GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Composer Discussion => Topic started by: Dundonnell on August 20, 2007, 01:51:55 PM

Title: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on August 20, 2007, 01:51:55 PM
One of the wonderful aspects of a forum like this is that posts by enthusiasts reminds one of music not listened to for some time. Having read references in posts by Christo, vandermolen, btpaul674 and Bonehelm to the symphonies of the Portugese composer Joly Braga Santos(1924-88) I have revisited these works in the Marco Polo series conducted by Alvaro Cassuto. I had remembered them as fabulous melodic masterpieces but have been totally bowled over again by just how good these symphonies actually are!

Anyone who is attuned to the music of Vaughan Williams, Moeran, the Walton of the 1st symphony, George Lloyd, Sibelius to cite some comparators ought to find these works just up their street! There is a bold, melodic modal sweep to Braga Santos's first four symphonies which is quite overwhelming. Admittedly Nos. 5 and 6 are a bit harder going but still fine works-albeit in a somewhat different vein of greater chromaticism. Considereing that Braga Santos wrote his first four symphonies while in his twenties these are amazing achievements. His slow movements are breathtakingly beautiful(I am listening to that of his second symphony as I type!) as others on this site have remarked.

I don't know if the Marco Polo CDs are still readily available but if they are I cannot recommend them enough!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: btpaul674 on August 20, 2007, 05:17:19 PM
 :D Amazing indeed.

The second and third symphonies always blow me away. Even Vaughan Williams' slow movements can't compare to the passionate second movement of the second symphony!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: val on August 21, 2007, 12:12:03 AM
The 4th Symphony is perhaps is most famous work. There is a splendid version conducted by Silva Pereira in the old PORTUGALSOM.

I saw the world first performance of the 6th and was not very enthusiamed. As far as I remember, it was also conducted by Silva Pereira.

Braga Santos also wrotte an opera "To live or to die". I know the work only from the radio, but it doesn't seem very inspired.

For those who are interested in Portuguese composers of the XX century I must say that Luis de Freitas Branco(brother of the famous conductor and friend of Ravel) and Lopes Graça are great musicians, in my opinion very superior to Braga Santos. At least that was also the opinion of Braga Santos himself.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on August 21, 2007, 03:57:09 AM
. . . in my opinion very superior to Braga Santos. At least that was also the opinion of Braga Santos himself.

Perhaps Braga Santos was becomingly modest?

Seriously, I am curious to hear these other composers, as well as to hear more Braga Santos.  So far I've only got two Braga Santos discs, and I must hear more! More!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: val on August 22, 2007, 12:30:27 AM
Quote
karlhenning

Perhaps Braga Santos was becomingly modest?

He was a very modest person. But he always had a deep admiration for Freitas Branco that helped him in the begining of his career.

Quote
Seriously, I am curious to hear these other composers, as well as to hear more Braga Santos.  So far I've only got two Braga Santos discs, and I must hear more! More!

Thy the Quartet and the cello Sonata of Freitas Branco by the Takacs Quartet and Perenyi and Jando, his first Symphony by Silva Pereira and, regarding Lopes Graça his "Tragic History of the Sea"conducted by Gyula Nemeth with the baryon Oliveira Lopes.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 27, 2007, 10:56:05 PM
I have all the Marco Polo recordings and love symphonies 1-4. I also have the Portugalsom version of No 5 and would be very interested in hearing the Portugalsom versions of the earlier symphonies (I gather they add a chorus at the end of No 4). The problem is that Portugalsom seem to have disappeared!

Braga Santos is one of my favourite composers and I hope that the Marco Polo CDs eventually get released on Naxos in order to give them wider exposure.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 28, 2007, 06:08:16 AM
Hello, vandermolen! I met up with Christo a few weeks ago (thanks to this forum we renewed our acquaintance!) and he said that Braga Santos is great and, IIRC, that you recommended Braga Santos to him... Since then I listened to some clips, and yes - it's my cup of tea alright! (Christo also played me Tubin's Sixth, which was another ear-opener.)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 28, 2007, 07:00:42 AM
Hello, vandermolen! I met up with Christo a few weeks ago (thanks to this forum we renewed our acquaintance!) and he said that Braga Santos is great and, IIRC, that you recommended Braga Santos to him... Since then I listened to some clips, and yes - it's my cup of tea alright! (Christo also played me Tubin's Sixth, which was another ear-opener.)

Hello Jezetha,

That's very nice to know. Yes, Tubin ranks very high with me too. All his symphonies are very fine, my especial favourites being nos 1,2 and 4. Best wishes to Christo if you see him again.

Jeffrey
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 01:09:44 AM
I just read a very good review of a new CD (Musicweb), containing a symphony by Freitas Branco, the teacher of Braga Santos. The Violin Concerto, with which it is coupled is described as "very moving". I have ordered the CD and greatly look forward to hearing it. Am listening to BS Symphony 4 at the moment, a wonderfully inspiriting score.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fernandes-J-Violin-Concerto-Symphony/dp/B000ZOTD4A/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1211018782&sr=1-3
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 04:23:17 AM
I just read a very good review of a new CD (Musicweb), containing a symphony by Freitas Branco, the teacher of Braga Santos. The Violin Concerto, with which it is coupled is described as "very moving". I have ordered the CD and greatly look forward to hearing it. Am listening to BS Symphony 4 at the moment, a wonderfully inspiriting score.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fernandes-J-Violin-Concerto-Symphony/dp/B000ZOTD4A/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1211018782&sr=1-3

The Naxos website under 'News' reported last September  that the company is planning to record all the 5 Freitas Branco symphonies on four discs! No. 1 was recorded in Dublin by the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland under Alvaro Cassuto-the conductor of the Braga Santos series.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 17, 2008, 04:39:54 AM
I just listened to my first Braga Santos ever - the Fourth symphony (Cassuto/Marco Polo). The work sounds incredibly familiar (Respighi, RVW, Moeran, Bax, Sibelius), and still he is distinctive. Wonderful music!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 04:53:30 AM
The Naxos website under 'News' reported last September ago that the company is planning to record all the 5 Freitas Branco symphonies on four discs! No. 1 was recorded in Dublin by the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland under Alvaro Cassuto-the conductor of the Braga Santos series.

Great news Colin. Thank you.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 04:55:51 AM
I just listened to my first Braga Santos ever - the Fourth symphony (Cassuto/Marco Polo). The work sounds incredibly familiar (Respighi, RVW, Moeran, Bax, Sibelius), and still he is distinctive. Wonderful music!

Yes, it's great Johan and you are right about those familiar influences. Do you know symphonies 1-3? All are great. Probably No 3 is my favourite...wonderful life-affirming last movement.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 17, 2008, 05:05:06 AM
Yes, it's great Johan and you are right about those familiar influences. Do you know symphonies 1-3? All are great. Probably No 3 is my favourite...wonderful life-affirming last movement.

I have to thank Christo for 'enlightening me' on Braga Santos. I'll certainly go onlistening to the other early symphonies. Number 3 will be my next on the list.

Btw - I am listening to Langgaard, his ravishing movement for string orchestra from Symphony No. 14, 'Ignored Stars' ('Upaaagtede Stjerner') Do you know it? If not, I'll upload it - its utter beauty cries out for world-wide distribution!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 05:11:35 AM
Yes, it's great Johan and you are right about those familiar influences. Do you know symphonies 1-3? All are great. Probably No 3 is my favourite...wonderful life-affirming last movement.

If we recall that Braga Santos wrote his first four symphonies between 1947 and 1950 when he was aged 23-26 from where can be possibly have absorbed these influences? I cannot imagine that he could possibly have heard any VW, Bax or Moeran! Respighi, Sibelius? The influence of his teacher Freitas Branco? That is possible but begs so many other questions!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 17, 2008, 05:16:32 AM
If we recall that Braga Santos wrote his first four symphonies between 1947 and 1950 when he was aged 23-26 from where can be possibly have absorbed these influences? I cannot imagine that he could possibly have heard any VW, Bax or Moeran! Respighi, Sibelius? The influence of his teacher Freitas Branco? That is possible but begs so many other questions!

When I said the music sounded like those composers I mentioned, Colin, I didn't suggest he had actually heard them... Braga Santos belongs to this wonderful 'band of brothers', miraculously, that's all. When you hear the third movement it sounds for all the world like Moeran. How this could be? The enigma of creativity!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 05:21:47 AM
I have to thank Christo for 'enlightening me' on Braga Santos. I'll certainly go onlistening to the other early symphonies. Number 3 will be my next on the list.

Btw - I am listening to Langgaard, his ravishing movement for string orchestra from Symphony No. 14, 'Ignored Stars' ('Upaaagtede Stjerner') Do you know it? If not, I'll upload it - its utter beauty cries out for world-wide distribution!

Thanks v much for the offer but I do find that I have it, although I don't really know it (I shall play it later today). It is on danacord; a great double album with symphonies 4,6, 10 (all great) and "Music of the Spheres"

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 05:27:13 AM
When I said the music sounded like those composers I mentioned, Colin, I didn't suggest he had actually heard them... Braga Santos belongs to this wonderful 'band of brothers', miraculously, that's all. When you hear the third movement it sounds for all the world like Moeran. How this could be? The enigma of creativity!

Oh no, I wasn't trying to imply that you thought he had! :) I totally agree that his music reminds one of these composers. I suppose that it depends what one understands by the word 'influences'!  'The enigma of creativity'-what a nice way of putting it!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 17, 2008, 05:28:55 AM
Thanks v much for the offer but I do find that I have it, although I don't really know it (I shall play it later today). It is on danacord; a great double album with symphonies 4,6, 10 (all great) and "Music of the Spheres"

Okay.

BUT - that performance of Langgaard's Tenth is much too sluggish, however much I admire Ole Schmidt. If you don't have any other performance, I could upload the Stupel (Danacord) for you (when I have time to rip the CD)...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 05:55:16 AM
Okay.

