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Re: Eastern European musicians and the West
Geoff, you make valid points about the need for a more nuanced view of the east/west divide than occurred (or was even possible) during the cold war. Let's not be evasive about who was mainly responsible for Kubelik's leaving Covent Garden. According to Kubelik's Wikipedia entry, "he chose to leave partly because of a campaign by Sir Thomas Beecham against the engagement of foreign artists at Covent Garden". Beecham was a great orchestra builder and conductor of his (eclectic) core repertoire, but he was no angel. I have always been mystified how his reputation survived his desertion of his native land during its years of greatest peril in the early nineteen-forties.
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