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Defining the British Flute School : a study of British flute performance practice 1890-1940 Raposo, Jessica Ann

Abstract

The British Flute School went through dramatic change in the twentieth century, as its leading players adopted elements of the French style of playing. These changes caused tensions that have led to a subjective oral history: a history which depicts two camps of flautists vying for the superior style, with one winner in the end. This document aims to provide a more comprehensive and more accurate history of the British Flute School from 1890 to 1940, and, through this investigation, explore what it means to define a style of playing in terms of both nationality and as a unified school. It will include not only an exploration of the interactions between the French and British flute schools, but also an in-depth examination of the influences of flautists of other nationalities, their career activities, performed repertoire, critical commentary in the press (primarily from The Musical Times and the London Times), British flute pedagogy, the recording industry, and aspects of the overarching musical culture in Great Britain. A survey of the active flautists of the time includes: John Amadio, Jean Firmin Brossa, Albert Cunningham, Edward De Jong, Louis Fleury, John Francis, Albert Fransella, Philippe Gaubert, Geoffrey Gilbert, Frederic Griffith, René Le Roy, Joseph Lingard, Gareth Morris, Marcel Moyse, Robert Murchie, Vincent Needham, Edith Penville, E. Stanley Redfern, Joseph Slater, and Lupton Whitelock. The document concludes with a proposal for a redefinition of the British Flute School that, like the culture from which it comes, values rather than disparages the diversity of its history.

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