Talk:Malcolm Sargent

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2006 article expansion[edit]

I expanded the article quite a bit, but I don't have a reference listing Sargent's non-G&S recordings. Would someone please add that under the "Recordings" heading? --Ssilvers 13:25, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

I have added a few more recordings to give a non G&S flavour, but can not find anything like a complete list. PaulJones 20:03, 2 September 2006 (UTC)

I don't know if it's Beecham's most famous quip, but it's certainly the most famous quotation about Sargent. Csrster 13:35, 31 October 2006 (UTC)

Title of article[edit]

The title of this article is 'Sir Malcolm Sargent'. Should it not be 'Malcolm Sargent' tout court, or is it too late to do anything about that? (And does any clever Wikipedia user know how?) Tim riley 23:29, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm not that clever, but I think I did it! -- Ssilvers 00:08, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, I think it's clever! Thank you. Tim riley 08:59, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Trips abroad by Sir Malcolm Sargent[edit]

I live in Montevideo, Uruguay. In reading the article, I find no comment on his visit to this country sometime between 1950 and 1953. I have Sir Malcom's dedication to me with his signature but it is undated. Can the author inform me the actual date of Sir Malcom's visit to Uruguay? He conducted the Montevideo Philarmonic Orchestra and wore a white carnation at the time.

Sincerely, Gordon F. Little

Sorry, I don't have that information. Can you find a newspaper review that we can cite? -- Ssilvers 01:13, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I have Charles Reid's biography of Sargent, and will consult it this evening and report back. Tim riley 10:38, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Sir Malcolm Sargent made two tours of South America in the early 1950s. In 1950 (8th May to the third week in July) he conducted in:

  • Buenos Aires (4 concerts)
  • Montevideo (2 concerts) with S.O.D.R.E., the Montevideo radio orchestra
  • Rio de Janiero (1)
  • Santiago (6)

His programmes included Vaughan Williams ‘London’ and 6th Symphonies; Haydn Symphony No 88, Beethoven Symphony No 8, Mozart ‘Jupiter’, Schubert Fifth, Brahms 2 & 4, Sibelius 5, Elgar’s Serenade for Strings, Britten ‘Purcell Variations’, Strauss ‘Till Eulenspiegl’, Walton Viola Concerto and Dvořák Cello Concerto (with Pierre Fournier.) The President of Uruguay addressed him thus: “We Uruguayans are fond of all English people, Sir Malcolm, but especially fond of you.”

In June and July 1952 Sargent conducted in all the above-mentioned cities and also in Lima. Half his repertory on that tour consisted of British music, and included Delius, Vaughan Williams, Britten, Walton, and Handel’s ‘Water Music’.

Info from Reid's biography. Hope this is helpful. Tim riley 05:54, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Tim, I added this info to Sargent's article. Would you kindly add a page number(s) from Reid? Should we note any other tours? Best regards, -- Ssilvers 15:46, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Prologue[edit]

Stick to MS's fame as a choral conductor, I suggest. He was undoubtedly in demand as a concerto conductor, but that isn't his chief claim to fame. The choirs and the Proms are. (I must, en passant add something about his long relationship with the Huddersfield Choral Society) Tim Riley 17:40, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

I added a mention of G&S in the intro. I bet that Sargent's best selling recordings have been G&S over the years. If you disagree, feel free to revert. -- Ssilvers 22:40, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

References[edit]

Emerson7 did an excellent upgrade/wikification of the reference list but deleted the references to the Daily Mirror Discography and the Gramophone article. Tim, don't we need those? -- Ssilvers 13:14, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

Emerson7, it is preferable to have the separate "References" section, to which the "Notes" section refers. Please see WP:CITE in the paragraph called Maintaining a separate "References" section in addition to "Notes" -- Ssilvers 14:17, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

Later career[edit]

What is the context of 'The concertos' in the third sentence of paragraph 1 [of the Later Career section]? Where these part of the programme of the NBC concerts? PaulJones 08:28, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

Yes, they were part of the NBC concerts, but I wonder if, in the second sentence, we mean "concertos" instead of "concerts". Tim, can you answer the question? -- Ssilvers 15:53, 21 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes. MS, like many conductors of his day, often favoured the traditional Overture-Concerto-Symphony format, and for his appearances with the NBC SO the two concertos he programmed were those mentioned. Toscanini had had the Enigma in his repertoire for years, but the Elgar violin concerto was, I should think, more of a rarity for the NBC orch. The Walton would be even less familiar, so MS was perhaps doing a spot of missionary work for English compositions. Tim Riley 18:30, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

Can you edit the paragraph in question to clarify the relationship between the second and third sentences? Best regards, -- Ssilvers 19:50, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the clarification. PaulJones 08:26, 28 April 2007 (UTC)

Made compliant with copyright, I hope[edit]

I've made some changes that eliminate the copyright problems this page had. These are:

  • I moved the picture of Reid's biography of Sargent to the references section. Fair use does not allow book covers to be used as portraits.
  • I removed the picture of the book cover used as a portrait of Edwina Mountbatten. There is no way this could possibly be used under fair use.
  • I added an exemption rationale for the book cover of Reid's biography, stating that it is used to identify the main source of information for this article.
  • I added an exemption rationale for the LP cover of Sargent at the Proms, stating it is used as an illustration to the fact he had directed many Proms, which is discussed in the article. BTW, this part (directing the Proms) should really be expanded for fair use being used without doubt.

