London Office lOa Soho Square
THE GRAMOPHONE Incorporating VOX, THE RADIO CRITIC and BROADCAST REVIEW
COMPTON MACKENZIE and CHRISTOPHER STONE
Telephone Gerrard 2136, 2137
Tel.crams Parmaxto, Rath, London
COMPETITIONS are surprising things. I expected to get some useful answers to the letter of the young lady who wrote for advice how to spend ten pounds on records to the best advantage, but I never expected to receive such a flood of excellent letters. Never has it been so difficult to nominate the winner and never have I felt so much like the Dodo in Alice in Wonderland, which, when asked by the competitors in the Caucusrace who had won, replied after a great deal of thought and sitting for a long time with one finger pressed upon its forehead, " Everybody has won, and all must have prizes."
I was reduced to the meanest expedients in order to disqualify competitors for technical breaches in failing to answer the whole of Miss South America's questions, but I have salved my conscience by deciding to publish at intervals some of the letters of the unsuccessful competitors to whom in due course we will award consolation prizes.
The final award goes to the Rev. R.]. Mockridge, AU Saints' Vicarage, Bishop's Stortford, for his really splendid piece of constructive advice, which we print not merely for the benefit of Miss South America, but for the benefit of all our readers who must be thinking at this season of giving or getting presents of gramophone records. I have decided to print in the January number the letter of the runner-up, Mr. Alan W. Eyre, Beechwood, Latchford Without, Warrington, to whom we will send a consolation of any two records he asks for.
Many competitors reminded me of delightful records I had forgotten, and I am sure that when we prin t a further selection from this advice readers will be as grateful as I was. I was surprised to find what a number were willing to consider a portable as good as a table model, but I cannot agree with them, and I strongly su-pport all those who urged Miss South America, even if i t meant sacrificing a few records at first, to get herself a good instrument. There were several enthusiastic supporters of the Cascade, and of course of the E.M.G.
and Mr. Ginn's Expert, and in pointing out that these makes had made a speciality of gramophones for overseas the perfection of their packing was extolled. There was a solid body of support for the pick-up, and as you see I have actually awarded the prize to one of its champions, though I do not agree with him in recommending a pick-up for Brazil. Most of the competitors failed to find a record of the British Grenadiers, but one or two of them spotted i t among the Regimental Marches of the Guards published by Columbia. I must mention, too, that several competitors particularly begged our young lady to secure a record of Ollr Village Cancert, published by H.M.V., and that plea I cordially endorse. 1 must not take any more space up with this competition beyond thanking all the entrants who went to such an immense amount of trouble to make this one of the most successful competitions we have had. I was particularly glad to notice how many readers had entered a GRAMOPHONE competition for the first time with this one. It has brought me into tou : h with a number of readers I had not been able to feel I knew personally before. One feature was the extraordinarily few entries from Scotland or Ireland, or women, and the extremely high portion from Lancashire. And now after this successful competition which I feel was something in the nature of a happy accident, I am going to ask our readers to give me some ideas, and the usual album will be offered to the reader at home or abroad who sends me in the best suggestion for a competition before February I5th, I937 . None of us ,vants to be bothering about competitions during December and January, and by extending the date this allows overseas competitors to try their strength with the readers at home in a joint contest. Entries should be sent to me at Suidheachan, Isle of Barra, and marked " Ideas" in the top left-hand corner of the envelope. Send them in as soon as you like, but they will remain in cold storage tiB St. Valentine's Day.
I have not forgotten Mr. N. D. Snaith's capital suggestion about" Pet Dis~ikes" in great works, I am going to count that as an entry in this competition for the best suggestion.