Dorothy Hesse

Audio recording about a musician who lived in Welwyn Garden City

by WGCHT/ Matija Miljanic and James Parrett

Name: female speaker

Subject: Dorothy Hesse and the Welwyn Garden City Music Club

Duration: 4:48

Interview date: c2016

A local resident talks about the charismatic music teacher Dorothy Hesse, who founded the Welwyn Garden City Music Club in 1944. Meetings took place in H. G. Wells’ house and the interviewee recalls  musicians such as Alfred Brendel and Steven Bishop spending time at her house while performing in WGC. Dorothy’s sister Stephanie was also mentioned in context of bringing the Amadeus Quartet to play in the club during the war. The speaker talks fondly about her music lessons with Dorothy and her family’s involvement with the music club.

This page was added on 02/08/2016.

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  • Most interested to find this page today (7th June 2020).
    In March 1953 I met Dorothy Hesse, because she was then tutoring the young pianist Arthur Tomson, in preparation for his recital (which I organised) on 11th April that year, in the new Hatfield Technical College. I was one of its very first students, but only for evening classes. The College has since become the University of Hertfordshire. Also interesting because I believe the WGC Music Club (or Society?) organised the memorable recital given by Wilhelm Kempff in Parkway Restaurant, WGC on 11th December 1952.
    I should be interested to have news from anyone else who remembers those early 1950s in the WGC-Hatfield area..

    By Kenneth Watkins (07/06/2020)