Errabee 23:40, 2 May 2007 (UTC)

Done. Do you judge this article A-class yet? -- Ssilvers 02:49, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

It's close, but I don't think it's just there yet. My main concern is section Recordings. You might want to try for Good Article instead, or if you feel confident, you might want to ask for an A-class review. Errabee 08:35, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

LOL! I see now that you *ARE* the new A-class review project. No offense intended (and you can stop reading here if you don't want to hear me rant a little), but I fundamentally disagree with your understanding of what A-class means. I believe that A-Class was intended to be less rigorous than GA (and, indeed, that A and GA were intended for different KINDS of articles, as I stated to you before). Otherwise, why do we need A-class at all if you can go directly from B to GA to FA. I believe that A-class is supposed to say: "This article is complete and covers its subject thoroughly. It just needs better referencing or a little prettying up to be FA." Frankly, I think your view kills the utility of the A-class altogether, and I note that the articles being considered over at the new A-class review project are being routinely opposed. But, since you have established the A-class review project, your view will prevail. Perhaps we will submit the article for GA review, but for the record, I think it is just silly to call this article B-class. -- Ssilvers 13:59, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

No offense taken, and no offense intended, but you misinterpret the meaning of A-class. A-class articles are more rigorous than GA-class, but not quite ready yet to achieve FA-status. This is not my view, this is the view adopted by the Wiki 1.0 Project. Order of classes is Stub < Start < B < GA < A < FA. Also, I am not the A-class review project. I set it up, and tried to stir it up. Currently, I am only selecting articles that are to undergo a review, rather than reviewing myself. The articles being considered over at the A-class review are not routinely opposed. We have confirmed A-class for 1 article and promoted 3 other articles to A-class. Errabee 14:10, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

The article assessment instructions for GA state (at the end): "being a Good article is not a requirement for A-Class." Can you clarify these instructions? First of all, the statement should be made in the A-Class instructions, not the GA instructions. Perhaps the GA instruction should say something like "GA is the normal next step after B, but if your article is nearly ready to be an FA, it may be submitted for A-Class review instead", and then a consistent statment could be made in the A-Class instruction. Right now, I don't think that the description for assessment of either GA or A are clear about how to distinguish them from each other, and why something might be promoted to GA but not to A. -- Ssilvers 22:18, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

This is to prevent bureaucracy. If an article is close to FA and can be considered to be A-grade, you don't need to go through the process of GA first. That said, something that would not be promoted to GA, would certainly fail an A-class review. I'll think about your suggestion of rephrasing the quality scale requirements. Errabee 08:42, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your consideration. I really do think it is unclear to people who are trying to do article assessment. BTW, the article assessments at the WP:MUSICALS project are laughably inflated, but I do not want to argue with a particular editor there, so I will not change them. Feel free to take a look and wreak justice with your terrible swift sword. Thanks also for your suggestions below. I am going to let Tim take the lead here, and I know he is going on a short vacation ("holiday", 'cause he's British), so I'm not sure if he'll get to it before he goes. The comment about "ruining the band" was added by someone fairly recently, and I have no idea if it's even true. -- Ssilvers 14:02, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Prom programming[edit]

By the 1950s the programming of the Proms was largely dictated by the BBC, and when William Glock took over as BBC Controller of Music Sargent's role in setting out programmes was further reduced.

En passant, Proms in MS's day didn't half go on. In 1994 I went to a commemorative re-run of a 1960 Sargent programme which brought home to me how much shorter concerts have become in recent years. The first half was Ireland’s London Overture (a longish 15 mins, I guess), a worthy song cycle by Lennox Berkeley and Rachmaninov’s 2nd Piano Concerto (soloist, Moura Lympany). This, at a pinch, could constitute a whole programme nowadays. The second half was Till Eulenspiegel and Vaughan Williams’s 5th Symphony. I have to say that even the prommers’ famous concentration was fraying a bit by the end and had it been any other VW symphony so might mine have been.

By the bye, the Prommers are and always have been famously silent when the music is being played. The reference to MS twitting them for being noisy is true only of the last night of the season, where a certain licence was allowed. Tim Riley 20:22, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, Tim. Can you edit the paragraph to describe in better detail Sargent's Proms-related activities? Also, based on what you have written above, I would suggest that the Proms article needs some attention, as it would appear that it contains a number of inaccuracies or implications that are misleading. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 22:22, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Pre A-class review[edit]

I'd be willing to submit this article for an A-class review, but I'm afraid there are still some textual points that need to be handled first:

  • In his early career, it is said that "As Sargent completed the piece so late", but this lacks context. So late compared to what? Was he supposed to complete it earlier?

Yes, he was supposed to complete it earlier, but I think Tim's edit does the trick. -- SS

  • In National Fame, the abbreviations RCS and LSO are used. I don't think it is customary to use abbreviations like this in encyclopedic text, so please rephrase.
  • The Ballets Russes existed from 1909 till 1929 (according to their article), but here it is mentioned that he conducted them until 1930. It appears some fact checking is necessary.
  • The National Fame section is not chronological. I'd expect the Ballets Russes and RCS mentioned after D'Oyly.
  • balked? Can this be replaced with something more neutral, like complain or protest or something similar?
  • The last paragraph of National Fame, though interesting, appears a bit odd in this section. Perhaps a section of its own could be created for it (and take it outside of his career)?
  • The war years: what was his reason for returning to England?
  • The war years: why is the price of the concerts mentioned? It isn't used anywhere else, and as such lacks context. Is it a much higher or lower price? If higher, what was done with the money, was it used to e.g. fund the war effort? Those things would merit the inclusion of the price.
  • Proms and later years: split the Proms and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, because you now introduce the Proms first, then the BBC, comment on the BBC, and then a return to the Proms. Better would be introduction of the Proms, paragraph of the Proms, introduction of the BBC, comment on the BBC.
  • Why was he accused of almost wrecking the BBC band? What did he do to deserve that?

