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In Search of Nightingales: The Diary of Elizabeth Campbell 1933 – 34

FCM members may be interested in a new newly published edition of this book:

“Nature-loving Elizabeth filled her days with outings; but her daily pursuit of London’s musical, liturgical and social experiences makes her portrait of divided Depression-era Britain compelling.”

Excerpt from review by Graeme Kay, ‘Choir & Organ Magazine’

In 1933, celebrated Australian organist and choir manager Elizabeth Campbell returned to England as part of the Royal College of Music’s Jubilee celebrations. In 1927, she had studied the organ and conducting under the expert guidance of close friend and mentor Dr Henry Ley, gaining exceptional marks and giving recitals at Glyndebourne and elsewhere. During her year’s return from May 1933-July 1934 she keeps a daily diary, painting a unique portrait of London and England’s people, towns and countryside. And when not dashing around her beloved Wren city churches and seemingly the rest of England (including the Three Choirs Festival in the company of Sir Walter Alcock, George Bernard Shaw and Dr John Masefield), she is rehearsing ‘Elijah’ with the Albert Hall choir under Sir Henry Wood and Sir Thomas Beecham, offering interesting insights into their personalities – as she does with everyone she meets. Then, in January 1934, an honour beyond her belief, when she is invited to become the first person to broadcast live to the world on the BBC’s new Compton organ, a nerve-racking experience humorously described but consummately handled. This just a week after being presented at Court to the King & Queen, whom she adores.

The book is published by Jaromin Publishing and is available on Amazon.  If you wish to purchase a copy please click here.