Dr Carl Frederick Dolmetsch CBE died on 11 July 1997 at the age of 85.
The youngest son of Arnold Dolmetsch, Carl was an outstanding figure in the history of the revival of the recorder in the 20th century, with a performing career, as a soloist and with the Dolmetsch Recorder Consort, that lasted about 75 years. For some 60 of those years his accompanist was Joseph Saxby, who died on 23 June 1997 at the age of 87.
Carl was a craftsman of the recorder in the family workshops and directed the Haslemere Festival from 1947 to 1996. He published and lectured extensively, being responsible for many editions of ancient recorder music and also for commissioning new works by contemporary composers. He founded and directed the Dolmetch International Summer School, originally for recorder and now including viols, keyboards and other instruments.
In 1937 Carl, together with Edgar Hunt, founded the Society of Recorder Players and remained an active member until a short time before his death. Keeping to the missionary spirit of the founding years, Carl always willingly gave his time free of charge when he conducted, lectured or performed for the Society. His sessions were memorable and inspiring, always well spiced with anecdotes and opinions. The currently thriving Society is just one of his many legacies. We are indebted to our co-Founder for his part in our life and his contribution to music in the 20th century.
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