The BBC band comment is problematic, because apparently no one except the editor who inserted the reference has the book referred to. I have no reason to believe that the accusation is true, and as Tim's edit makes clear, Sargent continued to conduct and record for BBC. -- Ssilvers 12:53, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

  • The memorials section is in need of expansion; it reads like a set of incoherent stub statements.
  • The Recording section needs also to be enhanced. The Beethoven, Sullivan and Walton entries are good, the Handel and Sibelius less so, and I recommend moving all the others into 1 entry if they cannot be expanded.

I combined a couple. Is that better? -- Ssilvers

  • The external links could use some pruning, I think.

I hope this helps with improving the article further. Errabee 10:30, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Addressed most of the above. BBC & Proms are intermingled - inextricably so, as the BBC runs the Proms. The 'wrecking' comment was added by another contributor, quoting a writer who is famous for tendentious statements. I cannot vouch for it, and believe it to be incorrect, but I don't feel justified in deleting it. I'll have a go at the discography when I get back next week. Tim Riley 07:04, 5 May 2007 (UTC)
Hi there. As the contributor of the "wrecking" comment, I hope you'll forgive me for getting a little annoyed by its persistent removal. Maybe other editors don't own Lebrecht's book -- well I don't happen to own the books used to source most of the positive comments about Sargent here: does that entitle me to delete all the text that is based on their citations? In fact there was and has always been a direct link to the exact page of the text of the book containing the criticism at Google Books. Just click on the title of the book in the reference. Thus anyone reading this article can read the original text for him or herself, which is more than could be said for most of the other references cited by this article.
Lebrecht may or may not be famous for tendentious statements, but he is a very well-known and widely-published author, the comment is correctly attributed to him and the reader is free to follow the Google Books link to see the passage in context and to decide on the value of the criticism for him or herself. Please don't delete sourced content without explanation or discussion. Thank you. Grover cleveland 08:33, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Two questions[edit]

There is one ambiguity that I have wondered about. Did Sargent's name "become synonymous" with Hiawatha or with Royal Albert Hall?

Secondly, an editor changed "concertos" to "concerti" in one or more places, but the article continues to refer to "concertos" in other places. Which term should we use, bearing in mind that this article is choosing British usage? Whichever it is, we should use the same term throughout the article. -- Ssilvers 12:51, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

I meant that MS was synonymous with Hiawatha - by all means redraw if I have not made that plain. As to concerti-v-concertos, I recommend the latter: otherwise we shall find ourselves referring to the popular television series "The Soprani". Broadly speaking, where there is an English plural of an Italian word (cellos/celli; maestros/maestri etc) it must, I think, be right, to use the English form for English pages. Tim Riley 16:25, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, Tim, and welcome back! I made two changes to address these points. Please review. -- Ssilvers 04:39, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

info for GA review[edit]

This article is currently being reviewed for GA compliance. Here is a useful comment that was made at the A-class review:

...I'd like to more information about his early life: family background, schooling, etc. (An info box that contained more biographical data: spouse, children, parents, etc., would be helpful.) The list of references needs to be alphabetized. The picture of Reid's book, "a key source for this article," seems promotional and unprofessional more than scholarly and informative. I find it hard to believe there are no pictures of a man of this caliber in the public domain. -- Jancarhart 20:49, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

-- Ssilvers 14:27, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

I changed this header, because it might otherwise look like the GA review is actually taking place, while we are still waiting for a reviewer. FYI, I removed the omage of Reid's book, so that part of the comment has been dealt with. I've also been looking for a public domain image, and I couldn't find any, except a very unattractive picture at the BBC website which might qualify under fair use. Errabee 14:35, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

How does one identify an image, say on the internet, as being available under fair use or PD? -- Ssilvers 14:57, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

Free images on the net have to be accompanied explicitly with a copyright notice on that site that amounts to our GFDL. You have to assume all other images are copyrighted. Copyrighted images can always be used as fair use if they meet the criteria mentioned in WP:FU#Policy. No free equivalent seems easy, but criteria 3b and 8 are the most important. This means you cannot use a CD, LP or book cover as a portrait of Malcolm Sargent. They can be used (under fair use) in the article about the CD, LP or book, because they identify the subject. Now, if you discuss a particular CD or LP in another article, you can use the image over there as well, but only in the section where that CD or LP is being discussed. I hope this sheds some light into the murky waters of copyright (and I may well miss some nuances, as I am no lawyer and had to learn all this the hard way). Errabee 19:36, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

That seems like a good summary. Thanks! -- Ssilvers 21:05, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

Put photos of Sargent in[edit]

This article deserves it. Maybe someone could take out one or two of the others (paintings) as they seem to clutter the article a bit. egde 10:11, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

I put another photo in, but I see the Mikado poster is back in. That's totally OK with me, but you might find the reviewer commenting about there being too many so close together. (They only like photos/images in that refer directly to the subject, and the dates of the posters/paintings do not relate to Sargent's lifetime)  :) egde 17:12, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

