B1227. DENISE LASSIMONNE & HOWARD FERGUSON, Eds. Myra Hess by her Friends. New York, Vanguard, 1966. 121pp. Clough & Cuming Discography; Photos; DJ.
”Julia Myra Hess studied at the Royal Academy of Music under Tobias Matthay. Her début came in 1907 when she played Beethoven's Piano Concerto #4 with Sir Thomas Beecham conducting. She went on to tour through Britain, the Netherlands and France. Upon her American debut (New York, 24 January 1922) she became a prime favourite in the United States, not only as a soloist, but also as a fine ensemble player. She also has a surprising link to jazz, having given lessons in the '20s to Ivy Brubeck, mother of Dave Brubeck.
Hess garnered greater fame during World War II when, with all concert halls blacked out at night to avoid being targets of German bombers, she organized what would turn out to be some 1700 lunchtime concerts spanning a period of six years, starting during the London Blitz. The concerts were held at the National Gallery, in Trafalgar Square; Hess herself played in 150 of them. For this contribution to maintaining the morale of the populace of London, King George VI awarded her with the Dame Commander of the British Empire (DBE) in 1941; having previously been created a CBE in 1936.”
- Zillah Dorset Akron