Friday, October 21, 2011
Happy Birthday, Franz Liszt!
Liszt: Liebestraum No. 3 in A-Flat
Chopin: Nocturne in E-Flat, Op. 9, No. 2
J. H. Squire Celeste Octet
Recorded January 29, 1932
Columbia DX 362, one 78-rpm record
Link (FLAC files, 22.43 MB)
Link (MP3 files, 9.24 MB)
Perhaps J. H. Squire (1880-1956) didn't intend these salon orchestra arrangements, played by an ensemble consisting of strings, piano, harmonium and, yes, celesta, to be fun, but that's how they come across nearly a century later. Notice how the two cadenzas in the "Liebestraum" are played by the pianist in the group, as if in acknowledgement of their essential un-transcribability!
A number of Edison Blue Amberol cylinders played by the Moss-Squire Celeste Orchestra, which I presume was a precursor to the Squire Celeste Octet, can be heard online at the USCB's Cylinder Digitization Project. These are fun, too.