Track 6: Les Nuits d'ete / Le Spectre de la rose / Maggie Teyte, soprano / London Philharmonic Orchestra / Leslie Heward / 1940
Maggie Teyte (1881-1976). Born in Great Britain, she changed her name from Tate to Teyte when she went to Paris to give a recital at which she was accompanied by the composer Claude Debussy at the piano. Debussy selected her to succeed Mary Garden as Melisande in his Pelleas et Melisande at the Opera-Comique in 1908. She repeated this role in London under the direction of Sir Thomas Beecham in 1910. Subsequently her career and personal life had their ups and downs, but she continued to sing professionally in then Uited Kingdom and United States until 1956. Her command of style iwas recognised as being extraordinary.
The English conductor Leslie Heward (1897-1943) was born in Yorkshire, the son of a railway porter and organist. He showed remarkable musical ability from an early age, winning a scholarship to the Royal College of Music in 1917, where he studied conducting with Boult and composition with Vaughan Williams. He led the Cape Town Orchestra from 1924 to 1927, and in 1930 was appointed chief conductor of the City of Birmingham Orchestra. From 1938 onwards he recorded prolifically for EMI. His career was cut short by tuberculosis. Walter Legge described him as 'the most satisfying [British] conductor...since Beecham'.