British composer Ethel Smyth’s opera The Wreckers premiered in Leipzig at the Neues Theatre on 11 November 1906. This is the best known of Smyth’s six operas, with a libretto by Henry Brewster and Smyth herself.
Since the opera was due to be staged in Leipzig, Smyth was unable to attend the rehearsals. She arrived the day before the premiere, and was astonished to learn that large parts of the opera had been cut.
“Unacceptable!” thundered Smyth. “It is the only solution,” replied the conductor, since they had not rehearsed the omitted sections. The maestro was clear:
The piece would be performed with cuts, or not at all. And thus it was to be. The Leipzig audience was thrilled, but Smyth herself was unimpressed. This was not how her opera was supposed to be performed! At night, while everyone else slept off the excitement of the premiere, she snuck into the orchestra pit. There, she stole all the orchestral notes and the conductor’s score. When the people of Leipzig woke the next morning, Smyth and The Wreckers had long since boarded a train to Prague. The Leipzig scandal, as it came to be known, meant that there were no more performances of The Wreckers at the Neues Theater that year.
About the 2021 Swedish Wind Ensemble recording project and collaboration between arranger the Swedish Wind Ensemble, Anders Högstedt and Edition Skellton:
“The Swedish Wind Ensemble recorded these works in the same year that Sweden marked the centenary of women’s voting rights. The recording took place at the Musikaliska concert hall in the heart of Stockholm. The Royal Swedish Academy of Music has convened here for a number of musical and historical events over the years, including the presentation of the first Nobel Prize in 1901. The venue also
saw the first Swedish performance of Helena Munktell’s work Breaking Waves, during the Academy’s formal gathering. She, Elfrida Andrée and Clara Schumann were all members of the Academy. Today, Musikaliska is the home of the Swedish Wind Ensemble, and an important arena for acoustic music.
All the works were specially arranged for the Swedish Wind Ensemble by it’s permanent arranger, Anders Högstedt. The pieces were originally written for a symphony orchestra or piano. But is it appropriate to record music adapted for an ensemble, rather than performing it in its original format? The Swedish Wind Ensemble certainly believes so, with its tradition of bringing music closer to the
people. Today, the Swedish Wind Ensemble continues the tradition of bringing live music closer to the people, and in the anniversary year of universal suffrage it felt natural to showcase compositions by both Swedish and international women. Ever since its ‘Skip the Full Beard’ initiative in 2010, the orchestra has developed, arranged and performed a number of works written by women.
With this recording, we want to share some of our work over the years. In this way, we hope that wind ensembles will be able to perform the repertoire we have arranged, thereby giving even more audiences the opportunity to enjoy this music.”
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Printed score: 300 sek (B4 format, 28 pages. Coil bound, frosted plastic front, hardback)
Score in PDF: 210 sek (B4 format, 28 pages)
Printed parts: à 50 kr (B4 format. 3-4 pages, Munken paper)
Parts in PDF: à 35 kr (B4-format. 3-4 pages.)
In the printed material, you get 27 parts: 27 x 50 sek = 1.350 sek
Buying the material in pdf, you get 27 parts : 27 x 35 sek = 945 sek
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