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The George Lloyd Society - Newsletter December No 2

The George Lloyd Society - Newsletter December No 2

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The George Lloyd Society   
Newsletter - December 2023

Greetings ‍  ‍ ‍

L‍yrita Nimbus Arts have now announced further details of the launch of their new George Lloyd Signature Series, which merits another Newsletter.


Other items in this issue include: 


1. Biographical: new image gallery

2. George Lloyd and Charles Causley

3. The story of the bronze portrait head

4. New streaming playlists  (no charge) 

5. A Christmas carol in the form of a table-top double canon. 

Lyrita Nimbus launch the 
George Lloyd
Signature Series

Lyrita Nimbus Arts have announced more detail of their plans to re-issue the complete George Lloyd catalogue in a new 'Signature Series.' They plan to publish new digital editions of George Lloyd's manuscript and typset scores and to present all the recordings which he conducted, in new compilations in both physical and digital formats. 

Lyrita Nimbus Arts is an adventurous new enterprise which has emerged from the Lyrita Recorded Edition Trust (who concentrated on promoting British classical music and rare recordings via the Lyrita and Cameo record labels) and The Nimbus Foundation who manage a studio and concert hall near Monmouth, UK. 


Under their guidance, the Lloyd manuscripts and typeset scores will be cleaned, new orchestral parts will be created and new editions prepared for hire and for sale under the Lyrita imprint.


The new publishing catalogue is in preparation, but meanwhile a list of works with durations, orchestration can be found HERE.  Reviews are found HERE:


The complete collection of recordings, conducted by the composer, will be reorganised into affordable sets, with new notes commissioned from Paul Conway. 


All digital platforms will have access to a unified and comprehensive offering from a single source.

Check out the Lyrita Nimbus social media and streaming sites!


‍Online Biography: New image gallery 
on the George Lloyd Society website: 

A new biographical picture gallery has been included on our website, as part of the online biography project.  Six distinct periods of the composer's life, together with a page of formal portraits, have been covered initially. Further detail will be added as the project develops.  Link here: 

Example:  from period 1930 - 1940


"Some people came night after night. 5, 6, 7 times they would come to Iernin - they just went overboard. There were others who thought that I should go back to school, that I didn’t know anything at all, and who really very actively disliked it. And it’s exactly as the same as happens now - they exaggerate to such an extent that I can’t understand it, and then other people exaggerate the other way. That is what has happened to my music right from the beginning. "  George Lloyd 1996


Mistress Lloyd's Fancy.... 

George Lloyd, Charles Causley - and Nancy

In 1956, Cornish poet Charles Causley and Cornish composer George Lloyd were commissioned by the BBC to make an opera, The Burning Boy.
The poet and composer dined and worked on the piece together at Lloyd's home at The Old Keeper's Cottage, near Sherborne in Dorset, where Nancy cooked the dinner.  Causley was clearly enamoured of Nancy's skill with the icing sugar and wrote her a poem: Mistress Lloyd's Fancy. 
Here is how it happened... Download PDF

‍Mistress Lloyd's Fancy 

Hail to bright Nancy:
  who, with sweet stiletto,

Wrote in white icing-sugar
  her libretto:

And, like Cecilia,
  in the kitchen stood,

Composing oratorios of food. 

Would,cried the stuffed composer,    rumbling poet,

We, with our genius,
   could so surely show it!

‍The bronze head by Wilfred Dudeney

Lyrita Nimbus Arts have chosen the bronze portrait of George as the lead image for their George Lloyd Signature Series. 

This is the story of how the portrait was commissioned and sculpted, transported by bicycle (while still in wet clay) from Heathrow village to Chelsea, then bombed and broken in an air raid, (the broken bits kept in a box by Nancy,) and then restored by the original sculptor 60 years later. The story is featured as a chapter in the online biography.  Download here.   

In 1935, following the success of the opera Iernin, a London barrister, Mr Albert Ganz commissioned young sculptor, Wilfred Dudeney to execute a bronze portrait head of the composer. It was Dudeney's first commission after leaving art school.The bust was first cast in plaster, and was broken by a bombing raid on London during World War II. 60 years after he created it, Wilfred Dudeney was commissioned to restore the it and cast the work in bronze. By a curious quirk of fate, the casting was also his last commission.   

New streaming playlists

‍Two new streaming playlists have been added to our website to allow sampling of Lloyd's music. (Tip: the tracks can play while you explore the wesbite.) Playlist No 1 comprises some lesser known works, starting with a most beautiful 'Invocation to the Virgin Mary', an a capella section from Lloyd's setting of 'A Litany' by John Donne.  

Playlist No 2 is a selection of slow movements fom Lloyd symphonies, and complements the YouTube playlist 'Serene and Mindful' which presents 40 minutes of tranquil music to a backdrop of landscapes from the Lake District in Cumbria, home of the George Lloyd Society.

An unusual Christmas carol...

‍Longstanding members of the George Lloyd Society may recall this item from our Newsletter of 2013 but we think it will stand repetition after 10 years.
For high-definition sheet music, tap the picture below, or download here:

Joyeux Noel 

Among George’s papers we have found a most unusual Christmas Carol, written in the form of a ‘table top double canon’ combined so that the sheet music is in the shape of a cross.


It is performed by four singers standing or sitting in a square round a table, each singer reading a line as normal,  from left to right.  The singers start at opposite ends of a line, but the result has harmonic integrity. 


Each melodic line is only seven bars long, but they are reversible. The 7 bar piece is simply repeated as often as required. 

‍Musicological note: A table canon is a retrograde and inverse canon, meant to be placed on a table in between musicians who both read the same line of music, in opposite directions.  The form is not common, though examples of two way canons can be found in the works of Bach, Mozart, Webern and other composers who turned their attention to party tricks. No other example of a four way canon is known. Lloyd's mental gymnastics in writing such a piece are matched by those required to typset the work using Sibelius software, but composer Alex Silverman managed to accomplish the feat. 


Please watch out for new Lyrita Nimbus editions in our future Newsletters, follow us on social media and forward this Newsletter to anyone who may be interested. New members can subscribe HERE.  (No Charge)


We send Season's greetings to all our members and supporters. 


Thank you,


‍William Lloyd

The George Lloyd Society

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