Scandal and Scholarship
July 02, 2001

I.In July 1958, La Scala, an Italian periodical devoted to news of Italian opera and musical life, published a polemical article by a young Australian musician named Denis Vaughan. Having become an assistant conductor to Sir Thomas Beecham four years earlier, Vaughan had grown fascinated by the asymmetries of phrasing, the subtle gradations of color and dynamics, the non-uniform use of staccato articulation that he felt characterized Beecham's interpretations and gave the music that passed under his baton an inner life of great power and variety.