The transformation of London concert life 1880-1914

"In the 35 years before the First World War, the concert industry in Europe and America underwent profound change, from a culture of near dearth to one of modern profusion. The patterns that emerged were to affect composers, performers, concert-goers and the packaging of musical events, within a truly international context, for most of the twentieth century. London was at the heart of this change, whose first evidence was a meteoric rise in the public demand for music entertainment but whose ultimate outcome, oversupply, led to a glut in concert provision. What happened in between - the drive to create orchestras, shape programmes, finance seasons, attract and train audiences - is the subject of the project. The research is particularly focussed on the decade around 1900, during which period the Queen's Hall and the Bechstein (later Wigmore) Hall were established as London's premier venues, enabling a year-round schedule of high-class orchestral and chamber concerts (including the summer Proms) for the first time" (Professor Simon McVeigh
Dr Leanne Langley, Eva Mantzourani with the late Cyril Ehrlich).(please see project web site for more details)

Principal investigator
Professor Simon McVeigh
Principal project staff
Professor Simon William McVeigh
Start date
Friday, October 1, 1999
Completion date
Sunday, September 1, 2002

*Cyril Ehrlich*

'The First Hundred Years', in Wigmore Hall 1901-2001: a Celebration, ed. Julia MacRae (London, 2001), pp. 31-65

Simon McVeigh and Cyril Ehrlich

'The Modernisation of London's Concert Life around 1900', in The Business of Music, ed. Michael Talbot (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press), pp. 96-120

*Simon McVeigh*

'Music and the Consumer Society: London's West End Concerts during the 1890s', International Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music, Royal Holloway, 29 June to 2 July2000

'"An Audience for High-class Music": The Musician as Entrepreneur in Late Nineteenth-Century London', international conference The Musician as Entrepreneur and Opportunist, Los Angeles, 1-2 June 2001

'Violinists in London's Concert Life around 1900', Third Biennial Conference on Music in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Royal College of Music, 16-19 July 2001
'London's First Permanent Orchestras: the Changing Structure of Orchestral Concerts around 1900', Fourth Biennial Conference on Music in Nineteenth-Century Britain, University of Leeds, 24-27 July 2003'Women Violinists in London around 1900', University of Southampton, 21 February 2004

'Ethel Barns and Joseph Holbrooke: Radical Concert Programming in Edwardian London', Royal Academy of Music, 15 October 2004

*Leanne Langley*

'The Queen's Hall, Langham Place: Substance and Symbol in Late Nineteenth-Century London', Third Biennial Conference on Music in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Royal College of Music, 16-19 July 2001

'Enterprise and Entertainment: The Rising Star of Orchestral Music in Late Victorian London', British Association for Victorian Studies Annual Conference 'Victorian Performances', University of Lancaster, 6-8 September 2001

'Grove in Perspective: The First Dictionary of Music and Musicians', 67th Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society, Atlanta, Georgia, 15-18 November 2001 (and related papers given in 2000 at the Royal College of Music and at the International Musicological Society meeting, Budapest); published as 'Roots of a Tradition: TheFirst Dictionary of Music and Musicians', in George Grove, Music and Victorian Culture, ed. Michael Musgrave (London: Palgrave, 2003), pp.168-215

'The Transformation of London Concert Life, 1880-1914', XVIIth Congress of the International Musicological Society, Leuven, Belgium, 1-7 August 2002

'Agency and Change: Berlioz in Britain, 1879-1920', 'Interpreting Berlioz' Conference, Victoria & Albert Museum and Royal College of Music, 15-17 November 2002 (and related papers given at the Fourth Biennial Conference on Music in Nineteenth-Century Britain, University of Leeds, 24-27 July 2003, and the 69th Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society, Houston, Texas, 13-16 November 2003); under revision for publication

'Henry Wood on Screen: History and Fiction in Calling the Tune (Ealing, 1936)', Royal Academy of Music, 28 February 2003

'Patterns and Networks: Concert Life in London, Manchester, Glasgow and Birmingham, 1880-1914', University of Birmingham Study Day 'English Music, Concert Life and the Theatre, 1830-1960', Stratford-upon-Avon, 9-10 May 2003

'The Queen's Hall Promenade Concerts, 1895-1920: Continuities and Discontinuities',Institute of Historical Research, University of London, 19 May 2003; under revision for publication, 2007

Entries on English music critics and criticism for The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd edn (Macmillan, 2001); on Mary Wurm and Mathilde, Alice and Adela Verne for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (OUP, 2004); and on George Grove, Edward Holmes and John Sainsbury for Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (Bärenreiter, in press)