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Ian Holtham

Ian Holtham is an Australian pianist and academic.

Ian Holtham reviews 'W. A. Mozart' by Hermann Abert, translated by Stewart Spencer and edited by Cliff Eisen

September 2008, no. 304 01 September 2008
It seems astonishing that one of the most important studies ever undertaken on Mozart should have taken almost eighty-five years to reach the English language. Hermann Abert’s monumental, and indeed famous, work was first published in 1924 and was originally intended as an updated edition to that other monumental work of Mozart scholarship undertaken by Otto Jahn, published in four volumes betwe ... (read more)

Ian Holtham reviews 'Peggy Glanville-Hicks: A transposed life' by James Murdoch

April 2003, no. 250 18 October 2022
Peggy Glanville-Hicks ranks as one of the few Australian composers whose international training and reputation mean that she remains vastly more appreciated outside Australia than within the shores of her native land. A student of Vaughan Williams and Nadia Boulanger, a close friend of the Menuhins, Carlos Surinach, and a host of other major figures, she was a genuine pioneer in the realms of ethn ... (read more)

Ian Holtham reviews 'A New Melba? The tragedy of Amy Castles' by Jeff Brownrigg

May 2007, no. 291 26 August 2022
The roll-call of Australian female singers of the past resounds like a comforting resurrection of anachronisms: Ada Crosley, Florence Austral, Gertrude Johnson and the epitome of stardom, Melba. The name Amy Castles represents another thing, as Jeff Brownrigg’s recent addition to the cultural history of early Australian songbirds attests. Born into a Catholic and unmusical background in Bendigo ... (read more)

Ian Holtham reviews 'Eileen Joyce: A portrait' by Richard Davis

June 2001, no. 231 01 June 2001
In my student days in Europe, I often heard the name Eileen Joyce bandied about as a figure of respect, eccentricity and past pianistic accomplishment. Geoffrey Parsons, one of my enduring musical mentors, regularly spoke of her; it came as no surprise to read in Richard Davis’s recent biography that Parsons collaborated in Joyce’s last major public appearance, at a fund-raising concert at Cov ... (read more)

Ian Holtham reviews 'Undue Noise' by Andrew Ford

May 2002, no. 241 01 May 2002
In his opening sentence, Andrew Ford explains that, ‘The seventy-something pieces in this volume were written over fifteen years for a range of publications and occasions’. Indeed, in the sixty-eight titles that constitute Undue Noise, forty-four of which began life in the ABC organ 24 Hours, Ford confronts us as critical theorist, copious reviewer of music, text and film, diarist, sleeve note ... (read more)