Elizabeth Maconchy (1907 – 1994)

Music as Impassioned Argument

Studien zur Wertungsforschung Band 59

Elizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned ArgumentElizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned ArgumentElizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned ArgumentElizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned ArgumentElizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned ArgumentElizabeth Maconchy - Music as Impassioned Argument
Musical EditionsBook
Item no.679828
Author / ComposerElizabeth Maconchy
EditorChrista Brüstle, Danielle Sofer
Scope296 pages; 14 × 20 cm
Release year2018
Publisher / ProducerUniversal Edition
Producer No.UE 26859


Dame Elizabeth Maconchy (1907-1994) is a key 20th century composer of the British music history. As a contemporary and musician, she is on a par with Benjamin Britten and Michael Tippett. She wrote large orchestral works, chamber music for different instrumentations and several stage plays. Her 13 string quartets represent an ultramodern style of the 1930s.

In volume 59 of “Studies on musical criticism and aesthetical research“ („Studien zur Wertungsforschung”), biographical information and photo material on Maconchy are presented, compiled by their two daughters. They are supplemented by cultural-historical studies and work analyses that refer to Maconchy’s work. Furthermore, Annika Forkert discusses Maconchy in the context of Walton, Tippett and Britten, whereas Guido Heldt talks on music for solo instruments and ensemble. Later Christa Brüstle and Rhiannon Mathias deal with the string quartets while Sophia Leithold and Danielle Sofer are the first to elaborate analytically on the stage works “The Sofa” and “The Departure”.

The appendix includes texts on the music by Maconchy herself, a complete catalogue of works and a detailed bibliography. The two editors, associates at the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz, have created this volume after a conference about Maconchy.


  • Introduction
    ​Brüstle, Christa; Sofer, Danielle
  • Personal Recollections of my Mother, Elizabeth Maconchy
    ​Dunlop, Anna
  • Elizabeth Maconchy - A Life in Music
    ​LeFanu, Nicola
  • Photographies
  • The Maconchy-Williams Correspondance 1927-1977
    ​Fuller, Sophie
  • Beauty among Beasts? Maconchy, Walton, Tippett and Britten
    ​Forkert, Annika
  • Composer concertante. Elizabeth Maconchy's Music for Solo Instruments and Ensemble
    ​Heldt, Guido
  • Elizabeth Maconchy and Béla Bartók - 'Ultra-Modernity' in British Music
    ​Brüstle, Christa
  • Maconchy's Late String Quartets with particular reference to String Quartet No. 9
    ​Matthias, Rhiannon
  • Erotic Desire in Elizabeth Maconchy's Opera 'The Sofa'
    ​Leithold, Sophia
  • Death Becomes Him - Elizabeth Maconchy's One-Act Opera 'The Departure'
    ​Sofer, Danielle
  • A Composer Speaks
    ​Maconchy, Elizabeth
  • The Image of Greatness
    ​Maconchy, Elizabeth
  • Catalogue of Works
  • Bibliography
  • List of abbreviations
  • Index of persons
  • Short biographies
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