Now available in paperback to coincide with the 50th anniversary of his death, this biography corrects many of the myths surrounding the often controversial Thomas Beecham.
Thomas Beecham was one of Britain's greatest conductors of orchestral music and opera as well as an entrepreneur and impresario of exceptional energy and brilliant wit. This acclaimed biography places him - musically, politically and socially - in the troubled times in which he lived and corrects the stories and myths, many of them Beecham's own making, that have grown up around this uniquely gifted and controversial figure.Drawing upon extensive research, Lucas presents new material on his early years, his complicated private life, his father's catastrophic attempt to buy a large part of Covent Garden - which brought the family to its knees financially - and the orchestras and opera companies that Beecham founded. New light is shed on his visits to Nazi Germany and his view of its leaders, as well as the much misunderstood and previously unchronicled years of the Second World War, which he spent in Australia and America.Thomas Beecham: An Obsession with Music will remain the standard biography for years to come.JOHN LUCAS was on the staff of the Observer for 25 years, completed Peter Heyworth's monumental biography of Otto Klemperer, wrote Genius of Valhalla, the biography of Reginald Goodall, and is responsible for the current entries on Beecham and Klemperer in the New Grove .
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