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I have just been all round the world and have formed a very poor opinion of it.

Thomas Beecham

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For the Columbia label Beecham recorded his last or only versions of many works by Delius including A Mass of Life Appalachia North Country Sketches An Arabesque Paris and Eventyr. Beecham married Betty in 1943 and they were a devoted couple until her death in 1958. During the First World War Beecham strove often without a fee to keep music alive in London Liverpool Manchester and other British cities.

After his return to Britain he founded the Royal Philharmonic in 1946 and conducted it until his death in 1961. Other composers with whose music he was frequently associated were Haydn Schubert Sibelius and the composer he revered above all others Mozart. Born to a rich industrial family Beecham began his career as a conductor in 1899.

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