BUT - that performance of Langgaard's Tenth is much too sluggish, however much I admire Ole Schmidt. If you don't have any other performance, I could upload the Stupel (Danacord) for you (when I have time to rip the CD)...

Thanks Johan,

That would be great.

Jeffrey
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 17, 2008, 06:06:19 AM
The praise on this thread has rekindled my interest in Braga Santos and suggests it's time to move him from the back burner to the front.  Where would y'all suggest starting?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 06:12:47 AM
The praise on this thread has rekindled my interest in Braga Santos and suggests it's time to move him from the back burner to the front.  Where would y'all suggest starting?

Any one of the first three symphonies at least would give you a good impression of the early idiom. I am-again-listening as I write to the second movement of No.2 which I just find so heart-breakingly beautiful that words fail me!! Oh some cynics would say it is "corny, film music" but sucks to them!!!!!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2008, 06:23:27 AM
Any one of the first three symphonies at least would give you a good impression of the early idiom. I am-again-listening as I write to the second movement of No.2 which I just find so heart-breakingly beautiful that words fail me!! Oh some cynics would say it is "corny, film music" but sucks to them!!!!!

Totally agree! Symphony No 4 would be a good starting point too I think. Its coupling on Marco Polo, the Symphonic Variations are  alsoexcellent.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 17, 2008, 06:26:52 AM
After all this, I'm going to download 2 and 3 this evening.

Hm, my emusic subscription is no match for my musical appetite...  :'( :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 06:34:21 AM
For such a young composer-as I said, aged 23-26-and from a country which had been, to an extent, isolated during the war and had no great orchestral tradition Braga Santos' s early symphonies are quite astonishing achievements!!!!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 17, 2008, 06:39:19 AM
After all this, I'm going to download 2 and 3 this evening.

Hm, my emusic subscription is no match for my musical appetite...  :'( :)

Report back, Johan! I would be particularly interested in what you think of No.2, obviously :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 17, 2008, 01:41:05 PM
Thanks for the suggestions, guys.  I listened to some tracks of Cassuto's recordings on the Naxos site--seem desirable enough to pop a couple into the cart for my next shopping spree.  Howard Shore popped into mind a couple of times, listening to 3 & 4--not surprising, I guess, given the influences y'all mention.  ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 19, 2008, 06:11:43 AM
Much as I like Braga Santos (I have the symphonies and one or two other discs of orchestral music), I find that he is a bit like Tubin (not sonically, but in terms of quality). They were both excellent composers, capable of some superb tunes and new sound worlds, but neither of them were of the very highest rank (although well above many respected composers such as Brian, Langgaard and many others). There is some great stuff in all the symphonies (my favourites of both composers being their respective fifths) but at the end of the piece you come away feeling that they were not capable of going that extra mile to being truly great composers.  BTW, IMHO, Tubin was a considerably greater symphonist than BS - his symphonies hang together so well and are teeming with great ideas (try 3 or 5 in particular) - they display true symphonic growth and momentum.

The slow movement of BS No 2, for instance, the first climax isn't earned - it just happens - how did we get to this point - by increasing the volume!

Vaughan Williams symphonies are variable in quality but I couldn't put my hand on my heart and say that Braga Santos was as great as him - far from it.  If you know VW's 5th (or 2nd/3rd/4th/6th) intimately, you would know what I mean. And to seriously compare BS with Sibelius is simply showing a prejudice against the Finn. I am not prejudiced - I enjoy the BS symphonies - but in terms of profundity and deep down satisfaction, they come up short to me. B ut that said, it's all down to personal taste, isn't it?

p.s. I've gone to get my flame retardant vest on!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 19, 2008, 03:19:07 PM
Much as I like Braga Santos (I have the symphonies and one or two other discs of orchestral music), I find that he is a bit like Tubin (not sonically, but in terms of quality). They were both excellent composers, capable of some superb tunes and new sound worlds, but neither of them were of the very highest rank (although well above many respected composers such as Brian, Langgaard and many others). There is some great stuff in all the symphonies (my favourites of both composers being their respective fifths) but at the end of the piece you come away feeling that they were not capable of going that extra mile to being truly great composers.  BTW, IMHO, Tubin was a considerably greater symphonist than BS - his symphonies hang together so well and are teeming with great ideas (try 3 or 5 in particular) - they display true symphonic growth and momentum.

The slow movement of BS No 2, for instance, the first climax isn't earned - it just happens - how did we get to this point - by increasing the volume!

Vaughan Williams symphonies are variable in quality but I couldn't put my hand on my heart and say that Braga Santos was as great as him - far from it.  If you know VW's 5th (or 2nd/3rd/4th/6th) intimately, you would know what I mean. And to seriously compare BS with Sibelius is simply showing a prejudice against the Finn. I am not prejudiced - I enjoy the BS symphonies - but in terms of profundity and deep down satisfaction, they come up short to me. B ut that said, it's all down to personal taste, isn't it?

p.s. I've gone to get my flame retardant vest on!

You say that both Braga Santos and Tubin are "excellent composers, capable of some superb tunes" and that "there is some great stuff in all the symphonies". I completely agree with you with regard to both composers.
You go on to say that "neither of them was of the very highest rank"-again, I would not disagree although I do rate Brian much higher than you would appear to do!

I totally agree that Vaughan Williams was a much greater composer than Braga Santos and I would certainly not wish to compare him with a genius like Sibelius.

What I was saying however is that Braga Santos wrote some extraordinarily beautiful and moving music. I am less attuned personally to the sound world of his later music(the 5th and 6th symphonies, for example) but in his first four symphonies-written whilst still a very young man, written before he had had the opportunity to travel abroad to study and written in a relatively small country without much of a tradition of performing orchestral music, Braga Santos manages to conjure up music which I personally find affects me deeply every time I hear it. I do hear substantial echoes of the music of Vaughan Williams, Respighi, Kodaly, Bax, Moeran, sometimes even the wide-open-spaces of some contemporary American music-even though it is highly unlikely that Braga Santos had heard much if any of the music of these composers. The tunes are-as you rightly say-superb and in these circumstances that is a remarkable achievement. I am no expert(!) on Portugese renaissance polyphony but I do wonder whether Braga Santos's modalism is not influenced to an extent by such a musical history.

No need for the "flame retardant vest"!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on May 19, 2008, 07:16:08 PM
The slow movement of BS No 2, for instance, the first climax isn't earned - it just happens - how did we get to this point - by increasing the volume!
Braga Santos' initials are distinctly unflattering in this light.  >:D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 19, 2008, 11:33:42 PM
Braga Santos' initials are distinctly unflattering in this light.  >:D

I see what you mean - unintentional and undeserved!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 19, 2008, 11:41:58 PM
What I was saying however is that Braga Santos wrote some extraordinarily beautiful and moving music. I am less attuned personally to the sound world of his later music(the 5th and 6th symphonies, for example) but in his first four symphonies-written whilst still a very young man, written before he had had the opportunity to travel abroad to study and written in a relatively small country without much of a tradition of performing orchestral music, Braga Santos manages to conjure up music which I personally find affects me deeply every time I hear it. I do hear substantial echoes of the music of Vaughan Williams, Respighi, Kodaly, Bax, Moeran, sometimes even the wide-open-spaces of some contemporary American music-even though it is highly unlikely that Braga Santos had heard much if any of the music of these composers. The tunes are-as you rightly say-superb and in these circumstances that is a remarkable achievement. I am no expert(!) on Portugese renaissance polyphony but I do wonder whether Braga Santos's modalism is not influenced to an extent by such a musical history.

No need for the "flame retardant vest"!! :)

Some very good points there. He may be an eclectic but as there was not a great tradition in Portugal for symphonic writing, his knowledge of the symphony orchestra had to come from foreign shores. However, he still managed to form a distinctive voice and anyone who knows his earlier music could recognise it as his very quickly - and that is often a sign of a great composer. I don't know much about Portugese renaissance polyphony either and so I would be risking ridicule to suggest that his music has strong roots in that period - but why not? - Tippett's music is rooted in Elizabethan polyphony, and some of the contemporaries that you mention also found inspiration in the music of several centuries prior - VW not least.

I too find many echoes of other composers in BS's music and it is interesting that you mention the wide-open-spaces of contemporary North American music - listen to a Diamond symphony and you will hear similarities in the breadth and breath of the music. I also hear a lot of South American music in his later works - his 5th symphony could be mistaken for Villa Lobos in places.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Subotnick on May 20, 2008, 12:09:10 AM
After all this, I'm going to download 2 and 3 this evening.

Hm, my emusic subscription is no match for my musical appetite...  :'( :)

You and me both!  ;D I was going to ask the same question as David. After reading here, I'm intrigued by the 2nd movement of the 2nd. Until my emusic subscription renews next month, the last.fm streams will suit me fine   :)

TTFN.
Me.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 01:57:29 AM
Very interesting discussion going on here. This kind of think is why I joined this group and, as Colin said, no need for flame-retardant vests (well, not yet anyway  :))

What I find enjoyable may well not be "great" and I may not enjoy music that clearly is considered great (ie most of Mozart... that flame retardant vest might be needed after all!)
Braga Santos/Tubin/Moeran/Brian/Langgaard are all composers whose music means a lot to me, probably because the music moves me emotionally. I don't know whether it is "great" as this is partly a subjective assessment. The CD guides often criticised compositions which depend on "atmosphere" rather than "argument" but I often prefer music which focuses on atmosphere. Of the composers discussed so far, I think that Sibelius was truly a great composer in all respects.  Vaughan Williams, maybe, to a lesser extent but symphonies 4-6 and 9 are, for me, great works. I suppose that it depends on what you mean by great.  Maybe it is work which is convincingly structured but also deeply moving (Bruckner's 8th/9th symphonies?)

