Malcolm Arnold

In case (like me) you’d not seen it in the news, there is currently a worry that many of composer Malcolm Arnold’s papers will be destroyed following a court ruling. I had not realised that Arnold’s mental and health problems meant that he was made a ward of court as early as 1979, only ten years after working with Jon Lord on the fabulous Deep Purple Concerto. I know he was in a fragile state when EMI invited him to attend the preview of the remastered SACD Concerto at Abbey Road, though he appeared to appreciate all the fuss being made of him. It is the material from 1979 on which are now as risk and so could be lost to future biographers.
A petition has been set up to try and find a way to save the material. There are not too far short of the 5,000 signatures needed to help put pressure on the people responsible.
This great pic of Arnold at the BBC above dates from not long before the Concerto. Thanks to Peter Judd for alerting me to the story.

UPDATE : thanks to this petition the material will now be lodged at the National Archives, but not available to biographers until the legal situation is sorted out.

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