Sir Dan Godfrey - A Sesquicentennial Salute

The name of Sir Dan Godfrey may be new to you. It certainly was to Pristine when Mark Obert-Thorn spotted and relayed to us the news that this redoubtable conductor and champion of classical music in the modest south coast English seaside resort of Bournemouth would have been celebrating his 150th birthday on Wednesday, 20 June.

Starting quite literally from nothing in the late Victorian era, Godfrey built an orchestra which, now as the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, lives on to this day. The  orchestra's conductor and founder, he ran the ensemble for more than forty years, conducting thousands of concerts and promoting innumerable new works and composers.

Godfrey also had a briefly prolific recording career, including the highlight of this release, Mozart's Jupiter Symphony, recorded for Columbia in 1927 with what was almost certainly the London Symphony Orchestra, receiving here its first post-78rpm release, together with a selection of overtures, marches and short works by a wide variety of composers. A fascinating chapter of musical history.