I agree that we might take one or two images out, but I am not sure which ones yet, so I put the Mikado poster back in for now. I'd like some other people to take a look at the article, now that it includes all of these new images to see if we can all agree on which images are the most helpful and which are unnecessary. Thanks! -- Ssilvers 18:44, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Uhhh - good work, the positioning and size of the images is looking much better now - nice one. egde 19:09, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. Is the image in the infobox distorted? It seems a little squished to me? -- Ssilvers 22:02, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Fixed now! Best regards, -- Ssilvers 03:07, 30 May 2007 (UTC)
Good job with the pictures, although I am not certain if fair use is applicable for the conducting in 1950s and with Haifetz pictures. Errabee 01:04, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

GA Review in progress[edit]

Hello - we're finally clearing the backlog. This is to let you know that the article is now under review, and I expect to post something here in the next 24-36 hours. Regards --Fritzpoll 17:15, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

OK, thanks! -- Ssilvers 18:01, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
It is now the 4th of June... andreasegde 22:09, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Apologies - I thought I would give you enough time to resolve the picture issue (the one tagged for speedy deletion) considering the image criterion of the quick-fail guide. Your review will appear in the next day, I promise, so you might want to resolve it by then! --Fritzpoll 22:32, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

?Is there an image that is tagged? Which one? -- Ssilvers 03:49, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Look underneath the main picture - it seems the picture is considered to violate fair use. --Fritzpoll 06:19, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Fixed. The picture was given a summary and a fair use rationale, but the caption was not seen. andreasegde 07:19, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

GA Review - Fail[edit]

I'm afraid after a thorough review of the article, I have decided to fail it at this time for failure to meet the standards of neutral point of view, prose style, and lack of encyclopaedic tone. My comments on specific corrections are listed below.

Lead - see WP:LEAD for guidance if necessary

  • "He was widely regarded as Britain's leading conductor of choral works." - according to whom? References in the lead are acceptable where appropriate, otherwise NPOV may appear to be violated.
  • "The well-known ensembles with which he was associated..."" - surely he can't be associated with something unless it is well known? If this qualifier has to be retained, I recommend "The most popular ensembles..." since I think that this is what you are trying to say. Again, though, how are they well known? You should also wikilink "ensemble"
  • "London's most prestigious summer music festival" - NPOV. I challenge this statement. Saying it is a summer music festival in London is correct, but most prestigious?
  • "he was one of the best-known English conductors" - reference? Otherwise this reads as an opinion.
Even without references, this is not an opinion, but a widely acknowledged statement of truth. "He was the best", or "...one of the best" is an opinion. "Madonna is one of the most popular recording artists of the last twenty years" is not an opinion, and would need no reference..."Madonna is one of the best singers..." is an opinion. Thank you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.161.101.151 (talk) 18:37, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
  • "To generations of Gilbert and Sullivan fans, he has been a major interpreter of their works through his recordings of the most popular Savoy Operas." - the English here is fairly ambiguous, and the tone is very casual. Surely if he is an interpreter of their works, he is for everyone, not just people who enjoy Gilbert and Sullivan? The English here needs correcting in any case, since it does not read well.

Life and career

  • What were his parents' names?
  • "At eighteen, he was a Bachelor of Music" - I think use of more common English is here. Do you mean he was awarded this degree? If so, where from?

Early Career

  • Why was his spell in the army brief? Was it National Service? "After a brief service in the army" reads better as "After spending a brief period in the army..."
  • "...where he not only conducted but also produced Gilbert and Sullivan and other operas..." He produced Gilbert and Sullivan, or their operas? It isn't actually clear.
  • Reference Sargent's debut, and Wood "recognising his worth"
  • "on the advice of Wood among others." - reference this comment.

National Fame

  • "Sargent became one of the best-known English conductors." - again, reference this. I believe this to be a challengable statement per WP:CITE
  • ...of The Mikado, in 1926, heard by up to..." - are all these commas really necessary?

Difficult years and war years

  • Any quotes by people need to be referenced.
  • Justify the assertion that he faced hostility with a reference.

The Proms and later years

  • "almost wreck[ing]" - is the ing in the original reference? If not, rewrite this sentence to accomodate the original quote.
  • An example of a lack of encyclopaedic tone "prommers" - this is not a common word. Use something more formal.

Personal life, reputation and legacy

  • (who liked Sargent) called him a bounder;[46] Ethel Smyth (who did not) called him a "cad" - far too informal.
  • This section needs a good copyedit to help change the tone from informal to formal.

General points

  • Generally well-referenced, but all quotes by people must be referenced if this is to pass GA
  • The tone, particularly in the later sections (including those not specifically mentioned above) is often quite informal. This is a shame, because much of the early part of the article is written in an encyclopaedic manner.
  • I would try to avoid bullet points. They are used here in a manner that is not really appropriate, since they are not brief lists, but are quite substantial in themselves. Convert these to prose.
  • Try to avoid pictures indenting the text as "The Mikado" does, since it makes the article naturally untidy
  • I recommend a concerted effort to read the article through checking for grammatical errors - especially when it comes to use of commas
  • I would also stop putting pieces of information in brackets/parentheses when they can be included in the main body of the text


