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Classicsonline Home » Artists » » Pritchard, John

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John Pritchard (1921 - 1989)


John Pritchard’s father was a professional violinist who gave him his first music lessons, for the violin. He went on to study the piano, and was a pupil at the Monoux Grammar School in Walthamstow, where he was active in the school orchestra as a violinist and violist and, more generally, as an accompanist. He also played in many amateur orchestras and was soon undertaking professional engagements, such as accompanying the tenor Heddle Nash; he also visited Italy to study opera. After a short period of military service, stationed in Derby, Pritchard conducted the semi-professional Derby String Orchestra from 1943 to 1945 as well as choral and orchestral concerts throughout the Midlands. Having been recommended to Glyndebourne as a répétiteur by the opera singer Roy Henderson, he joined the company in 1947 in time for its first performances at the Edinburgh Festival as well as its season in Sussex. He returned for the 1948 season and in 1949 was promoted to chorusmaster and assistant to Fritz Busch, who had a major influence upon his development as a musician and conductor. Between 1950 and 1952 Pritchard worked extensively with the Jacques Orchestra; but following Busch’s collapse in the middle of a performance of Don Giovanni in 1951 he was summoned from the Sussex beaches to replace him, which he did with distinction. Pritchard subsequently conducted at Glyndebourne for every season until he resigned in 1978, having been appointed music counsellor in 1963 and musical director in 1969. Many of the productions which he conducted at

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Béla Bartók - Kossuth



 

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