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Celebrating Mantovani's 100th Birthday

MANTOVANI

Mantovani was one of the most successful light orchestra leaders in the music business. Between 1951 and 1975 he released numerous best selling albums and was one of the most successful recording artists in the history of popular music. He was also a first class violinist, pianist, musical director, conductor and arranger.

Annunzio Paolo Mantovani was born in Venice, Italy, on 15 November 1905. His father was at one time principal violinist at La Scala, Milan, under the baton of Arturo Toscanini. Moving with his family to England at an early age, Mantovani eventually studied at Trinity College of Music in London before playing with his father in a variety of orchestras. In 1927 before he took over the salon orchestra at the prestigious Hotel Metropole in London's West End. By the outbreak of the Second World War, he was a popular broadcaster and fronted a successful touring orchestra.

During and after the war he became musical director for Noel Coward and others. With arranger Ronnie Binge, he perfected  "cascading" or "delayed" string sound which became one of his expanded orchestra's trademarks. It was first heard to full effect in his world famous recording of "Charmaine", recorded in March 1951. Although Binge left in 1952, Mantovani remained at the top of the tree for many years with the help of his arrangers Cecil Milner and Roland Shaw, touring America and Canada extensively between 1954 and 1969. He also gave many concerts in the UK, Germany, South Africa, the Netherlands and Denmark.

Mantovani died on March 1980, but his enduring popularity ensures recognition as the undisputed king of light orchestral music.

The television series, with John Conte was produced in 1958 and 1959 at Associated British Studios near London. The executive director was Duke Goldstone (George Pal Puppetoons); the series producer was Harry Alan Towers (Hammer horror films). 

Program includes: Belle of the Ball, It Happened In Old Monterey, Dancing With Tears in My Eyes, Acceleration Waltz, Emperor's Waltz, Wonderful Copenhagen, Teddy Bears Picnic, I Love Paris, Holiday For Strings, Perpetuum Mobile, Yellow Bird, Oh Mama Mama,

The Road To Ballingarry, 'S Wonderful and Skyscraper Fantasy and many more.

86 minutes b/w







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Customer Comments


Mantovani - This was a very enjoyable viewing-good picture quality and sound - I do recall this series when launched by the BBC.