Authors Darren Henley and Vincent McKernan, in the first ever hardback history of the RLPO, have discovered that the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra can trace its continuous history of regular concert-giving, with a formally contracted group of regular players, as far back as 1853. This makes the RLPO the oldest orchestra in the UK still in existence. Manchester’s Hallé Orchestra is normally recognised as the oldest symphony orchestra in the country, but this new research overturns this belief. The Hallé was formed in 1858, a full five years after the Liverpool Philharmonic’s committee papers show that it first engaged its professional band.
'The Original Liverpool Sound: The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Story' charts the history of the Phil from its foundation by a group of Liverpool music lovers in 1840 through to the present day, where it remains very much at the heart of Liverpool's cultural life. Written by Darren Henley, Managing Director of Classic FM, and the Phil's former archivist, Vincent McKernan, the book tells the story of the Liverpool Phil and the stories and secrets of the people and events that have been associated with the organisation throughout its illustrious history including the distinguished line of principal conductors including Max Bruch, Sir Charles Hallé, Sir Henry Wood, Sir Malcolm Sargent, Sir Charles Groves and Libor Pešek KBE and today, the talismanic Vasily Petrenko; the opening of the first Philharmonic Hall in 1849 (which was completely gutted by fire in 1933) and the building of the existing Hall on the same site and opened in 1939; and the premieres of music by many distinguished composers including Rachmaninov, Tippett, Britten, Walton, Prokofiev and Shostakovich, Sir John Tavener, Karl Jenkins and Michael Nyman. Thoroughly researched using the Phil's complete archive, and featuring seldom seen historical illustrations and specially commissioned full colour photographs, 'The Original Liverpool Sound' will be compulsory reading for aficionados of classical music and anyone interested in the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.
Darren Henley is the author of eighteen books about classical music and musicians. He began working as a newsreader at Classic FM in 1992, becoming Managing Editor in 2000, Station Manager in 2004 and Managing Director in 2006. He has worked closely with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic since it became Classic FM’s Orchestra in Northwest England in 2001, a partnership which has seen The Phil’s live concert performances regularly reaching a wider UK audience than any other orchestra.
Vincent McKernan studied History at the University of Liverpool and went on to take a Masters degree in Archive Administration. He worked for Greater Manchester Record Office for 19 years, rising through the ranks to become County Archivist. He joined the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic as Archivist in 2006 and was responsible for managing a two year project, which catalogued the organisation’s archive to international standards for the first time.
Foreword by Vasily Petrenko
1. The Musical City
2. The Early Days
3. Mixed Reviews
4. The Big Names Come to Town
5. New Hope
6. By Royal Command
7. The Best Czech Orchestra This Side of Prague
8. The European Capital of Culture
RLPO Premiere Performances
Ensemble 10/10 Premiere Performances
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
245 x 245 mm
April 1, 2009