Author Topic: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)  (Read 21598 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

kyjo

  • Guest
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #120 on: August 18, 2013, 10:00:16 AM »
Unfortunately, I don't think much of Hanson's music. I own several of the Schwarz recordings, but found the music particularly unmemorable, but probably need to plan a revisit as it's been several years since I've listened to any of his music.

Thanks for being honest, John. Please do revisit your Hanson recordings if you have time. :)

Offline pencils

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 210
  • Location: Cheshire, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #121 on: August 18, 2013, 11:51:26 AM »
1 and 6, are particular favourites. Not such a huge fan of 7, but I didn't fancy the choral aspects much.

kyjo

  • Guest
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #122 on: August 18, 2013, 12:18:09 PM »
1 and 6, are particular favourites. Not such a huge fan of 7, but I didn't fancy the choral aspects much.

I agree, the Seventh is definitely Hanson's weakest symphony. Hanson wrote better for chorus and orchestra in works such as Lament for Beowulf and Song of Democracy.

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #123 on: August 18, 2013, 10:39:18 PM »
Not to hijack this thread, but I would love to hear some more modern performances of Thompson's symphonies. The ones on Koch just aren't sufficient enough and too bad Bernstein didn't record the rest of them. :(

OT

There is this one:

"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #124 on: August 18, 2013, 11:01:37 PM »
In addition to Kyle's suggestions here are my favourite Hanson CDs of the moment:


The above CD also features two marvellous works the Elegy for Koussevitsky and Dies Natalis.

The Organ Concerto was another fine Hanson discovery, through this forum:



Slatkin's version of Symphony No 2 is very good too:



I have not included images of CDs which are now difficult to get hold of or very expensive, but these would include Koussevitsky's recording of Symphony No 3. The Dutton recording is now only available absurdly priced (I got it for £5.00) but you can find the same version on Biddulph in a not so good transfer, but still worth having. The other great Hanson CD which comes to mind is his own Mercury recording of Symphony 3 with the Koussevitsky Elegy and Lament for Beowulf, which now seems to be available only as a download - although Hanson's recording of symphonies 1 and 2 is available on CD.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2013, 11:17:23 PM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #125 on: August 18, 2013, 11:15:36 PM »
Thanks for your reply, Jeffrey. It was difficult to choose just five favorite Hanson recordings and the discs you mention are all very fine indeed. :) Have you heard his piano works or his String Quartet? They're lovely works that show Hanson was adept at writing for media other than the orchestra. I have these excellent recordings:

   

The two string quartets by Randall Thompson with which the Hanson is suitably coupled are both very engaging, freshly lyrical pieces.
Kyle,
I have the piano music CD but can't really recall what I thought of it - so I must listen to it again. The SQ CD Hanson/Thompson looks very tempting I must say! I shall look out for it.  Many thanks for the recommendation.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline cilgwyn

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4032
  • Location: Wales
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #126 on: August 19, 2013, 07:09:01 AM »
I agree, the Seventh is definitely Hanson's weakest symphony. Hanson wrote better for chorus and orchestra in works such as Lament for Beowulf and Song of Democracy.
At last we're in total agreement,kyjo! ;D :) A wonderful composer. I love his music. In fact I don't think I've heard anything by Hanson I didn't enjoy. I even like his Seventh. The quote from No 2 is particularly moving.
Marvellous!

kyjo

  • Guest
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #127 on: August 19, 2013, 07:18:21 AM »
At last we're in total agreement,kyjo! ;D :) A wonderful composer. I love his music. In fact I don't think I've heard anything by Hanson I didn't enjoy. I even like his Seventh. The quote from No 2 is particularly moving.
Marvellous!

I'm sure Hanson isn't the only composer we both love! :D It's just that the composers I have happened to bring up recently you don't really connect with. :) Not to get off-topic, but who are some of your very favorite composers, cilgwyn?

kyjo

  • Guest
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #128 on: August 19, 2013, 07:29:30 AM »
In addition to Kyle's suggestions here are my favourite Hanson CDs of the moment:


The above CD also features two marvellous works the Elegy for Koussevitsky and Dies Natalis.

