Lord Berners
Title Details

304 Pages

24.4 x 17.2 cm

44 colour. 14 b/w. 1 line. Illustrations

Imprint: Boydell Press

Lord Berners

Composer, Writer, Painter

by Peter Dickinson

  • Description
  • Reviews
Interviews with leading figures and contemporaries who knew Lord Berners and his work, set into context and fully annotated.
Lord Berners was one of the most colourful and flamboyant personalities of his day. A composer, writer, painter, and eccentric (famous for dyeing his pigeons into rainbow hues), he knew everyone in the worlds of the arts and of society in the first half of the twentieth century, and formed the model for Lord Merlin in Nancy Mitford's The Pursuit of Love. He was admired by Stravinsky, collaborated with Diaghilev and Gertrude Stein, and his five ballets were choreographed by Balanchine and Frederick Ashton.

This book offers a refreshingly new documentary approach - interviews with leading figures and contemporaries who knew him and his work, set into context and complemented with much further information. The interviewees include Ashton, the writers Lord David Cecil and Harold Acton, the composers Richard Rodney Bennett and Gavin Bryars, Diana Mosley (one of the six Mitford sisters) and more;there are also studies by Peter Dickinson. There are numerous colour plates and other illustrations.

PETER DICKINSON, the composer and pianist, is emeritus professor, University of Keele and University of London. He has written or edited several books about twentieth-century music, including Copland Connotations (2002), The Music of Lennox Berkeley (2003), and CageTalk (2006).
"A fascinating story of a fascinating man." AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE
"A fascinating portrait." LAVENDER MAGAZINE
"The book is...an enjoyable read for the general reader, evoking a lost age." THE TIMES
"[A] sympathetic and valuable account." CLASSICAL MUSIC
"This new study adds generously to the store of first-hand testimony for future attempts to assess this most curious product of the Brideshead era." GRAMOPHONE
"The finest book yet on Lord Berners...The book's layout is the best I've seen in a long time." THE DELIAN
"Utterly invaluable and a fascinating read." BMS NEWS
"I think Stravinsky was right to point to Berners as being one of the best English composers of the century. He didn't produce a lot of work but what he did produce was remarkable." Gavin Bryars

Paperback

9781843835516

June 2010

£19.99 / $25.95

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Title Details

304 Pages

2.44 x 1.72 cm

44 colour. 14 b/w. 1 line. Illustrations

Imprint: Boydell Press