These changes are not insubstantial, and to be done properly will take more than the seven day maximum that an article can be on hold for. As a result, I have failed the article at this time, but recommend renominating it in the future when this article has been updated using the recommendations above. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to place them on my talk page. Best wishes --Fritzpoll 22:12, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the comments. I think we can respond to these comments rather quickly. They're mostly grammatical/stylistic. -- Ssilvers 22:57, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Revised[edit]

The article has now been revised, and I belive that the points above have been addressed. Any further comments welcome! -- Ssilvers 23:46, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Lebrecht quote[edit]

Re the LEBRECHT quote in the middle of the article, just because Lebrecht said it, that doesn't make it true or notable. Lebrecht gives no source or basis for this opinion. It appears, from all the other references, that Lebrecht's opinion is dubious - rumour at best and possibly a spiteful lie. I don't think this source qualifies as a WP:RS. I have added some cautionary information to the footnote, but I don't think it is appropriate to include dubious material in the article, and I don't think it's notable simply because one person said it. Every major historical person had enemies, but we should discuss serious criticism. How did Sargent supposedly "wreck" the BBC orchestra? What did the critcs say about its playing before, during and after Sargent's tenure? -- Ssilvers 16:24, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi S. I'm copying this comment over from my personal talk page. Value judgments, especially about artistic matters, are inevitably subjective. That is why Wikipedia has the NPOV policy to ensure that comments and criticism are attributed to their authors rather than plainly asserted in the article. For this reason I'm not sure that it makes much sense to say that Lebrecht's comment is or is not "true" in any objective sense. To say that it is a "spiteful lie" would imply that Lebrecht didn't really believe that Sargent lowered the quality of the orchestra, but just said it anyway to hurt Sargent or his admirers. I don't think that there is any reason to believe that this is the case -- I've heard many people comment negatively on Sargent's skills as an orchestral builder.
If you disagree with Lebrecht's criticism, I suggest that you add other citations that contradict Lebrecht, for example by pointing to an improvement in the quality of the BBC band during his tenure. Right now I don't see any such citations. Lebrecht is a well-known published author and his opinions, though controversial, have just as much right to be in this article as all the positive comments about Sargent, which are equally subjective and ultimately based on their respective authors' gut reaction to Sargent. Grover cleveland 16:51, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
Another point: the admiring quote from the violist of the BBC Symphony orchestra is specifically about Sargent's choral, not orchestral, conducting skills. And the fact the Sargent made recordings with the BBC orchestra doesn't mean much without an artistic assessment of the quality of those recordings. I see very little if any praise specifically for Sargent's orchestral conducting skills in this article. Of course, if you have references, please add them: that's what Wikipedia's all about. Grover cleveland 16:56, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

User:Grover cleveland reverted my edits to the article. First, I suggested noting in the text that Lebrecht gives no source for his quote. That is a fact. Second, I suggested that the footnote include cautionary language along these lines: "Lebrecht's accusation is dubious, given Sargent's long tenure with the orchestra and his notable recordings with them, including Holst's The Planets and two Sibelius symphonies, as described in detail in the Recordings section. As noted below, the principal violist of the BBC Symphony Orchestra wrote admiringly of Sargent." Comments, please from other editors? -- Ssilvers 17:00, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

I know you wanted to hear from other editors, not me, but a quick response:
  • We don't require our sources to be sourced themselves. Do all the positive comments about Sargent's musical abilities also give their sources?
  • The notion that Lebrecht's assertion is "dubious" is nothing more than the personal opinion of the editor and is thus not verifiable. The arguments about Sargent's tenure etc. constitute original research and thus should not be included.
  • The article already talks about Sargent's tenure and recordings. There is no need to repeat the reference to them here.
  • The violist's praise was specifically about Sargent's choral, not orchestral, conducting skills. In fact there is no citation in the article that says that Sargent did a good job maintaining the quality of the BBC Symphony Orchestra -- could that possibly be because it is widely agreed that he didn't maintain its quality?
  • More generally, Wikipedia articles are meant to reflect all views about the article's subject. Negative comments, where sourced, have just as much right to appear in the article as positive ones. Grover cleveland 17:07, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
I would delete adjectives and make sure that everything is referenced from a published source. Internet sites do not have restrictions placed upon them by courts of law as writers have (vis-a-vis libel). andreasegde 18:03, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Here are reviews of three separate Sargent BBC recordings here, here and here of piano and violin concertos. The reviews all praise Sargent's conducting.

Lebrecht/Aldous/Reid/Kenyon[edit]

I posted some observations a little while ago but they seem to have vanished into the ether. They were to the effect that:

Lebrecht is not universally regarded as a serious or credible opinion: c.f. the former head of EMI Classics, Peter Alward:

I well remember my own reactions whenever stormin’ Norman launched his latest assault on our supposedly moribund world... He often reminded me of the demented, wild-eyed, toothless crone who used to interrupt the unforgettable Frankie Howerd during his wonderful television series Up Pompeii with her cries of ‘Woe, woe, thrice woe!’. Howerd always dismissed her disdainfully as a ‘poor old soul’ and, to a certain extent, this is the way many of us regarded Lebrecht... He was—and is—an irritant, like a whiffy old uncle visiting for Christmas and outstaying his welcome.

