Dacca Tiis is the centenary year of Anton Dvorak (1841-1904), who with Frederick Smetana (1814-1884) gave musical expression to the racial culture of Bohemia. Dvorak was a peasant who achieved his musical training with great hardship but obtained at last a cosmopolitan experience so that he was equally at home in the Negro music of America. Hence his " Nigger " quartet and the New World Symphony. Decca announces a programme of hitherto unrecorded works by the great Czech composer and gives us this month the Sextet in A major, Op. 48, played by the Menges Sextet. This is a delightful work, the slow movement being called a Dumka or Elegy, followed by Furiant (Presto) and a finale of theme and variations.
Other Dacca recordings of Dvorak in the past have been the Serenade iLs E for strings, the " Dumky " Trio, Op. 90, the Symphonic Variations and the Trio in F minor, Op. 63.
All these recordings may be confidently recommended to the taste of any musiclover. Nor perhaps is it too laic to mention the Decca recording of Beethoven's Sonata in 43 major for Violin and Pianoforte Op. 10 No. 3, that was issued in May (K. 959-40).
His Master's Voice A STRING Quartet forms the chief inter"est of the June iecords: this is Beethoven's Quartet in G major, Op. 18, No. 2, played by the Budapest String Quartet. Opus 18 that consisted entirely of such chamber music reflects that period of Beethoven's art when youth had its say and its vivacious moods are weuded to perfect craftsmanship. The recording is clear and delicate and the work embraces three records (six sides).
The Magic Fire Music from the third Act of the Valkyrie is played by the Philadelphia Orchestra under Stokowski and is full of those rich and glorious sounds that Wagner knew how to elicit when he was in descriptive mood.
Chopin's Barcarolle in F sharp, played by Moisciwitch, is well worth adding to any collection of Chopin recordings. The evolution of pianoforte recording was a slow and difficult process but the results obtained today are more than satiefactory. A soft or medium needle should be used for such music.
C. G. M.