Bloch is, I believe, a great composer (string quartets, schelomo, Sacred Service, Piano Quintet No 1) but many reviews claim that it sounds like the scores (or some of the orchestral ones at least) for a Hollywood soundtrack for a Biblical Epic...but this has never been a problem for me and does not, in my view, undermine Bloch's "greatness" whatever that is.

Just a few rambling thoughts...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 20, 2008, 05:04:45 AM
What I find enjoyable may well not be "great" and I may not enjoy music that clearly is considered great ...

That is one of the beauties of music - it is a personal experience, and what is good for you probably won't be good for the next person, and never let them tell you otherwise.

Too many people want to impose their personal experience on others and it just doesn't work! Everyone has to find their own way and it is that journey that enriches us all.

Now I have tried to be so profound ('when everything I am, is lying on the ground' - Peter Gabriel), I'm off to listen to something or other that I have stumbled over on my journey ...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on May 20, 2008, 05:20:17 AM
First, thanks all for the excellent comments & recommendations on this composer who currently is not in my 'expanding' collection!  ;) ;D

Second, I was reviewing some of the comments on Amazon - the first four symphonies receive universally superb comments, however, his later compositions seemed to have changed to a more atonal 'noisy' style - as an example, the disc shown below appears to have a combination of 'early' & 'later' works - our own Scott Morrison gives the CD only 3*, but breaks the recording into these two areas of the composer's writings.  Thus, I be quite curious about the feelings from those here who might provide further elucidation on these apparently differing styles - thanks, again!  :)   P.S. CLICK on the image for Scott's review!

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F4Q5CDF9L._SL500_AA240_.jpg) (http://www.amazon.com/Joly-Braga-Santos-Brillante-Divertimentos/dp/B0002JEG40/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1211292696&sr=1-6)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 20, 2008, 06:13:12 AM
First, thanks all for the excellent comments & recommendations on this composer who currently is not in my 'expanding' collection!  ;) ;D

Second, I was reviewing some of the comments on Amazon - the first four symphonies receive universally superb comments, however, his later compositions seemed to have changed to a more atonal 'noisy' style - as an example, the disc shown below appears to have a combination of 'early' & 'later' works - our own Scott Morrison gives the CD only 3*, but breaks the recording into these two areas of the composer's writings.  Thus, I be quite curious about the feelings from those here who might provide further elucidation on these apparently differing styles - thanks, again!  :)   P.S. CLICK on the image for Scott's review!

Offhand, my "benefit-of-the-doubt" rule supposes that we may need more than just one recording to do the less-mainstream-ish works justice.  I find Braga Santos's work excellent through the course of his regrettably brief career;  I don't find that the quality of his work "falls off" at all when adopting his more atonal 'noisy' style.

Consider the Beethoven model:  his first two symphonies fit fairly readily into prior symphonic tradition.  With his third, he starts to re-design the mold.  From our remove, and especially since all his nine symphonies have been standard rep for nearly 200 years, it's hard to imagine a time when people had to learn to hear Beethoven, and learn to play his music . . . but there it is.

So, I simply encourage folks not to write off any new music based on a sole recording, one may say especially if (unfortunately) there is only recording available.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on May 20, 2008, 06:29:54 AM
......................
So, I simply encourage folks not to write off any new music based on a sole recording, one may say especially if (unfortunately) there is only recording available.

Karl - thanks for the comments - just 'paraphrasing' some of the Amazonian comments since I've not heard any of his works 'to date' myself - but, will certainly start w/ those early symphonies!  Dave  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 06:30:16 AM
I see what you mean (Karl) about the later works. I have Symphony No 5 (actually managed to find the Portugalsom version as well as the one on Marco Polo). It has definitely grown on me, even if it is not as immediately approachable as Nos 1-4. It has a kind of gritty integrity to it, which I am beginning to appreciate. I think that I will listen to it again tonight.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 20, 2008, 06:32:09 AM
Sensible comments, Karl.

I listened, by the way, to the Sinfonietta for String Orchestra earlier today - invigorating music. If that is how 'late' Braga Santos sounds, I don't have any difficulty with the idiom.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: 71 dB on May 20, 2008, 07:20:58 AM
So, Joly Braga Santos is good? Well, in that case he is one of those zillion praised composers I will never know...

 ::)

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on May 20, 2008, 07:36:59 AM
So, Joly Braga Santos is good? Well, in that case he is one of those zillion praised composers I will never know...

 ::)



O, yes you will, when they are re-released by Naxos...! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: 71 dB on May 20, 2008, 07:48:09 AM
O, yes you will, when they are re-released by Naxos...! :)

I buy only about 10 % of Naxos discs, if even that...  :P

It a time issue. If I use my time to Santos it's away from another composer. I have heard only one symphony by RVW! That alone means lots of exploring. This year I won't listen to much classical music anyway...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 20, 2008, 03:13:07 PM
Very interesting discussion going on here. This kind of think is why I joined this group and, as Colin said, no need for flame-retardant vests (well, not yet anyway  :))

What I find enjoyable may well not be "great" and I may not enjoy music that clearly is considered great (ie most of Mozart... that flame retardant vest might be needed after all!)
Braga Santos/Tubin/Moeran/Brian/Langgaard are all composers whose music means a lot to me, probably because the music moves me emotionally. I don't know whether it is "great" as this is partly a subjective assessment. The CD guides often criticised compositions which depend on "atmosphere" rather than "argument" but I often prefer music which focuses on atmosphere. Of the composers discussed so far, I think that Sibelius was truly a great composer in all respects.  Vaughan Williams, maybe, to a lesser extent but symphonies 4-6 and 9 are, for me, great works. I suppose that it depends on what you mean by great.  Maybe it is work which is convincingly structured but also deeply moving (Bruckner's 8th/9th symphonies?)

Bloch is, I believe, a great composer (string quartets, schelomo, Sacred Service, Piano Quintet No 1) but many reviews claim that it sounds like the scores (or some of the orchestral ones at least) for a Hollywood soundtrack for a Biblical Epic...but this has never been a problem for me and does not, in my view, undermine Bloch's "greatness" whatever that is.

Just a few rambling thoughts...

Absolutely! Completely agree! :)

Anyway, nothing wrong with some of those soundtracks for the old Hollywood Biblical epics! I remember as a boy being stirred by Dmitri Tiomkin's music for "The Fall of the Roman Empire"(not 'Biblical' but you know what I mean!).

That is one of the beauties of music - it is a personal experience, and what is good for you probably won't be good for the next person, and never let them tell you otherwise.

Too many people want to impose their personal experience on others and it just doesn't work! Everyone has to find their own way and it is that journey that enriches us all.

Now I have tried to be so profound ('when everything I am, is lying on the ground' - Peter Gabriel), I'm off to listen to something or other that I have stumbled over on my journey ...

Well said, sir!!

I am hugely encouraged and highly delighted that so many have indicated an interest in this thread and in Braga Santos. As vandermolen said, this is what makes being a member of this forum so worthwhile and so gratifying!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 20, 2008, 05:27:36 PM
Very interesting discussion going on here. This kind of think is why I joined this group and, as Colin said, no need for flame-retardant vests (well, not yet anyway  :))
Why I joined, too--and it's encouraging that we went two full pages before a crank tried to derail the thread. 

I still have hopes of getting turned on to a less-well known composer whose music really floats my particular little boat.  I'm not sure that's quite happened yet, but our well-meaning friends here have significantly broadened the repertoire I listen to, especially in the direction of 20th Century Brits and some Continentals (Bax, Alwyn, Janáček, Korngold, & Dutilleux come readily to mind).  Encouragement here has also broadened my appreciation of some genres, such as art-song, choral music, and opera, as well as such previously familiar but under-appreciated composers as Berlioz, Dvořák, and RVW.

Having been through this sort of thing before, hoping but not expecting the little known favorites of like minded enthusiasts to resonate as harmoniously with me as as with thee, I suppose Joly Braga Santos will prove well worth a wee bit of time to explore.   I've ordered the 4th Symphony disc and will report back when I've given it a fair hearing.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 20, 2008, 06:03:13 PM
Why I joined, too--and it's encouraging that we went two full pages before a crank tried to derail the thread. 

I still have hopes of getting turned on to a less-well known composer whose music really floats my particular little boat.  I'm not sure that's quite happened yet, but our well-meaning friends here have significantly broadened the repertoire I listen to, especially in the direction of 20th Century Brits and some Continentals (Bax, Alwyn, Janáček, Korngold, & Dutilleux come readily to mind).  Encouragement here has also broadened my appreciation of some genres, such as art-song, choral music, and opera, as well as such previously familiar but under-appreciated composers as Berlioz, Dvořák, and RVW.

Having been through this sort of thing before, hoping but not expecting the little known favorites of like minded enthusiasts to resonate as harmoniously with me as as with thee, I suppose Joly Braga Santos will prove well worth a wee bit of time to explore.   I've ordered the 4th Symphony disc and will report back when I've given it a fair hearing.

Excellent! And please do report back ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 10:00:14 PM
Excellent! And please do report back ;)

Yes, David, do let us know what you think of BS No 4.  I think that Lilburn is another composer of this sort (if you know what I mean?). First two symphonies show influence of Vaughan Williams (his teacher) and Sibelius but they are great works in their own right. Then he went all (sort of) atonal/electronic but, as with Braga Santos Symphony 5 and 6, I am beginning to appreciate Lilburn's Third Symphony. Klaus Egge is another one, but my favourite work of his is definitely the strictly tonal First Symphony (there is a lovely string quartet on Naxos). Even my wife said "what's this nice music?" when I played Egge's String Quartet on the CD player and, oddly enough, she does not usually share my taste for works like Havergal Brian's Gothic Symphony (played at top volume) ;D

Despite the negativity which sometimes crops up on this forum, it is still worthwhile and I have discovered many fine works and interesting composers through it (often due to Lilas Pastia), including Schulhoff's 5th Symphony (deeply moving in the circumstances of its composition...he died in a concentration camp), Ross Edwards' Symphony "In Pacem Domine" etc etc.

