disappeared" mysteriously without trace, around the time that its famous maker suicided. Goff instruments are sweet-toned, and you will hear their plangent expressive bebung, a vibrato which it shares with the violin, but is rather disapproved of nowadays. My own clavichord was made for me by Alec Hodsdon in 1951, a student investment never regretted; his then affordable instruments are likewise out of favour with specialists...

There are nostalgic links. I frequented the English Bach Society in its early flourishing days, and valued especially Lina Lalandi's bringing her countryman Skalkottas to our notice. The extensive notes are by Stanley Sadie, Lina Landi and her husband Walter Emery, and by Felix Aprahamian (who persuaded me to record privately my son's singing before his treble voice broke - no time to wait upon the vagaries of record companies!).

Released in memory of Walter Emery and to raise funds for the English Bach Society Trust, I thoroughly enjoyed these faithfully remastered tapes of music which all pianists, harpsichordists and clavichordists will have tackled, including the Twelve Little Preludes on both intruments; given another decade or two they will become collectors items.



© Peter Grahame Woolf