The Organ Concerto was another fine Hanson discovery, through this forum:



Slatkin's version of Symphony No 2 is very good too:



I have not included images of CDs which are now difficult to get hold of or very expensive, but these would include Koussevitsky's recording of Symphony No 3. The Dutton recording is now only available absurdly priced (I got it for £5.00) but you can find the same version on Biddulph in a not so good transfer, but still worth having. The other great Hanson CD which comes to mind is his own Mercury recording of Symphony 3 with the Koussevitsky Elegy and Lament for Beowulf, which now seems to be available only as a download - although Hanson's recording of symphonies 1 and 2 is available on CD.

The Organ Concerto is a very fine piece indeed. The recording on the Naxos CD is of the reduced version with strings and harp accompaniment, but, apparently, there is a version with full orchestra as well that I believe includes more material than the reduced version. The other pieces that are on the disc with the Organ Concerto are beautifully atmospheric little works that showcase Hanson's more delicate side.

The Koussevitsky recording of Symphony no. 3 is a great one no doubt, but, sadly, the audio quality gets in the way of my enjoyment of it somewhat. So I prefer the Schwarz recording simply (but not solely) because of the superior audio quality. :)

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #129 on: August 19, 2013, 09:58:49 AM »
The Organ Concerto is a very fine piece indeed. The recording on the Naxos CD is of the reduced version with strings and harp accompaniment, but, apparently, there is a version with full orchestra as well that I believe includes more material than the reduced version. The other pieces that are on the disc with the Organ Concerto are beautifully atmospheric little works that showcase Hanson's more delicate side.

The Koussevitsky recording of Symphony no. 3 is a great one no doubt, but, sadly, the audio quality gets in the way of my enjoyment of it somewhat. So I prefer the Schwarz recording simply (but not solely) because of the superior audio quality. :)

Have you heard the Dutton issue of the Koussevitsky Kyle? They do wonders with the recording.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

kyjo

  • Guest
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #130 on: August 19, 2013, 10:09:56 AM »
Have you heard the Dutton issue of the Koussevitsky Kyle? They do wonders with the recording.
No, I have only heard the issue on Mercury Living Presence and wasn't aware of the one on Dutton; thanks for pointing it out to me. :) It's this one, right?



Are your familiar with this disc, Jeffrey? If so, what are your impressions of it? I've had my eye on it for a future purchase:


Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #131 on: August 20, 2013, 11:39:21 AM »
No, I have only heard the issue on Mercury Living Presence and wasn't aware of the one on Dutton; thanks for pointing it out to me. :) It's this one, right?



Are your familiar with this disc, Jeffrey? If so, what are your impressions of it? I've had my eye on it for a future purchase:



Yes, that's the Dutton Koussevitsky CD. Sadly it is often ridiculously priced now but may come round again. The fact remains that it is THE outstanding transfer of that magnificent performance of Hanson's Third Symphony and the Copland works are outstanding in all respects. I have the Arte Nova disc of symphonies 2 and 4 and rather like it, although I read an indifferent review of it. It is dirt cheap and worth having. There are some interesting things on that label including a really fine version of Walton's First Symphony from (surprisingly) the Orchestra of Grand Canary, conducted by Adrian Leaper.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Rons_talking

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 318
  • Location: Upper British Colu
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #132 on: January 20, 2015, 06:47:24 PM »
One my first vinyl discs of American music not by Copland was a Mercury recording of Hanson's Fourth (my favorite) and Piston's Third, which is also great. I wore the thing out and still frequently listen to Hanson's 4th. I haven't heard much of his non-symphony music.

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #133 on: January 21, 2015, 06:42:10 AM »
One my first vinyl discs of American music not by Copland was a Mercury recording of Hanson's Fourth (my favorite) and Piston's Third, which is also great. I wore the thing out and still frequently listen to Hanson's 4th. I haven't heard much of his non-symphony music.

