The art of appreciation : music and middlebrow culture in modern Britain /

Publication Type:



University of California Press,, Oakland, California, United States, p.1 online resource (2021)

Call Number:




(OCoLC)fst01030444, (OCoLC)fst01030494, 20th century., bisacsh, fast, Great Britain, History, Music, MUSIC / History & Criticism, Music appreciation, Music appreciation., Social aspects, Social aspects.


Includes bibliographical references and index.The art of appreciation -- "Audiences of the future" : the Robert Mayer Concerts for Children (1924-1939) -- Victorians on radio : Music and the Ordinary Listener (1926-1939) -- Music education on film : Instruments of the Orchestra (1946) -- Outside the ivory tower : extra-mural music at the University of Birmingham (1948-1964) -- The Avant-garde goes to school : O Magnum Mysterium (1960) -- Epilogue : the middlebrow in an age of cultural pluralism."From the BBC Proms to Bernstein's Young People's Concerts, initiatives to promote classical music have been a pervasive feature of twentieth-century musical life. The goal of these initiatives was rarely just to reach a larger and more diverse audience but to teach a particular way of listening that would help the public 'appreciate' music. This book examines for the first time how and why music appreciation has had such a defining and long-lasting impact--well beyond its roots in late-Victorian liberalism. It traces the networks of music educators, philanthropists, policy-makers, critics, composers, and musicians who, rather than resisting new mass media, sought to harness their pedagogic potential; and explores how listening became embroiled in a nexus of modern problems around citizenship, leisure, and education. In so doing, it ultimately reveals how a new cultural milieu--the middlebrow--emerged at the heart of Britain's experience of modernity"--Description based on print version record and CIP data provided by publisher.