Robert Irving

Biography

Born: August 28, 1913; Winchester, England   Died: September 13, 1991; Winchester, England  
Perhaps the least glamorous sort of conducting, aside from church choirs, is for ballet. Yet Robert Irving brought dignity and nuance to his work as one of the two most prominent ballet conductors (the other being John Lanchbery) in the second half of the twentieth century. He made several recordings, mainly for EMI in the 1950s and '60s, which attest to his sensitivity to the needs of dancers (who generally require slower tempos than are favored Read more in concert performances) without seeming to plod. He composed some film and theater music of his own and was also known for his advocacy of contemporary music, but it was in the ballet theater pit where he made his greatest mark.

In his late teens, Irving attended Winchester College in his hometown and for university chose New College, Oxford, where he obtained his bachelor of music degree in 1935. He also studied at London's Royal College of Music (1934 - 1936) with the provocative Constant Lambert and the lackadaisical Malcolm Sargent. Significantly, he made his debut in 1935 with a theater group, the Oxford University Opera Club. Irving made no notable career advances until immediately after World War II, when he was engaged for three seasons as associate conductor of the BBC Scottish Orchestra in Glasgow. In 1948, he became principal conductor and music director of the Sadler's Wells (later Royal) Ballet in London, where he mastered the standard ballet repertory and remained until 1958. That year, he moved to America to become music director of the New York City Ballet, a post he held until his retirement in 1989.

At City Ballet, he presided over not only the big Romantic ballets, but also a number of twentieth century works. His most significant achievement in the latter realm was the company's enormous Stravinsky commemoration in 1972, which involved 22 ballets. Meanwhile, Irving moonlighted with the Martha Graham Dance Company, an ensemble working primarily with twentieth century scores. He conducted that company's New York seasons in 1960 - 1965 and 1974 - 1977. Irving also returned to the Royal Ballet as guest conductor from 1978. Irving didn't spend all his time in the pit. He guest conducted many concert ensembles, including the Philadelphia Orchestra; National Symphony Orchestra of Washington, D.C.; Suisse Romande Orchestra; and the major London orchestras. He received the Capezio Award in 1975 and the Dance Magazine Award in 1984. Read less

Biography

Born: August 28, 1913; Winchester, England   Died: September 13, 1991; Winchester, England  
Perhaps the least glamorous sort of conducting, aside from church choirs, is for ballet. Yet Robert Irving brought dignity and nuance to his work as one of the two most prominent ballet conductors (the other being John Lanchbery) in the second half of the twentieth century. He made several recordings, mainly for EMI in the 1950s and '60s, which attest to his sensitivity to the needs of dancers (who generally require slower tempos than are favored Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
The Age Of Gold Suite, Op. 22: Introduction
The Age Of Gold Suite, Op. 22: Polka
The Age Of Gold Suite, Op. 22: Dance
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Prélude in A, Op.28 No.7
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Nocturne in A Flat, Op.32 No.2
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Valse in G Flat, Op.70 No.1
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Mazurka in D, Op.33 No.2
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Mazurka in C, Op.67 No.3
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Prélude in A, Op.28 No.7
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Valse in C Sharp Minor, Op.64 No.2
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Grande Valse brillante in E Flat, Op.18
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 1, Introduction (Andante dolce)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 2, Pas de châle (Allegretto)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 9, Cinderella dreams of the Ball (Andante dolce)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 10, Gavotte (Allegretto)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 17, Interrupted departure (Vivo)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 1: No. 19, Cinderella's departure for the Ball (Allegro espressivo)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 28, Mazurka (Allegro ma non troppo)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 29, Cinderella's arrival at the Ball (Allegretto - Andante)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 30, Grand Waltz (Allegretto)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 34, The Guests take refreshment (Moderato)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 35, Duet of the Sisters with their Oranges (Allegro con brio)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 36, Pas de deux: The Prince and Cinderella (Adagio)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 37, Waltz-Coda (Allegro espressivo)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 2: No. 38, Midnight (Allegro moderato)
Cinderella - Ballet Op. 87 (excerpts), ACT 3: No. 50, Amoroso (Andante dolcissimo)
Pas de deux: Kitri and Basilio (Act III): I. Entree
Pas de deux: Kitri and Basilio (Act III): II. Adage
Pas de deux: Kitri and Basilio (Act III): III. Basilio's Solo
Pas de deux: Kitri and Basilio (Act III): IV. Kitri's Solo
Pas de deux: Kitri and Basilio (Act III): V. Coda
Giselle (2008 Remastered Version): Valse (Act I)
Giselle (2008 Remastered Version): Pas de deux (Act II)
Giselle (2008 Remastered Version): Valse (Act I)
Giselle (2008 Remastered Version): Pas de deux (Act II)
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Prélude in A, Op.28 No.7
Les Sylphides (1994 Remastered Version): Grande Valse brillante in E Flat, Op.18
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): Very Slowly
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): Allegro
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): Moderato
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): Fast
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): Subito allegro
Appalachian Spring (2001 Digital Remaster): As at first (slowly)
Four Dance Episodes from "Rodeo" (2001 Digital Remaster): Buckaroo Holiday
Four Dance Episodes from "Rodeo" (2001 Digital Remaster): Corral Nocturne
Four Dance Episodes from "Rodeo" (2001 Digital Remaster): Saturday-Night Waltz
Four Dance Episodes from "Rodeo" (2001 Digital Remaster): Hoe-Down
Facsimile (A Choreographic Essay) (2001 Digital Remaster): Opening: Alone at the Beach
Facsimile (A Choreographic Essay) (2001 Digital Remaster): The First Man enters
Facsimile (A Choreographic Essay) (2001 Digital Remaster): The Second Man enters
Facsimile (A Choreographic Essay) (2001 Digital Remaster): Quarrel
Facsimile (A Choreographic Essay) (2001 Digital Remaster): Alone again at the Beach
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster): Opening
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster): Scene at the Bar
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster): Pas de deux
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster), Three Dance Variations:: I. - Galop
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster), Three Dance Variations:: II. - Waltz
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster), Three Dance Variations:: III. - Danzon
Fancy Free (2001 Digital Remaster): Finale


YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN TO ARKIVMUSIC STREAMING.
TRY IT NOW FOR FREE!
Sign up now for two weeks of free access to the world's best classical music collection. Keep listening for only $19.95/month - thousands of classical albums for the price of one! Learn more about ArkivMusic Streaming
Already a subscriber? Sign In