Just some more rambling thoughts and yes Colin, I love those epic soundtracks too...Ben Hur etc.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on May 20, 2008, 10:25:15 PM
Pavel Haas, and Eduard Erdmann, and Emil Bohnke, which I listen to these last few days might also be considered in this thread.
Santos I have ordered yesterday. Weingartner and Wellesz too.
And the list is long!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on May 20, 2008, 10:26:27 PM


 including Schulhoff's 5th Symphony (deeply moving in the circumstances of its composition...he died in a concentration camp), Ross Edwards' Symphony "In Pacem Domine" etc etc.


Schulhoff's Symphony is indeed a treasure to be had!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 20, 2008, 10:48:29 PM
oddly enough, she does not usually share my taste for works like Havergal Brian's Gothic Symphony (played at top volume) ;D

And these creatures demand equality?!

My wife likes Brian, though... (And don't say I force her!)

Quote
yes Colin, I love those epic soundtracks too...Ben Hur etc.

And so do I. I was obsessed with Elmer Bernstein's music for The Ten Commandments when I was 11. It led quite naturally to Wagner et al.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 11:19:09 PM
And these creatures demand equality?!

My wife likes Brian, though... (And don't say I force her!)

And so do I. I was obsessed with Elmer Bernstein's music for The Ten Commandments when I was 11. It led quite naturally to Wagner et al.

The problem with me is that I never graduated from Elmer Bernstein's "Ten Commandments" to Wagner (apart from that bit they play at the end of the movie Excalibur  ;D)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 11:23:45 PM
Pavel Haas, and Eduard Erdmann, and Emil Bohnke, which I listen to these last few days might also be considered in this thread.
Santos I have ordered yesterday. Weingartner and Wellesz too.
And the list is long!

I just discovered Bohnke; really wortwhile. Wellesz Symphony No 2 "The English" is a great score (although it doesn't sound very "English"!)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 20, 2008, 11:29:44 PM
Wellesz Symphony No 2 "The English" is a great score (although it doesn't sound very "English"!)

Perhaps it's a critique (instead of a description)!

The problem with me is that I never graduated from Elmer Bernstein's "Ten Commandments" to Wagner (apart from that bit they play at the end of the movie Excalibur  ;D)

Wagner forgives you (he is very forgiving in death).  0:)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 20, 2008, 11:34:24 PM
Perhaps it's a critique (instead of a description)!

Wagner forgives you (he is very forgiving in death).  0:)

Thank you, and his spirit will be pleased to hear that I bought a complete ring cycle recently (for £15 :o). On balance, though, I prefer Braga Santos.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 21, 2008, 03:34:28 AM
Yes, David, do let us know what you think of BS No 4.  I think that Lilburn is another composer of this sort (if you know what I mean?).
The other Sibelius nut around here (or who used to be around here), Benji (aka Mog), urged me to try Lilburn.  I bought the symphonies with Judd and several other orchestral works with Southgate.  Every so often mention of him stirs me to take them out and listen again.  Though the music is pleasant and seems crafted well enough, it's never caught fire with me, such that I come home from work one evening and say to myself, "I'm really in the mood for some Lilburn tonight!" 

Your mention of him, however, compels me to spin one of those discs after work today!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2008, 05:52:40 AM
The other Sibelius nut around here (or who used to be around here), Benji (aka Mog), urged me to try Lilburn.  I bought the symphonies with Judd and several other orchestral works with Southgate.  Every so often mention of him stirs me to take them out and listen again.  Though the music is pleasant and seems crafted well enough, it's never caught fire with me, such that I come home from work one evening and say to myself, "I'm really in the mood for some Lilburn tonight!" 

Your mention of him, however, compels me to spin one of those discs after work today!

 :) His Symphony No 1 is now my favourite.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 21, 2008, 05:59:51 AM
:) His Symphony No 1 is now my favourite.

I started listening to the Second yesterday, but was interrupted. Perhaps I'll begin again where Lilburn began...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2008, 02:03:46 PM
I started listening to the Second yesterday, but was interrupted. Perhaps I'll begin again where Lilburn began...

No 2 is more highly regarded but the first movement of Symphony 1 and the conclusion are, I think, Lilburn's finest achievement.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 21, 2008, 02:12:12 PM
No 2 is more highly regarded but the first movement of Symphony 1 and the conclusion are, I think, Lilburn's finest achievement.

I'll put that to the test first thing tomorrow (today)!  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2008, 02:13:53 PM
I'll put that to the test first thing tomorrow (today)!  :)

Let us know what you think Johan  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 21, 2008, 11:48:53 PM
Listening to Lilburn's Symphony No. 1. The music is very accomplished, though I'll have to listen to it two times at least, to get all the Sibelius reminiscences out of the way and to see what Lilburn himself is doing. This is a very strange experience, when you hear the music through the filter of another composer. But still -the music isn't in essence derivative. But how exactly Lilburn is different I don't know yet.

Edit: The curious case of Douglas Lilburn... I have listened to the First two times now. Things did start to become clearer, especially the first movement, though the pervasive presence of Sibelius didn't stop 'clouding' my aural vision. Lilburn seems to have distilled (if that's possible) the style of the Fourth and Tapiola and made an original symphony out of it. The Moeran and Walton 1 are also influenced by Sibelius, but not in this extraordinary way. I hope Lilburn's Second will shed more light on its predecessor. Very strange.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2008, 01:36:37 AM
Listening to Lilburn's Symphony No. 1. The music is very accomplished, though I'll have to listen to it two times at least, to get all the Sibelius reminiscences out of the way and to see what Lilburn himself is doing. This is a very strange experience, when you hear the music through the filter of another composer. But still -the music isn't in essence derivative. But how exactly Lilburn is different I don't know yet.

Edit: The curious case of Douglas Lilburn... I have listened to the First two times now. Things did start to become clearer, especially the first movement, though the pervasive presence of Sibelius didn't stop 'clouding' my aural vision. Lilburn seems to have distilled (if that's possible) the style of the Fourth and Tapiola and made an original symphony out of it. The Moeran and Walton 1 are also influenced by Sibelius, but not in this extraordinary way. I hope Lilburn's Second will shed more light on its predecessor. Very strange.

Thanks Johan for the interesting feedback. Lilburn's Aotearoa Overture is another favourite.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 22, 2008, 01:48:51 AM
How many of us have heard all six of the Braga Santos symphonies?  Just curious.  I've only heard half of them (Second, Third & Sixth) . . . at present, I am (correctly) preoccupied with getting some music written, else this thread would encourage me to revisit these three of the Braga Santos symphonies (something which I have a good will to do, all the same).
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 02:19:57 AM
How many of us have heard all six of the Braga Santos symphonies?  Just curious.

Christo has. I have listened to the Second and the Fourth so far.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2008, 02:23:54 AM
I have them all.

Favourites in order

No 4/No 3
No 1
No 2
No 5
No 6
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on May 22, 2008, 02:33:55 AM
I have them all.

Favourites in order

No 4/No 3
No 1
No 2
No 5
No 6

You are a lucky fellow, I am not getting them complete, without investing a enormous amount of money. :P
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 02:37:05 AM
I have them all.

Favourites in order

No 4/No 3
No 1
No 2
No 5
No 6

Sorry, Jeffrey. I didn't know you had heard all of them, too...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 22, 2008, 03:09:42 AM
Thanks, Johan, Jeffrey & Harry!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 22, 2008, 03:37:06 AM
I have them all.

Favourites in order

No 4/No 3
No 1
No 2
No 5
No 6

Me, too.....!!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 03:39:55 AM
Me, too.....!!! :)

I give up.  :-[

New question: who hasn't heard all the Braga Santos symphonies?  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 22, 2008, 04:49:01 AM
Overlooked this threat untill Johan pointed me to it, so here I am, but with little to add. For what Dundonnell and Vandermolen have told is all very correct and very much in line with my impressions. I also prefer nos 3 and 4, closely followed by 1 and 2, and I have a genuine liking for both nos 5 and 6 too (the tonal ending of no. 6, an extended and very melancholic sort of Sea Song, is quite remarkable imho).

I don't think, much of Braga Santos's other pieces have been discussed here, yet. I must say, I love them all, but especially: Divertimento no. 1, Variações sobre um tema alentejano, the Viola concerto.

One more remark, if you all here allow me. However much I revere him, and I do love the symphonies, yet I never felt him to be a symphonist of equal status with e.g. Vaughan Williams or Tubin. The reason being, that I feel his symphonies 1-4 (and other compositions from his twenties, he wrote these four symphonies between the age of 21 and 27 ...) are derivative of his examples, especially some British composers.

He obviously knew Vaughan Williams, Moeran and Walton, to mention the strongest influences in these early symphonies. I even accidently discovered a direct link, perhaps a quote. Imo, the opening bars of the Scherzo of the Third Symphony (1949) are almost identical to the opening bars of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945).

Could he have heard Moeran on the BBC long wire, in 1946 or 1947? Portugal had strong British connections, in those days, and I know Braga Santos owned LPs with British music, but probably he was able to hear them on the Radio? Could any of our Portuguese friends here help us here?


Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 05:02:02 AM
He obviously knew Vaughan Williams, Moeran and Walton, to mention the strongest influences in these early symphonies. I even accidently discovered a direct link, perhaps a quote. Imo, the opening bars of the Scherzo of the Third Symphony (1949) are almost identical to the opening bars of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945).

Just checked. Hm... I think there is a far stronger similarity between the third movement (Allegro tranquillo) of BS's Fourth and the 3rd movement (Vivace) of Moeran's Symphony... But interesting all the same that BS could have heard English music! There is the famous Heward recording from 1942(4?) of Moeran's Symphony he could have heard, for example.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 22, 2008, 05:08:26 AM
Just checked. Hm...

