Music from the Grand Hotel

“And now we take you, once again, to the Palm Court of the Grand Hotel…” 

Today on Radio Riel’s main stream, we take you on anoth­er jour­ney back in time to the dance-halls of the ear­ly  20th Cen­tu­ry, char­ac­terised by the long-run­ning BBC radio series, Grand Hotel. We’ll also be hear­ing some clas­sic big-band record­ings — and much more.

Broad­casts of light clas­si­cal music on the BBC start­ed in 1925 from The Grand Hotel in East­bourne and fea­tured, to quote the Radio Times of the era, ‘Music of the Palm Court Orches­tra’. The Lounge Hall of the Grand was used — the hotel did not actu­al­ly have a Palm Court. The pro­gram­me’s sig­na­ture tune was the “big tune” from Strauss’s Ros­es from the South.

Today, we’ll fea­ture sev­er­al mod­ern-day Palm Court Orches­tras, includ­ing the Palm Court Orches­tra of the Stock­holm Phil­har­mon­ic. Much of the music you’ll hear today is instru­men­tal, but there are some vocal num­bers; and the record­ings are a mix­ture of authen­tic 1920s-40s dance-band record­ings from the Charleston era and lat­er, and mod­ern light clas­si­cal dance tunes and oth­er pieces.

Today’s pro­gramme is pre­sent­ed by Elrik Mer­lin and pro­duced by Radio Riel in con­junc­tion with our friends at the Alexan­dri­an Free Library Con­sor­tium of Sec­ond Life. You can lis­ten to the pro­gramme in-world now at, or sim­ply click here to start your play­er, if your brows­er is con­fig­ured to do so. Lis­ten­ers in the Unit­ed States are encour­aged to tune in using this link:

For more infor­ma­tion on the Alexan­dri­an Free Library, cur­rent exhibits and the work of Con­sor­tium mem­bers in gen­er­al, please vis­it the Alexan­dri­an Free Library web­site, or one of their branch­es in-world.

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