Be that as it may, it would be going too far to put Lebrecht on music in the same class as David Irving on C20th European history, and by all means let the quote stand if (if I correctly understand the matter) someone can give it a page reference as required by the Wikipedia authorities if the article is to get the thumbs up. But if adverse views from orchestral players are thought lacking I can quote two (balanced by one laudatory) from André Previn’s book ‘Orchestra’

I haven’t read the Lebrecht book and have no plans to do so, so can only speculate on his motives for his asseveration. Certainly MS precipitated a crisis in 1952 by making all the BBC SO string players audition for their own jobs; and he followed this up by introducing the then novel though now commonplace arrangement of rotating back desk players. (Reid pp 367/8).

As to MS’s work with the BBC SO, both the biographies cite ample evidence of the high standards in Sargent’s day

Reid:

…Sargent’s liveliness and drive soon gave BBC playing a gloss and briskness which had not been conspicuous before. (p. 369)

Aldous:

Everywhere Sargent and the orchestra performed there were ovations, laurel wreaths and terrific reviews. (p. 187)

The orchestra’s public reputation at home and abroad was at its highest point of the post-war period. (p. 185)

Nicholas Kenyon (official historian of the orchestra) quoted by Aldous, p186:

…the orchestra could play excellently and was still responsive to the enlivening force of Sargent’s direction.

I hope this is helpful. Pray let me know if the quotes from the Previn book are desired. Tim Riley 18:59, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, Tim. I added the Reid and Aldous cites. If the other quotes add anthing, feel free to add them. There is also a "reputation as a conductor" section below, and it could be filled out more, if the quotes are relevant. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 19:22, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

More on Lebrecht quote[edit]

my problem with the quote is that it's a non sequitur. there's no context for the statement and no indication from the editor of the significance for its inclusion. seems to me there should at least be an explanation why and how lebrecht came to this conclusion...otherwise there's no good reason for it to be in the article. --emerson7 | Talk 23:59, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

You're right, of course. I had a look through, and the volume of plaudits for Sarjent's work does need to be cut back a bit (be more selective) - I too would treat Lebrecht with a small pinch of salt. Sarjent comes from a period when anyone who wasn't a primadonna would stick out in the business. I think overall, his reputation came out reasonably intact and history has been kind both to him and his recordings. Lebrecht has made it his business to attack the prevailing attitude and to demonstrate how damaging it was to the institutions that employed these talents. Of course, that was also done with the benefit of hindsight, and an eye to creating controversy.
How do you assess it? The quotes can be batted back and forth, but they seriously underdetermine the facts, and Lebrecht is working from recordings - he's not much older than me, perhaps he did go to Sarjent's last proms (but I doubt it). Contemporary reports perhaps convey some of the freshness of a new conductor, particularly when Boult had effectively reached the end of his productive career. It leaves me wondering what they'll say about Simon Rattle in forty years time ... Kbthompson 00:16, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
As it now stands, I think the Liebrecht quote fits well into the article, and is sufficiently balanced by other material. I say this with no particular opinion on the views Liebrecht expresses. Marc Shepherd 01:43, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
I think this statement should indeed stay, as it is now correctly referenced. Some criticism can never hurt an article, as it shows the NPOV character of the article. Errabee 10:34, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Contemporary music "stopped at Dover"[edit]

According to Briggs, The History of Broadcasting in the United Kingdom, p. 670, Sargent believed "generally speaking" that "contemporary music stopped at Dover" , presumably meaning that the conductor lacked interest in 20th-century music from outside the UK. Here is a link. Briggs cites Reid p. 342 for this statement, but it isn't clear whether this is a quote directly from Sargent or whether this is just Reid's summary of his attitude. Could one of you who has the Reid book clarify? If this quote is directly from Sargent it should surely go in the article. Even if not it might be worth adding some material on Sargent's choice of repertoire in general. There is some info on his recordings but less on his concert rep. Thanks. PS Thanks to all for the resolution of the Lebrecht issue. Cheers. Grover cleveland 19:46, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

The quote and the inference are confirmed on that page of Reid's book. It is not a quote from Sargent, but Reid's take on MS's core repertoire. It reads, 'For Sargent, generally speaking, contemporary music stopped at Dover and when it came to typical programmes, comprised at the outside a score or so pieces by VW, Holst and Walton, with a fringe of Bax plus the [Britten]Young Person's Guide, which recurred nearly as often as the [Holst] Perfect Fool ballet.' But old Asa is being a touch selective in the quote: though Reid notes that MS's regular repertory was not over-burdened with new works by composers from outside the UK, he also refers to the non-Brit novelties introduced by Sargent (e.g. p 366 - Strauss, Orff, Martin, Prokoviev, Honneger, Barber, Shostakovich) - one offs, in many cases, but he still learned them and presented them. See also the official BBC history of the Proms (Cox, op cit), which lists more non-British modern works introduced by MS. Briggs's point is not invalid, but it isn't the whole story. Tim Riley 22:03, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Ahh - thanks. Would you (or anyone else with the sources to hand) mind adding a brief summary of Sargent's non-British repertoire to the article? Cheers. Grover cleveland 22:23, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
I'll have a pop at it tomorrow. Thanks for the prompt. Tim Riley 22:33, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Hi Tim. Thanks for adding the info on Sargent's repertoire. Grover cleveland 16:39, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra[edit]

I've deleted the reference to MS's conducting the RPO in the 20s. He did indeed conduct the orchestra of the Royal Philharmonic Society at that time, but that (long vanished) was not the same entity as the RPO, which Beecham founded after WWII and which Sargent is here mentioned as having helped to rescue after Beecham's death.Tim Riley 07:12, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks. I was fooled by his Times obituary. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 13:42, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

GA on hold[edit]

I have reviewed this article according to the requirments of the GA criteria and have pu the article on hold until the following issues are addressed:

  1. Image:Portrait of Malcolm Sargent.jpg currently has a tag that the image needs to be reduced in size to comply with fair use requirements. I'd say somewhere below 500px would be best.
  • Done

2. Combine "Sir Harold Malcolm Watts Sargent (April 29, 1895 – October 3, 1967) was an English conductor, organist and composer. He was widely regarded as Britain's leading conductor of choral works."

