Vincent Aspey Times Two
From the age of 12, Vincent Aspey (1909–1987) earned 5 shillings a week playing violin to accompany silent movies and this experience did wonders for his sight reading. The advent of talking movies ended this work and Vince spent time with a top class teacher in Australia.
Pictured: Vincent Aspey during a Wellington Town Hall concert in 1955 (courtesy Te Ara).
Moving back to New Zealand during the depression of the 1930s, Vince established himself as one of the country’s finest musicians and from 1936 began giving concerts in the four main centres. During the war, he led a string orchestra which gave camp concerts for soldiers in training.
Before a concert, Vincent Aspey on left.
In 1946 the Labour government formed the National Orchestra, later re-named the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and who better to lead it than Vincent Aspey. Apart from his musicianship, Vince’s humility, diplomacy, humour and charm kept him on the front desk for 20 years
In conversation with Spectrum’s Jack Perkins, Vincent Aspey’s son, Vince junior, also a fine violinist, recalls his father. Also included in ‘Vince Aspey Times Two’ are archival recordings of Vince and his music.
Vincent Aspey in retirement.
Vincent Aspey junior playing his Guarneri del Gesu copy made by China's foremost luthier.
Archival audio in this programme was supplied by Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.