With its slow-cooked articles and book reviews designed to nourish souls famished by the fast food of musical journalese and the indigestible gristle of the ‘research paper’, The Musical Times – scholarly yet accessible – really needs no introduction. Officially launched by its venerable longtime publishers, Novello, in 1844 (exactly ten years after Robert Schumann co-founded the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik), it even appeared regularly (unlike its German sister) during World War 2, making it the world’s oldest continuously published periodical devoted to western classical music.
During its (sometimes volatile) 170-year-old history, involving several changes of publisher, the MT has provided an essential window on to the worlds of contemporary composition, historical musicology, performance practice, and other enduring aspects of the artform. For much of its life it offered comprehensive coverage of the new and the old on a monthly basis, before settling into its current quarterly format (March, June, September, December) in the late 1990s.
Our regular contributors include well-established authors and performers such as Arnold Whittall (on contemporary music and matters Wagnerian), Peter WIlliams (on the Baroque, performance practice and things that niggle him), and Peter Phillips (on Renaissance polyphony and whatever else takes his fancy), as well as scholars at the start of their careers and others, more advanced in years, with bees in their bonnets.
Peter Phillips on Palestrina’s protean progress; Lorna Clark on Charles Burney and Oxford; Beverly Jerold on a 1760 ‘dream’ for better performance standards; Eric Altschuler & Edward Latham on Brahms’s WoO34; Arnold Whittall reviews Roger Scruton’s final Wagner book, a new volume on Arnold Schoenberg and Egon Wellesz, and a survey of the music of Peter Maxwell Davies.