A London Overture abroad

Continuing the theme of performances of Ireland’s music outside Britain, in the early 1940s A London Overture was widely travelled, making it north to Riga and  as far south as Johannesburg. Worthy of note is that Ernst Praetorius conducted the piece at the Ankara Conservatoire. German-born Praetorius (18801946) was an almost exact contemporary of Ireland. From 1922 to 1924 he was music director at the Volksoper in Berlin, later of the German National Theatre in Weimar. The combination of his marriage to a Jewish woman and commitment to the contemporary music hated by the Nazi Party forced him out of paid employment. After seeking exile in Turkey, along with Hindemith he helped found the new conservatory in Ankara in 1936, where Ireland’s music was subsequently heard.

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