  • Done

3. "The musical ensembles with which he was associated included the Ballets Russes, the Royal Choral Society, the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, and the London Philharmonic, Hallé, Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC Symphony and Royal Philharmonic orchestras." Does there need to be an "and" before London Philharmonic?

  • Yes, because all the names after that are "orchestras", and the word orchestra is only used once at the end of those, so I think that's the best grammatical construction.

4. Do you have any other information you can include about his service in WWI?

  • Done

5. "Sargent was criticised by The Times' review of 20 September, 1926 for adding..." Add wikilinks for full dates.

  • Done

6. Add an inline citation for "Sargent was criticised by The Times' review of 20 September, 1926 for adding "gags" to the Gilbert and Sullivan scores, although it praised the crispness of the ensemble, the "musicalness" of the performance and the beauty of the overture." Also add a wikilink for "The Times".

  • Done

7. "In October 1932, Sargent collapsed with tuberculosis." Collapsed where?

  • Done

8. "He did not conduct opera at Covent Garden again until 1954, with Walton's Troilus and Cressida..." Reword this as it is worded nearly the same as the prior the sentence. Maybe "He did not return to..." or something to that effect.

  • Done

9. Mention in the sentence who said this if it was a quote "He brought professionalism to orchestras by shaking them free of dead wood, clearing out talented dilettantes and pushing the survivors to perform at their best through relentless rehearsal." If it's not a quote, then include the author.

  • This is from an Independent article, but the author is uncredited. I added the name of the paper in the sentence.

10. "Daily Telegraph" should be italicized.

  • Done

11. "Sargent was knighted for his services to music in 1947 and performed in numerous English-speaking countries during the post-war years." Add a source for his being knighted.

  • Done

12. "One author has written that..." For both of the quotes in the next sentneces, you have a period before the quotation marks and in the next one, its after the marks. Choose the correct one and make sure they're both the same. Go through the article and fix any other occurrences.

  • Done

13. "His biographers Reid and Aldous contended, "Sargent's liveliness and drive soon gave BBC playing a gloss and briskness which had not been conspicuous before."[47] "Everywhere Sargent and the orchestra performed there were ovations, laurel wreaths and terrific reviews."[48]" Is this the same quote? If so remove the quotation mark before everywhere. If not, introduce the second quote better.

  • Done

14. "When the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra was in danger of extinction after Beecham's death in 1961, Sargent played a major part in saving the orchestra, doing much to win back the good opinion of orchestral players that he had lost because of his 1936 interview.[54]" Either incoroprate this statement into another paragraph or expand on it, as single sentences shouldn't stand alone.

  • Done

15. "Although orchestral players resented Sargent for much of his career after the 1936 interview[59]," The inline citation should be after the punctuation.

  • Done

16. "By 1926, the couple had two children, a daughter Pamela who was to die of polio in 1944..." Add a wikilink for polio.

  • Done

17. "Among his affairs were long-standing ones with Diana Bowes-Lyon..." Fix the wikilink for Bowes-Lyon, it goes to a disambiguation page.

  • See below

18. The first paragrah of Honours and memorials section has several inline citatiosn that have a space between them and the punctuation, fix them to lack the space.

  • Done

19. "Sargent's own composition, Impression on a Windy Day, has been recorded for CD by the Royal Ballet Sinfonia conducted by Gavin Sutherland on the ASV label." Incorporate or expand.

  • Done

20. "In addition to the concertos noted above, other composers whose concertos he conducted on record, with soloists noted, include: Bach ((Heifetz-Friedman, NSO)..." Remove the extra (.

  • Done

The article is very broad and is well-referenced. It was interesting to read about his continuing of a concert even though a bombing raid was occurring. Address the above issues within seven days and I'll pass the article. The majority of these shouldn't take too long to fix. If you have any questions or when you are done, let me know on my talk page and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. --Nehrams2020 00:30, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

I fixed most of these. Tim, can you handle the rest? -- Ssilvers 04:33, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
Done. Expanded WWI passage and redrafted TB sentence. Not sure what to do about the Bowes-Lyon link. There isn't a Wikipedia article on Diana B-L (nor likely to be, me judice) but she is listed in the article about her father, John Herbert Bowes-Lyon. I've linked to that, but perhaps it would be better to remove the link altogether. Tim Riley 17:01, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

Note that the British punctuation style for possessives of words ending with "s" is s's. -- Ssilvers 18:19, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

GA passed[edit]

I have passed this article according to the requirements of the GA criteria. Excellent work in fixing all of the above issues so quickly. Continue to improve the article and make sure that all new information is properly sourced. Consider getting a peer review to improve the article further and for other users to catch any mistakes I missed. If you have the time, please consider reviewing an article or two at GAC to help with the backlog. There is a current month-long drive, and awards are available to those that review. Keep up the good work, and I hope you continue to improve the quality of articles on Wikipedia. --Nehrams2020 21:07, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:MSstamp.jpg[edit]

