1985 - Chicago, London and Warwick
Orchestra Hall in Chicago provides the backdrop for Rudolph Ganz.
In June 1985 we made friends with the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, when we helped them, unofficially, to revive
Rudolph Ganz at Orchestra Hall in Chicago, as soloist in the Liszt Eb Piano Concerto. In the photograph above, Orcenith
Smith is conducting, and Denis Hall is supervising the slightly reluctant Mr Ganz, who died thirteen years earlier, in 1972, having been the Director of the Chicago
Conservatoire for many years, as well as having recorded a wide selection of Duo-Art rolls.
En Route to the Pianola Marathon - September 1985, RFH.
(Photo: Tim Bromage)
In September, we staged a 72-hour Pianola Marathon at the Royal Festival Hall in London, thanks notably to Anthony Phillips,
the most enterprising Director the Hall has ever had, and a member of the Friends of the Pianola Institute. We played non-stop, by day
and by night, even inside the LCC's giant pink 95th birthday cake seen above, with a number of set concerts interspersed with informal playing.
The Power of Music - September 1985, RFH.
Playing through the evening hours was an unpredictable experience, with, inevitably, some passers-by rather dismissive of the pianola. But
one of the most moving photographs from all our twenty years was of this homeless man. The pianolist and the music are unidentified, but the
expression on the face of the listener needs no description.
The CYSO in rehearsal with two pianolas - Warwick University, December 1985
In December, the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra travelled to Great Britain for its first-ever overseas tour, with concerts in Bath, Warwick
and London, and a reception at the London home of Sir Georg Solti, then Music Director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The Warwick University
concert provided a dry run for our subsequent programme at the Queen Elizabeth Hall.
The Pianola Institute Inaugural Concert - December 1985, QEH.
The Pianola Institute's Inaugural Concert was held at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, on 4 December 1985, presented by Richard Baker, the
well-known BBC television personality. Percy Grainger played the Grieg Piano
Concerto, Denis Hall and Rex Lawson tiptoed through Saint-Saëns' Carnival of Animals, and an orchestra of 111 young musicians brought the
house down in John Philip Sousa's Stars and Stripes.