I don't have the music, am just dependent on recordings. The similarity is not strong with e.g. Lloyd-Jones performance of the Sinfonietta with the BSO (Naxos). But looms large in quite a didfferent reading of the opening bars by Adrian Boult conducting the Philharmonic Orchestra in a BBC Radio Recording from 1963 (Carlton Classics). And I presume that version to be much closer to what Braga Santos may have heard in the 1940s ....
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 05:24:38 AM
I don't have the music, am just dependent on recordings. The similarity is not strong with e.g. Lloyd-Jones performance of the Sinfonietta with the BSO (Naxos). But looms large in quite a didfferent reading of the opening bars by Adrian Boult conducting the Philharmonic Orchestra in a BBC Radio Recording from 1963 (Carlton Classics). And I presume that version to be much closer to what Braga Santos may have heard in the 1940s ....

So am I, alas... I compared Boult on Lyrita (both Sinfonietta and Symphony) with the Marco Polo recordings. I think the similarity is stronger between Fourth and Symphony than  between Third and Sinfonietta. But others could hear this differently, of course...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2008, 06:49:04 AM
I give up.  :-[

New question: who hasn't heard all the Braga Santos symphonies?  ;D

 :)

This is all inspiring me to listen to more BS tonight. I bet he heard some VW/Moeran/Walton on the BBC or on LP. Portugal is England's oldest ally (both enemies of Spain, I guess, in the days of the Armada), so there have always been strongish cultural links. I gather from the Marco Polo notes that BS was not really appreciated in his own country and was too modest to "blow his own trumpet". Probably the Radio in Portugal was too busy playing Vaughan Williams and Moeran to find time (as they clearly should have done) to play the fine music of their greatest composer. I regard him as a worthier Portuguese national figure than Ronaldo of Manchester United  ;D :P :'((for Chelsea)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 22, 2008, 07:19:12 AM
:)

This is all inspiring me to listen to more BS tonight. I bet he heard some VW/Moeran/Walton on the BBC or on LP. Portugal is England's oldest ally (both enemies of Spain, I guess, in the days of the Armada), so there have always been strongish cultural links. I gather from the Marco Polo notes that BS was not really appreciated in his own country and was too modest to "blow his own trumpet". Probably the Radio in Portugal was too busy playing Vaughan Williams and Moeran to find time (as they clearly should have done) to play the fine music of their greatest composer. I regard him as a worthier Portuguese national figure than Ronaldo of Manchester United  ;D :P :'((for Chelsea)

The Anglo-Portugese alliance dates back to an agreement reached in 1373 confirmed in 1386 by the Treaty of Windsor and the marriage of King John I of Portugal with Philippa, daughter of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster and son of King Edward III of England. The Treaty of Windsor is still in force and makes the Anglo-Portugese alliance the oldest in the world.

However, at the time of the Spanish Armada Portugal was ruled by King Philip II of Spain who had succeeded to the Portugese throne in 1580 as heir of the last Portugese king. The crowns of Portugal and Spain were united between 1580 and 1640 and Portugese ships sailed with the Armada.

Here endeth the History lesson!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 07:35:12 AM
I regard him as a worthier Portuguese national figure than Ronaldo of Manchester United  ;D :P :'((for Chelsea)

 ;D ;D

(Poor man, he has still not recovered.)

Here endeth the History lesson!! :)

Thanks!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2008, 09:10:16 AM
The Anglo-Portugese alliance dates back to an agreement reached in 1373 confirmed in 1386 by the Treaty of Windsor and the marriage of King John I of Portugal with Philippa, daughter of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster and son of King Edward III of England. The Treaty of Windsor is still in force and makes the Anglo-Portugese alliance the oldest in the world.

However, at the time of the Spanish Armada Portugal was ruled by King Philip II of Spain who had succeeded to the Portugese throne in 1580 as heir of the last Portugese king. The crowns of Portugal and Spain were united between 1580 and 1640 and Portugese ships sailed with the Armada.

Here endeth the History lesson!! :)

Thanks Colin,

"not my period" as we history teachers are inclined to say (or I do anyway!) actually it was my period at university but I have forgotten it all  ???
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 22, 2008, 10:10:34 AM
Actually, there's an even earlier episode binding us all together, here.

In the early stages of the Second Crusade a contingent of Flemish, Frisian, Norman, English, and Scottish crusaders, who collectively considered themselves "Franks", sailing for the Holy Land, arrived at Porto, where the local bishop won them over for the siege of Lisbon. Accidentally, the bishop's generous offer of huge quantities of wine (Port?) appears to have been helpful in the proceedings  :P

So, the famous siege and conquest of Lisbon (1147) was conducted by folks from regions not unknown to many of us here. Most of the crusaders actually settled in Lisbon. No doubt they are all part of the ancestry of Joly Braga Santos, who was from an old Lisboan family. (Btw: According to one of his pupils I once spoke with, he took a lively interest in the Moorish folk traditions still discernable in both the old quarters of Lisbon and his beloved countryside of the Alentejo, too.)

I propose we claim him to be a great Portuguese composer of Anglo-Scottish-Dutch descent.  ;D  8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2008, 10:12:08 AM
Accidentally, the bisshop's generous offer of huge quantities of wine (Port?) appears to have been helpful in the proceedings  :P

I propose we claim him to be a great Portuguese composer of Anglo-Scottish-Dutch descent.  ;D  8)

 ;D

 ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Guido on May 22, 2008, 10:41:43 AM
He was a very modest person. But he always had a deep admiration for Freitas Branco that helped him in the begining of his career.

Thy the Quartet and the cello Sonata of Freitas Branco by the Takacs Quartet and Perenyi and Jando, his first Symphony by Silva Pereira and, regarding Lopes Graça his "Tragic History of the Sea"conducted by Gyula Nemeth with the baryon Oliveira Lopes.


I'd be very interested in hearing the cello sonata - which label is it on?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 22, 2008, 10:35:39 PM
I propose we claim him to be a great Portuguese composer of Anglo-Scottish-Dutch descent.  ;D  8)

Or the greatest Dutch composer?  >:D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 22, 2008, 10:51:53 PM
Or the greatest Dutch composer?  >:D

The greatest English composer - perhaps. >:D Or Scottish - for sure. :-* But in the Dutch musical universe he would still rank second to a number of Great Dutch Composers  8)  (Well, perhaps just Sweelinck,  Vermeulen and Orthel)  ;)  8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 23, 2008, 05:48:25 AM
And here is a photo of the great man:

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 23, 2008, 05:56:35 AM
And here is a photo of the great man:



How interesting! First time I had seen a photo of the Portugese composer, Braga Santos :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 23, 2008, 06:07:21 AM
Btw, there's some Braga Santos to be seen/heard on Youtube, like this students orchestra's rehearsal of the Abertura Sinfónica nº 3, op.20 - Symphonic Overture no. 3:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqToNZU2_sU (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqToNZU2_sU)

Or this one, with the great final Hymn (orchestral version under Cassuto) of the Fourth Symphony - also showing some extra pictures:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGvp22sYsKU&feature=related (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGvp22sYsKU&feature=related)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 23, 2008, 06:23:30 AM
Btw, there's some Braga Santos to be seen/heard on Youtube, like this students orchestra's rehearsal of the Abertura Sinfónica nº 3, op.20 - Symphonic Overture no. 3:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqToNZU2_sU (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqToNZU2_sU)

Or this one, with the great final Hymn (orchestral version under Cassuto) of the Fourth Symphony - also showing some extra pictures:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGvp22sYsKU&feature=related (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGvp22sYsKU&feature=related)

Amazing what can be found on Youtube!!! I have just had the closing pages of the Fourth blasting out of my PC!! Thank you so much for that-now I can forward the link to friends and make them listen to it :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 23, 2008, 07:25:37 AM
Great links! Especially the fragment of the Third (which I fortunately still have to listen to) - exciting stuff!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mozartsneighbor on May 23, 2008, 11:14:22 AM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies.
I enjoy Braga Santos's music and do think that if he were English or German or French he would be on the map in a much bigger way. But actually I prefer Luis de Freitas Branco -- I am listening to his tone poem Vathek right now!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 23, 2008, 11:18:11 AM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies.
I enjoy Braga Santos's music and do think that if he were English or German or French he would be on the map in a much bigger way. But actually I prefer Luis de Freitas Branco -- I am listening to his tone poem Vathek right now!

Hello, Miguel! Well, the title Vathek confirms what has been said about the English-Portuguese connection - Vathek is a famous 18th century novel by William Beckford. What kind of piece is it - colourful, oriental?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 23, 2008, 11:53:03 AM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies.
I enjoy Braga Santos's music and do think that if he were English or German or French he would be on the map in a much bigger way. But actually I prefer Luis de Freitas Branco -- I am listening to his tone poem Vathek right now!

Welcome to this forum!

I certainly did not expect when I started this thread that it would receive so many replies and engender so much interesting discussion. That is one of the great aspects of a forum like this-that not only can one engage in such a discussion with like-minded enthusiasts, often from other parts of the world, but that passionate advocacy of a composer or of a particular composition can either remind one of music one has forgotten or can actually make others aware for the first time of undiscovered treasures.

It is very interesting that you prefer the music of Luis de Freitas Branco. Another Portugese member of this forum-val-said the same thing in an earlier posting. That certainly encourages me(and I am sure others!) to seek out his music. As you will have seen, Naxos plans to record the symphonies although I know that they are already available in Hungarian performances on Portugalsom. Can you characterize Freitas Branco's music at all? I have not heard a single note so far!

Oh, and by the way, I too for a short period in the mid-1980s seemed to lose interest in music. That was simply a reflection of my life at that time. The introduction of the CD changed all that!! :)

Hope you enjoy membership of what is-by and large-an extremely friendly forum with a lot of obviously very nice people contributing to it!!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 23, 2008, 12:07:57 PM
Here are a few snippets of the Second Symphony (track 5-8):

http://www.emusic.com/album/Alexandre-Da-Costa-Fernandes-Violin-concerto-Freitas-Branco-Symph-MP3-Download/11123000.html
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mozartsneighbor on May 23, 2008, 01:34:38 PM
Indeed Jezetha -- and you know, Beckford lived for several years in Portugal, where he took refuge until a scandal over his homosexuality blew over. He became a close friends of several Portuguese intellectuals and aristocrats, and wrote some interesting stuff about Portuguese society and customs.