Nuvola apps important.svg

Image:MSstamp.jpg is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images uploaded after 4 May, 2006, and lacking such an explanation will be deleted one week after they have been uploaded, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot 10:45, 7 November 2007 (UTC)


I added a specific fair use summary. -- Ssilvers 16:50, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

GA Reassessment[edit]

This discussion is transcluded from Talk:Malcolm Sargent/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the reassessment.
This article is being reviewed as part of the WikiProject Good Articles. We're doing Sweeps to go over all of the current GAs and see if they still meet the GA criteria. So I will be assessing the article.Pyrotec (talk) 13:14, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
A Good Article that, possibly, has the potential to become a Featured Article; however the WP:lead is not particularly good. It acts as an introduction to the article, which it does well; but it hardly provides a summary of the main points of the article. Notwithstanding the poor WP:lead, I'm keeping GA-status.Pyrotec (talk) 14:21, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Please suggest what else you think ought to be covered by the lead, and I'll try to write it (or feel free to do so). I don't know about the other editor who generally edits this article, but I do not have the stomach at present for another FAC. Best regards. -- Ssilvers (talk) 15:47, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. The WP:lead does provide an introduction to the article; but it is not a particularly good summary of the main points of article. The lead should be no more than three or four paragraphs, but this is a long article with a lot of detailed information, so there is scope of at least doubling the length of the lead.
What could be added to the lead is a somewhat personal choice. For instance:
  • The London Philharmonic Orchestra is mentioned in passing, but no mention that Sargent was a founder (co-founder).
  • No mention of war service in WWI and work done in WW II, Honorary degrees, the Malcolm Sargent cancer fund, etc.
  • No mention of his reputation as a hard task master.
  • More could be added about his recordings and his international orchestra tours.
  • Some expansion of the proms (and, possibly, immediate successors).
  • Possibly his personal life could be mentioned (some of it is not all that complementary, hence the "personal choice").
I would aim to double the length of the lead, but not to try to include everything. If it helps, I'm happy to have a look at what you produce and if necessary to work on it with you. Pyrotec (talk) 16:13, 28 June 2009 (UTC)
I've had a first shot at this. All contributions gratefully received. Tim riley (talk) 18:18, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

Watney-Sargent Award[edit]

While researching for Neville Dilkes, I came across mention of the Watney-Sargent Award, of which Dilkes was the first recipient and Sargent was on the judging panel. There are a few scant online references to winners of this award, but nothing about what it is, whether it is still awarded, or who or what Watney is or was. Surely not the Watney of "Watney's Red Barrel" fame? Any clues, folks? -- Jack of Oz [your turn] 11:07, 10 January 2012 (UTC)

Interesting. There's nothing in Grove or in either the Reid or Aldous biographies of Sargent. Rummaging in the Musical Times archives I see Oliver Knussen won the Watney/Sargent award for 1969–70 (in the same list of announcements that included Colin Davis's appointment to the ROH, Boulez's to the NYPO, Pritchard's to Glyndebourne, and John Tooley's to the ROH, and the rather oddly-worded news that "André Previn has been relieved of his post with the Houston SO") Other winners of the Watney/Sargent conductors' awards were Leonard Atherton and Michael Lankester in 1967–68. In July 1968 it was announced that Barbirolli had accepted an invitation to choose the annual holder of the Watney/Sargent Award for Young Conductors. And that's it – no further mentions of the award after 1970. The Times also reports on the above winners, but makes no further mention of the award after 1970. One Times article says that the award was "set up in 1963 to give young musicians who have completed their academic training a sabbatical year before embarking on their professional careers." ("Boy conductor gets award, The Times, 21 May 1969, p. 13) – Tim riley (talk) 12:08, 10 January 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, Tim. It seems to have faded into nothingness. But curious that it still appears on biogs of certain people, as if readers would be expected to know what it is. -- Jack of Oz [your turn] 12:20, 10 January 2012 (UTC)
I am amazed at how bad the self-written bios can be of even very intelligent artists. Piles of fluff, including awards for toilet training, but no useful history of the artist and his/her work. I recently put up the article on Conrad Tao, and his bio was of little assistance. -- Ssilvers (talk) 20:57, 10 January 2012 (UTC)

Blacklisted Links Found on the Main Page[edit]

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Leicester Symphony Orchestra[edit]

I'd like to recommend mention of the Leicester Symphony Orchestra in the appropriate spot in Malcolm Sargent's article. He's noted as the founder in 1922 and continued to serve as conductor until 1942. Sources are easily available if necessary. Not only is a 20 years association significant, but it was also one of the projects that helped him get started on his career. Pkeets (talk) 19:33, 28 June 2014 (UTC)

As I have admitted rather shamefacedly on my talk page, I had quite forgotten that the orchestra is already mentioned in the third paragraph of the "Early career" section, which I think I probably wrote, albeit a fair few years ago. Tim riley talk 20:09, 28 June 2014 (UTC)
I took a look at the coverage of this in the Early career section, and it seems to be about the right amount. Does anyone disagree? -- Ssilvers (talk) 20:59, 28 June 2014 (UTC)
May need a small tweak in re professional-v-amateur, but that apart I think it's all right. I hadn't realised that Pkeets hadn't read the article, but after doing so I think he/she will see that the orchestra has been covered. Tim riley talk 21:14, 28 June 2014 (UTC)
It's fine, thanks. Pkeets (talk) 22:17, 28 June 2014 (UTC)