From the Archive: February 1930

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In his regular ‘Continental Happenings’ column, the acerbic George Cecil rounds up some of the more unusual string-related news and performances around Europe

If recitals are few, the cinemas provide much employment for those who perform on stringed instruments. Managers of the Grands Boulevards  establishments pride themselves on their musical programmes. “Figaro” recently was given at this establishment, the foundations of the extremely interesting and well-produced film being taken from the plots of “Il Barbiere” and “Le Nozze di Figaro,” while airs from both operas are skilfully woven into the orchestral accompaniment. Had these been accorded thetempi intended by Rossini and Mozart, respectively, they would have afforded far greater satisfaction. “Dove sono,” for example, is marked “andante”; the ignorant conductor evidently considered “largo di molto” appropriate. But the French never understand any music outside their own; nor are they ever likely to do so…

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