I am usually an articulate person, but for some reason describing music is not a forte of mine (perhaps bc I have no music theory education). But I will try: Vathek is colorful but at the same time has a certain starkness about it. Lots of brass fanfares, wild barbaric dances, of strong climaxes. It looks back to Rimsky-Korsakov in a way, but is modern-sounding at times. The Branco's idiom is very recognizably individual though.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 23, 2008, 01:41:56 PM
Indeed Jezetha -- and you know, Beckford lived for several years in Portugal, where he took refuge until a scandal over his homosexuality blew over. He became a close friends of several Portuguese intellectuals and aristocrats, and wrote some interesting stuff about Portuguese society and customs.

I am usually an articulate person, but for some reason describing music is not a forte of mine (perhaps bc I have no music theory education). But I will try: Vathek is colorful but at the same time has a certain starkness about it. Lots of brass fanfares, wild barbaric dances, of strong climaxes. It looks back to Rimsky-Korsakov in a way, but is modern-sounding at times. The Branco's idiom is very recognizably individual though.

Interesting info about Beckford! Your description of the music is very good. Btw, I listened to those fragments of the Second Symphony on eMusic - Branco sounds much more reserved than Braga Santos. 'Stark' is the right word, perhaps. And 'serious'.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 23, 2008, 03:08:31 PM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies.

Welcome, Miguel!  And thank you for putting Luis de Freitas Branco on my musical radar!  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2008, 12:46:28 AM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies.
I enjoy Braga Santos's music and do think that if he were English or German or French he would be on the map in a much bigger way. But actually I prefer Luis de Freitas Branco -- I am listening to his tone poem Vathek right now!

Welcome to this group Miguel. I wanted to ask you whether the music of Braga Santos is performed much in Portugal? Is he a well known national figure?

I have just ordered the CD below which has been very enthusiastically reviewed (both works): It contains Branco's Second Symphony and the Violin Concerto by Fernades.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 01:38:29 AM
For what it's worth - I now have listened to symphonies 2, 3 and 4. No. 3 I like best, so far. There is so much colour and energy there, and self-confidence. It remains an extraordinary fact that you can hear Moeran superimposed on RVW, and still get a sense of a distinct personality. Apart from Douglas Lilburn, I wonder whether there are more cases like this... ?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2008, 01:51:31 AM
For what it's worth - I now have listened to symphonies 2, 3 and 4. No. 3 I like best, so far. There is so much colour and energy there, and self-confidence. It remains an extraordinary fact that you can hear Moeran superimposed on RVW, and still get a sense of a distinct personality. Apart from Douglas Lilburn, I wonder whether there are more cases like this... ?

I think that Moeran himself might be another example, with the influences of VW, Bax and Walton all there, but assimilated within Moeran's own distinctive voice.

By the way, I think that Braga Santos's First Symphony shows the greatest influence of Vaughan Williams. No 3 is probably my favourite too, with a wonderfully inspiriting finale (although No 4 is equal to it). I was at the school Ball last night but still managed to find myself talking about Braga Santos and Vaughan Williams to the music loving husband of one of my colleagues. Maybe I am becoming obsessed :o
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 02:03:45 AM
I think that Moeran himself might be another example, with the influences of VW, Bax and Walton all there, but assimilated within Moeran's own distinctive voice.

Of course, you are right! And you can add Delius to the mix, too, and John Ireland. Still- it all comes out as Moeran. His Symphony especially, with those heart-rending passages in the first and last movements (Boult is unsurpassed there), is sui generis, a great poetic statement.

By the way, I think that Braga Santos's First Symphony shows the greatest influence of Vaughan Williams. No 3 is probably my favourite too, with a wonderfully inspiriting finale (although No 4 is equal to it). I was at the school Ball last night but still managed to find myself talking about Braga Santos and Vaughan Williams to the music loving husband of one of my colleagues. Maybe I am becoming obsessed :o

If they didn't have to remove 'the music loving husband' on a stretcher afterwards, your obsession will have stayed within bounds, I think.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2008, 02:12:14 AM
Of course, you are right! And you can add Delius to the mix, too, and John Ireland. Still- it all comes out as Moeran. His Symphony especially, with those heart-rending passages in the first and last movements (Boult is unsurpassed there), is sui generis, a great poetic statement.

If they didn't have to remove 'the music loving husband' on a stretcher afterwards, your obsession will have stayed within bounds, I think.

LOL  :)   You are right about Delius, Ireland and Moeran (+Sibelius). The end of the second movement is one of my favourite moments in the Moeran Symphony.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 02:22:42 AM
You are right about Delius, Ireland and Moeran (+Sibelius).

Of course, the mighty Finn! How could I forget him...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 24, 2008, 03:40:47 AM
Of course, Moeran--think I'll start the day with his lovely symphony!  (Braga Santos's number 4 won't arrive until Tuesday, drat!)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 24, 2008, 07:03:08 AM
I am Portuguese and very surprised and pleased to see so many people interested in Braga Santos. I wrote a post on him about 3-4 years ago on the Gramophone forum and there were barely any replies. I enjoy Braga Santos's music and do think that if he were English or German or French he would be on the map in a much bigger way. But actually I prefer Luis de Freitas Branco -- I am listening to his tone poem Vathek right now!

Vathek is colorful but at the same time has a certain starkness about it. Lots of brass fanfares, wild barbaric dances, of strong climaxes. It looks back to Rimsky-Korsakov in a way, but is modern-sounding at times. The Branco's idiom is very recognizably individual though.

You are the first, as far as I’m aware, to point us towards Luis de Freitas Branco and his highly interesting symphonic poem Vathek (1914). I happen to know it (own the Portugalsom CD with it) and it’s extraordinary indeed, all the more intriguing for it’s use of Portuguese Moorish traditional music in an early-modernist setting. I’m extremely happy to read your comment and to learn that Freitas Branco and his most gifted pupil have their supporters in Portugal. I always planned to invest more in Freitas Branco, but to my regrets I only know his First symphony, not the other ones. But Dundonnell kindly informs us Naxos is going to do the whole cycle:

As you will have seen, Naxos plans to record the symphonies although I know that they are already available in Hungarian performances on Portugalsom.

Btw: I read some very positive reviews of, as far as I know, the only CD that offers works by both composers. Both Braga Santos’ works are available on Marco Polo and the Divertimento no. 1 also on Portugalsom, but Freitas Branco’s Violin Concerto, dating from the same years as Vathek, is a premiere recording. Perhaps earlier in this thread somebody wrote a personal review, already?
                        (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2006/July06/FREITAS_BRANCO_VMS158.jpg)

Luis de Freitas Branco (1890-1955), Violin Concerto (1916) [31:52]
Joly Braga Santos (1924-1988), Crossroads Ballet (1968) [16:22] Divertimento No.1 (1960) [20:41]
Alexandre da Costa (violin), Orquestra Sinfónica de Extremadura under Jesús Amigo.
Recorded in the Palacio de Congresos y Exposociones de Merida, October 2004. VMS 158 [total timing 69:28]
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on May 24, 2008, 07:11:07 AM
I have listen to samples from the Second symphony by Branco, and his Violin Concerto, and both recordings are on my ordering list.
What a amazing sound world this guy creates.
How many composers more are coming my way I wonder?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mozartsneighbor on May 24, 2008, 08:37:09 AM
Vandermolen: can't really help you with that question of Freitas Branco's popularity and standing in Portugal. I haven't lived in Portugal since I was 15. Back then I wasn't very into classical music and can't recall hearing his music. I only spend a couple of weeks there each year now and so can't really say.  :-\
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 24, 2008, 09:21:45 AM
The Naxos website under 'News' reported last September  that the company is planning to record all the 5 Freitas Branco symphonies on four discs! No. 1 was recorded in Dublin by the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland under Alvaro Cassuto-the conductor of the Braga Santos series.


That's the news I was looking for. Great news indeed, since this particular combination, Cassuto conducting the NSO of Ireland produced the finest of all recordings available in the Marco Polo series, imo, namely the one with the Fourth Symphony and Alentejo Variations.

(My other preferred recording being the Third with Cassuto conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, a Portugalsom CD, also a recording served well by a superior orchestra, and finer than his second attempt with the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra for Marco Polo.)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 09:40:07 AM

That's the news I was looking for. Great news indeed, since this particular combination, Cassuto conducting the NSO of Ireland produced the finest of all recordings available in the Marco Polo series, imo, namely the one with the Fourth Symphony and Alentejo Variations.

(My other preferred recording being the Third with Cassuto conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, a Portugalsom CD, also a recording served well by a superior orchestra, and finer than his second attempt with the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra for Marco Polo.)

A performance that convinced me on a first hearing! The Portugalsom must be quite something...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 24, 2008, 10:27:27 AM
A performance that convinced me on a first hearing! The Portugalsom must be quite something...

It is - and here it is:
                           (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2000/apr00/santos3.jpg)

For that reason, the Third, in this performance, is still my favourite Braga Santos symphony. This was actually the one I encountered first, back in 1999. It made the same sort of revelationary effect as did Tubin's Fourth, the Lirica, which I accidentally heard in the radio in 1983 or 1984.

Actually, in my perception, this Third comes closest to Vaughan Williams - as does indeed Tubin's Fourth, another point of reference for me. At the same time, neither really resembles RVW, and I completely agree with you that Braga Santos is much closer to Moeran in many respects - keeping in mind not only Moeran's Symphony and Sinfonietta, but the violin and cello concertos as well. At the same time: Braga Santos was very young and extremely inventive and composed four symphonies in just five years time, while Moeran's symphony took a decade or so and was the outcome of a long term development.