I had that LP too and loved it. For some reason Mercury did not issue it on CD. Coincidentally I was listening to Hanson's Sixth Symphony in the car today - it is a fine work with a slow movement I find very touching. It is made up of six movements but only lasts about twenty minutes. I was listening to the Delos recording. Try the moving 'Elegy to Koussevitsky' and the fine 'Dies Natalis' for the non-symphonic work as well as 'Lament for Beowolf' and the Organ and Piano concertos. The opening movement of the Piano Concerto is very touching. There are numerous recordings.

"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline snyprrr

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 11034
  • SQs, PQs, PQTs, PTs, VSs, Berlioz-Xenakis/Aperghis
  • Currently Listening to:
    Things that are crisp and spritely vs. things that are thick and creamy
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #134 on: January 21, 2015, 09:41:03 AM »
I declare him My Most Boring Composer. :(

For having a bunch of title like 'Elegy', 'Requiem', 'Sacra', and all that, he is quite free of gut wrenching emotional impact a la Shosty. HH could have turned me off of CM altogether, i IMagine... "your grandfather's classical music"... sorry guys!! 0:)
Rat Poison is 99% Good Food, so Follow the Money

Haydn-Sikh

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3099
  • Location: Chicagoland
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #135 on: January 21, 2015, 10:18:36 AM »
I declare him My Most Boring Composer. :(

I gotta say, I've enjoyed spinning the Mercury LP of his 1st and 3rd symphonies, conducted by him. And the 2nd, conducted by Slatkin. (And the 6th.) HH is the American Kurt Atterberg - sometimes I'm in the mood for that sort of thing.
formerly VELIMIR (before that, Spitvalve)

"Who knows not strict counterpoint, lives and dies an ignoramus" - CPE Bach

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48094
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #136 on: January 21, 2015, 10:20:24 AM »
I declare him My Most Boring Composer. :(

For having a bunch of title like 'Elegy', 'Requiem', 'Sacra', and all that, he is quite free of gut wrenching emotional impact a la Shosty.

See, you're all about the frisson.  I get that.  But music needn't wrench your gut to be great.  (I should even argue that it does Shostakovich a disservice if we force even his work onto that Procrustean divan.)

At Jeffrey's suggestion, I investigated the Elegy, and I find it simply lovely.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline vandermolen

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 10296
  • Location: Rotherfield, Sussex, UK
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #137 on: January 21, 2015, 12:17:00 PM »
See, you're all about the frisson.  I get that.  But music needn't wrench your gut to be great.  (I should even argue that it does Shostakovich a disservice if we force even his work onto that Procrustean divan.)

At Jeffrey's suggestion, I investigated the Elegy, and I find it simply lovely.

Glad you liked it Karl. I like Shostakovich too but like ATOA I sometimes prefer to to listen to Hanson. It has an underlying warmth and humanity which I find appealing.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 48094
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, Frescobaldi, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Haydn, Henning
Re: Howard Hanson (1896-1981)
« Reply #138 on: July 20, 2015, 12:41:47 AM »
Glad you liked it Karl. I like Shostakovich too but like ATOA I sometimes prefer to to listen to Hanson. It has an underlying warmth and humanity which I find appealing.

The curious thing is:  first, as a result of explorations inspired by this thread, I have recordings (the Schwarz/Seattle, which I know not everyone here cares for, but I think them fine) of the Fourth through Seventh symphonies.

And now, thanks to having fetched in the Mercury Living Presence 2 box, I have the composer's own recordings in Rochester of the First through Third.  Which is to say, I never did imagine I should at any time own a complete set of the Hanson symphonies.  Soon, I shall give those first three an attentive listen.


Oh!  I did listen to the Lament for Beowulf last week.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2015, 02:26:47 AM by karlhenning »
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Scion7

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2017
  • "A vér az élet."
  • Location: Borgó Pass
Re: Howard Hanson [1896-1981]
« Reply #139 on: August 29, 2016, 02:32:21 AM »
Contains a quite nice version of Dies natalis II, for Band  (1972)

Your barricades lie broken ... your enemies lord.