From the Library: Entente Cordiale

in Daily Programme

by Elrik Merlin on Wednesday, 11 February, 2009

To celebrate the launch of Radio Riel New Toulouse, we are pleased to present for you today on our Main Stream a selection of classical music from Britain and France in our series From the Library.

In fact the emphasis is somewhat more on the French. However, we will be hearing from a number of British composers such as Elgar, Vaughan Williams and of course Frederic Delius, who, while born in England, spent the latter part of his life across the Channel.

From the French side we will be featuring Poulenc, Fauré, Chopin (who was Polish born but became a French citizen) Debussy, Ravel and Berlioz, with performances both traditional and not so.

We also have a selection of cross-channel pieces in a somewhat lighter vein.

Today, we think of the Entente Cordiale (“Cordial Understanding”) as simply some kind of vague “special relationship” between Britain and France, but the term originally commemorated the recognition of common interests between Britain and France in the mid-1840s and, in particular, King Louis-Philippe’s efforts to build political bridges between France and other European powers who had largely ostracised the French.

A meeting between the French and English sovereigns was organised at the Château d’Eu in September 1843, with Louis-Philippe visiting Queen Victoria a year later in Windsor Castle. A third and last meeting was held in Eu in 1845. The picture above is one of a series by Provost-Dumarchais commemorating the event.

However the usual meaning of the term refers to the second Entente — a series of Anglo-French agreements signed on 8 April 1904 and resulting in the end of recurring conflict between the two and the beginning of the period of peaceful co-existence that has lasted to the present day.

From The Library is presented by Radio Riel in conjunction with the Caledon Library in Second Life, and today’s programme was produced by Elrik Merlin. For more information on the Caledon Library, current exhibits and the work of Second Life reference libraries in general, please visit the Caledon Library Web site, or one of their locations in-world.

You can listen to the program in-world now at, or simply visit any Caledon Library branch in-world and press Play on your embedded music player.

To listen off-world now, with a regular music player such as iTunes or WinAmp, click the following link or paste into the player.


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Elrik Merlin February 11, 2009 at 09:12

A listener asks, "What was the music played before the 'Masterpiece Theater' piece this morning at about 12:15 AM SL?"

The piece in question was Perpetuum Mobile, written by Michael Roberts, a member of the staff at UK TV company ABC Weekend Television and used over the tuning signal (remember them?) prior to the station's opening theme tune on ABC and its successor Thames for 30 years from the late 1950s.

I use the piece in exactly the same way: at the start of my daily programme I play a "startup" (extended music and station identification) and I precede it with Perpetuum Mobile as a transition from the previous show, except before the start of the 'Light Programme' light music show, where I play interval chimes and a startup featuring an arrangement of Oranges and Lemons, both original BBC Light Programme recordings.

Perpetuum Mobile is performed by the Prague Symphony Orchestra conducted by Gavin Sutherland. It is not currently available on disc.


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