Perhaps you, Johan, could present us with a detailed comparision of both composers? Or would you propose to take Lilburn into account as well? Or indeed Tubin? Perhaps even Miaskovsky? (The reason being, that I suspect we might discover a direct link between Moeran and Braga Santos, but connections with e.g. Tubin and Lilburn are simply out of the question, and yet they both composed in a similar style at about the same time.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 11:09:54 AM
Actually, in my perception, this Third comes closest to Vaughan Williams - as does indeed Tubin's Fourth, another point of reference for me. At the same time, neither really resembles RVW, and I completely agree with you that Braga Santos is much closer to Moeran in many respects - keeping in mind not only Moeran's Symphony and Sinfonietta, but the violin and cello concertos as well.

Perhaps you, Johan, could present us with a detailed comparision of both composers? Or would you propose to take Lilburn into account as well? Or indeed Tubin? Perhaps even Miaskovsky? (The reason being, that I suspect we might discover a direct link between Moeran and Braga Santos, but connections with e.g. Tubin and Lilburn are simply out of the question, and yet they both composed in a similar style at about the same time.

Question: if Braga Santos comes closest to RVW in his Third, the RVW of which symphony/style are we talking about? Now you mention it, I was reminded of Vaughan Williams, but in a more 'spiritual' sense. Moeran is present more literallly: in BS's 3-1 I could hear the first movement of Moeran's symphony quite clearly. Influence or astonishing affinity?

I rate Tubin's Fourth as highly as you do - it spoke to me immediately and it never fails to inspire me. BS's Third did, almost, the same this afternoon.

I don't know if you are joking about a thorough comparison. But all those inter-relationships are intriguing. Give me another year. I am slowly working my way through the Myaskovsky canon (17, 25 and 27 are works that grip and move me in the same way Moeran et al do), and Lilburn is still overshadowed too much by Sibelius (for me, that is) to give me a clear view. Give me another year, after I have assimilated all these composers and then, perhaps, I can come up with something... Now is too early.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 24, 2008, 11:50:12 AM
. . . At the same time, neither really resembles RVW, and I completely agree with you that Braga Santos is much closer to Moeran in many respects  . . . .

Not knowing Moeran at all, I cannot comment on that comparison.  Without necessarily throwing spanners in the works of those who do (for one thing, I've only heard three of the Braga Santos symphonies, for instance), I myself have not remarked any especial resemblance between the Portuguese master, and Vaughan Williams.  I like both composers, know rather a great deal more of the English composer's work than of Braga Santos's . . . to my ear, their voices are distinct.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2008, 12:23:45 PM
Vandermolen: can't really help you with that question of Freitas Branco's popularity and standing in Portugal. I haven't lived in Portugal since I was 15. Back then I wasn't very into classical music and can't recall hearing his music. I only spend a couple of weeks there each year now and so can't really say.  :-\

Thanks anyway  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2008, 12:28:50 PM
Because of all the interest here I played my Marco Polo CD of BS Symphony No 3 today.  The opening immediately reminded me of the opening of Vaughan Williams's 5th Symphony. I wish that Portugalsom hadn't disappeared as I'd love to hear that version too. I love the last movement of BS's 3rd Symphony.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on May 26, 2008, 12:34:15 PM
I love the last movement of BS's 3rd Symphony.

That, btw, is a highly interesting remark. As the final (fourth) movement is rather different from the first three - more abstract in the classical sense. I myself discovered recently that my whole view of the Third is based on the first three movements, and only recently did I really invest time in listening to the fourth. Great that you love it!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 27, 2008, 01:16:05 AM
That, btw, is a highly interesting remark. As the final (fourth) movement is rather different from the first three - more abstract in the classical sense. I myself discovered recently that my whole view of the Third is based on the first three movements, and only recently did I really invest time in listening to the fourth. Great that you love it!

Have just listened to No 4. Here, the slow movement is my favourite, deeply moving. Am curious to hear the choral version of the finale. Difficult to decide between No 3 and 4 as to my favourite BS symphony.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Thom on May 27, 2008, 02:12:25 AM
This thread has completely eluded me so far for one reason or another. Because RVW, Moeran (+Sibelius) and Tubin are very much part of my musical universum and you guys know your business there is nothing else to it. So I have to explore Braga Santos' music. Thank you for guiding the way to - I am sure - another important discovery!

Th.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on May 28, 2008, 09:21:05 AM
I've listened to the 4th Symphony recorded by Cassuto and already look forward to hearing more.  Tuneful and sweet, hardly a powerhouse, but not superficial, either--pleasant, in the best sense, and distinctive rather than derivative.  I particularly liked the 2nd and 3rd movements; the tuttis in the 1st and 4th seemed a bit too predictable, expected, mannered--yet I wondered what the finale would be like with a really ballsy orchestra under a conductor who just let 'er rip!

I heard almost nothing that recalled Sibelius, except for the lilting theme in the 3rd that reminded me somewhat of The Oceanides, but the emotional space reminded me of a refined, stripped-down Bax (of course without the density and excess Bax would hardly be Bax, would he!).  This brief exposure really reminded me more of Delius than anyone else, although movie composers like John Barry and James Horner came to mind more than once.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 28, 2008, 10:28:10 AM
I've listened to the 4th Symphony recorded by Cassuto and already look forward to hearing more.  Tuneful and sweet, hardly a powerhouse, but not superficial, either--pleasant, in the best sense, and distinctive rather than derivative.  I particularly liked the 2nd and 3rd movements; the tuttis in the 1st and 4th seemed a bit too predictable, expected, mannered--yet I wondered what the finale would be like with a really ballsy orchestra under a conductor who just let 'er rip!

I heard almost nothing that recalled Sibelius, except for the lilting theme in the 3rd that reminded me somewhat of The Oceanides, but the emotional space reminded me of a refined, stripped-down Bax (of course without the density and excess Bax would hardly be Bax, would he!).  This brief exposure really reminded me more of Delius than anyone else, although movie composers like John Barry and James Horner came to mind more than once.

Thanks for the interesting feedback David. Vaughan Williams comes to mind when I listen to Braga Santos; especially Symphony No 1 and the opening of No 3. If you don't already know it I'd strongly recommend No 3; a great work in my view.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 28, 2008, 11:12:33 PM
As it's been a long time, I thought I'd listen to the finale of No4 - oh boy, that needs a trim - it's 16' long and has a great main theme but it is dragged out far too long - I think this is an example of why BS wasn't a great composer -  he didn't know when he had said enough.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 29, 2008, 12:13:13 AM
As it's been a long time, I thought I'd listen to the finale of No4 - oh boy, that needs a trim - it's 16' long and has a great main theme but it is dragged out far too long - I think this is an example of why BS wasn't a great composer -  he didn't know when he had said enough.

Yes, I see what you mean, but I think that the end of Symphony No 3 is great and does not go on for a moment too long.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on May 29, 2008, 07:12:55 AM
As it's been a long time, I thought I'd listen to the finale of No4 - oh boy, that needs a trim - it's 16' long and has a great main theme but it is dragged out far too long - I think this is an example of why BS wasn't a great composer -  he didn't know when he had said enough.

Quote from: Hurwitz
In my review of the only other performance of this magnificent symphony (on Portugalsom), I expressed the hope that Álvaro Cassuto's forthcoming recording would not include the insipid chorus that the composer superimposed on the finale's coda at the suggestion of conductor Silva Pereira, an addition that creates an ending at once bombastic, anti-climactic, and incompatible with what had come before. Happily Cassuto agrees with this assessment, and so presents the work in its pristine, incomparably gorgeous original version. Although Santos was only 27 when he completed his Fourth Symphony, it represents a culmination of his first stylistic phase, that characterful mingling of Vaughan Williams (in its modal harmony), Respighi (the "Pines of Rome" climax of the slow movement), and Sibelius (scherzo of the Fourth Symphony) that comes out sounding wholly natural and homogenous.

The symphony's four well-balanced movements last more than 50 minutes, making this piece the composer's longest and grandest orchestral work in any form, and it all culminates in a finale whose allegro contains 10 of the most purely exhilarating minutes of orchestral writing that you will ever hear. In his excellent notes to this recording, conductor Cassuto expresses his disappointment that Santos gradually abandoned this appealing idiom after completing this symphony in 1951 and turned to more avant-garde musical explorations. Many music lovers will agree, but it's difficult to see what Santos could have done after this stunning work but repeat himself, however attractively, and I certainly would not want to be without the Fifth Symphony of 1965, one of the most astonishing and original of 20th century masterpieces in the medium.

In any event, Cassuto coaxes from his Irish players a performance of boundless energy and excitement. The allegro sections of both outer movements really rip, and Marco Polo has managed spectacular sonics: just listen to the way the recording captures Cassuto's steady build-up of the second movement's climactic march, from the soft thud of the bass drum through to its glowingly rich-textured brass summit. The same observations hold true for the Symphonic Variations, one of the most purely beautiful pieces of music in any medium (Santos obviously had an eye on the "Sunrise" from Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe in the work's first section). Once again, in playing the game of reminiscences it's easy to ignore the composer's originality, but the synthesis that he achieves in this music is wholly personal. This performance of the Fourth Symphony in particular, effectively its CD premiere, must be accounted an event of the first magnitude, not to be missed. On now, please, to the haunting Divertimento No. 1 and the concertos! [9/28/2002]

Hurwitz doesn't sound as if he wished the symphony at all shorter than it is . . . .
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: mr_espansiva on May 30, 2008, 12:12:47 AM
Yes, I see what you mean, but I think that the end of Symphony No 3 is great and does not go on for a moment too long.

Hurwitz doesn't sound as if he wished the symphony at all shorter than it is . . . .

I haven't listened to the first three movements yet (not recently) , so I suspect my comments about the finale of No 4 being overlong are somewhat out of context, and that shortening it would cause balance problems with the rest of the symphony.

Whatever the shortcomings or not of his music, he could certainly write a damn good tune, and I reckon one of his symphonies would go down a storm at a Proms concert - what are the chances ...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on May 30, 2008, 12:22:04 AM
I think that you know the answer to that!

NIL......sadly :( :(
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 01, 2008, 08:44:15 AM
Saw the refreshed Naxos site, today. Next month will see the first release in the announced series of Luís de Freitas Branco's symphonies, starting with his First - coupled with the Scherzo fantastique & Suite alentejana No. 1:

                             (http://www.naxos.com/SharedFiles/Images/cds/570765.gif)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 01, 2008, 09:03:27 AM
Saw the refreshed Naxos site, today. Next month will see the first release in the announced series of Luís de Freitas Branco's symphonies, starting with his First - coupled with the Scherzo fantastique & Suite alentejana No. 1:

                             (http://www.naxos.com/SharedFiles/Images/cds/570765.gif)

Thanks Johan, that's interesting news. I expect that you'll be putting on your clogs to run down to the CD shop to buy it (but is it possible to run in clogs?) ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 01, 2008, 09:04:51 AM
Saw the refreshed Naxos site, today. Next month will see the first release in the announced series of Luís de Freitas Branco's symphonies, starting with his First - coupled with the Scherzo fantastique & Suite alentejana No. 1:

                             (http://www.naxos.com/SharedFiles/Images/cds/570765.gif)

Thanks for that news!

I got quite excited=for a few seconds-when I saw the first release in a series of Malipiero symphonies...until I realised that it was the re-release of the Almeida set from Marco Polo, sadly let down by the Moscow Symphony Orchestra's manifest unfamiliarity with the idiom!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 01, 2008, 09:51:17 AM
Thanks Johan, that's interesting news. I expect that you'll be putting on your clogs to run down to the CD shop to buy it (but is it possible to run in clogs?) ;D

Who's talking about running in them ?   8)

                 (http://www.hpb.gov.sg/staff/voices/0607/images/erwin_clog.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on June 01, 2008, 01:19:53 PM
Thanks Johan, that's interesting news. I expect that you'll be putting on your clogs to run down to the CD shop to buy it (but is it possible to run in clogs?) ;D

Certainly clogs have to be run in, ignore the remark of Christo about this, all he had on his feet were leather shoes so how should he know. I on the other hand I have walked on them, and in the garden still do, for 25 years so, I should know about the running in business.  ;D ;D ;D
Johan no offense meant, do you hear? ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 02, 2008, 03:22:58 AM
It is time that I made the acquaintance of the rest of Braga Santos's symphonies . . . .
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 02, 2008, 11:57:44 AM
Certainly clogs have to be run in, ignore the remark of Christo about this, all he had on his feet were leather shoes so how should he know. I on the other hand I have walked on them, and in the garden still do, for 25 years so, I should know about the running in business.  ;D ;D ;D
Johan no offense meant, do you hear? ;)

Dear Harry, you misread me. Again. :'( I did use to wear clogs in my life, quite often, even. ;D Of this type, to be precise:
                                                                            (http://www.dutchflowerskc.com/images/klompen_original.jpg)

But no: I'm certainly not angry with you. How could I???   :) ;) 0:) 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 02, 2008, 05:10:16 PM
Thanks for that news!

I got quite excited=for a few seconds-when I saw the first release in a series of Malipiero symphonies...until I realised that it was the re-release of the Almeida set from Marco Polo, sadly let down by the Moscow Symphony Orchestra's manifest unfamiliarity with the idiom!
Indeed, I was a bit disappointed too; Naxos should at least re-release the superior performances from their back-catalog if they intend to do so!  :(

Anyways, my first listen right now to the music of Joly Braga Santos. Specifically, this disc:

(http://www.naxosdirect.com/templates/shared/images/titles/largest/636943523322.jpg)

So far I am loving it! The Variations were phenomenal - a piece that deserves to be a "popular" classic with a mainstay position in concert halls. It would go down well with almost any audience!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 02, 2008, 05:16:13 PM
Excellent, Brian!

Hope we have another convert here! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 02, 2008, 05:24:20 PM
Excellent, Brian!

Hope we have another convert here! :)
I think the second movement of the Fourth Symphony is about to convert me in a very serious way.  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 02, 2008, 05:53:20 PM
I think the second movement of the Fourth Symphony is about to convert me in a very serious way.  :D
The finale seals the deal. This is an extraordinary symphony. I must hear more!  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 02, 2008, 10:15:54 PM
The finale seals the deal. This is an extraordinary symphony. I must hear more!  :D

Very pleased that you like it so much! No 3 is my next favourite...great inspiriting finale.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 03, 2008, 12:06:14 AM
Yesterday's revisitations included the one-act ballet Encruzilhada (Crossroads) and the Sixth Symphony; and the more I listen, the better I like them (and I started out liking them from the initial listens).
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 03, 2008, 07:35:20 AM
Well, this has been an interesting read (thank you, gentlemen). A composer I don't know at all but one I think I'll like. Without hearing any samples (just on the recommendations of the good folks here) I ordered the four Marco Polo CDs of the symphonies from amazon.de. They were in stock and for a good price (€7.99 each). Should have them in my hands by the end of the week.


Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 03, 2008, 07:40:24 AM
Well, there you are, Sarge: if Harvey Korman is enthusiastic: . . .
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 03, 2008, 09:00:40 AM
Well, there you are, Sarge: if Harvey Korman is enthusiastic: . . .

Exactly...if it's good enough for Hedley, it's good enough for me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 03, 2008, 04:21:49 PM
Well, there you are, Sarge: if Harvey Korman is enthusiastic: . . .
JBS' symphonies are aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought, careening through a cosmic vapor of invention!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on June 03, 2008, 04:59:35 PM
Well, this has been an interesting read (thank you, gentlemen). A composer I don't know at all but one I think I'll like.....

Well, I'm in the same 'frame of mind' as Sarge - I'm amazed that this thread has gone on for so many pages - we've had a bunch of 'lesser known' composers in other threads (some of which I've started!) that seem to go no where, but the interest in this composer is captivating!

Consequently, I've ordered a couple of CDs which should arrive shortly - really looking forward to see what all of the fuss is about?  ;) ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 03, 2008, 09:31:20 PM
Well, I'm in the same 'frame of mind' as Sarge - I'm amazed that this thread has gone on for so many pages - we've had a bunch of 'lesser known' composers in other threads (some of which I've started!) that seem to go no where, but the interest in this composer is captivating!

Consequently, I've ordered a couple of CDs which should arrive shortly - really looking forward to see what all of the fuss is about?  ;) ;D

Okay, I'll come clean! I must speak out! This is going too well... This whole thread has been an experiment (conducted by Dundonnell, vandermolen, Christo and other so-called 'Braga Santos experts') to see whether an inordinate amount of enthusiasm could persuade people to buy CDs by a deservedly unknown third-rater from Portugal (of all places). I was the first victim of this 'viral' scam. Only shame prevented me from disclosing the terrible truth earlier.

Sorry, guys, you're on Candid Camera Musica.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 03, 2008, 11:30:25 PM
Okay, I'll come clean! I must speak out! This is going too well... This whole thread has been an experiment (conducted by Dundonnell, vandermolen, Christo and other so-called 'Braga Santos experts') to see whether an inordinate amount of enthusiasm could persuade people to buy CDs by a deservedly unknown third-rater from Portugal (of all places). I was the first victim of this 'viral' scam. Only shame prevented me from disclosing the terrible truth earlier.

Sorry, guys, you're on Candid Camera Musica.

The other thing that perceptive observers may have noticed about this long-running thread is that it is inhabited mainly, but not exclusively, by charming mad dutchmen who wear clogs and consume Edam cheese and a few sensible British or Scottish types like myself and Dundonnell  ;D Although as "van der molen" is a dutch name, I guess that I am half mad myself ;D

I would point out, in response to Johan's above posting that at my wedding, my brother, in a speech, stated that my new wife was "doomed to years of listening to music by deservedly neglected composers" ::)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 12:34:02 AM
I would point out, in response to Johan's above posting that at my wedding, my brother, in a speech, stated that my new wife was "doomed to years of listening to music by deservedly neglected composers" ::)

I don't know why, but my wife just asked for your brother's address.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 04, 2008, 01:28:45 AM
The other thing that perceptive observers may have noticed about this long-running thread is that it is inhabited mainly, but not exclusively, by charming mad dutchmen who wear clogs and consume Edam cheese and a few sensible British or Scottish types like myself and Dundonnell  ;D Although as "van der molen" is a dutch name, I guess that I am half mad myself ;D

Well, you can add some Mad Belgians aswell.....Hardly any clogs left here, but I have - and love - all the JBS symphonies . Nrs 3 and 6 are my favorites.

Peter
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 01:52:22 AM
Well, you can add some Mad Belgians aswell.....Hardly any clogs left here, but I have - and love - all the JBS symphonies . Nrs 3 and 6 are my favorites.

Peter

Mad Belgians are more than welcome  :)

Actually there are some lesser known Belgian composers whose music I greatly admire (I think they're Belgian anyway!)

Devreese (Gothic Symphony, In Memoriam...great works)

Meulemans "Pliny's Fountain" (beautiful work)

Sternefeld (powerful Symphony on Marco Polo)

+ there is my love for the Tintin books, but that's another story!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 04, 2008, 02:31:49 AM
The other thing that perceptive observers may have noticed about this long-running thread is that it is inhabited mainly, but not exclusively, by charming mad dutchmen who wear clogs and consume Edam cheese

How interesting indeed! I would be interested to learn their names & adresses!  8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 04, 2008, 02:35:22 AM
JBS' symphonies are aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought, careening through a cosmic vapor of invention!

God darnit, Brian, you use your tongue prettier than a twenty dollar whore.

Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 04, 2008, 02:36:15 AM
Sorry, guys, you're on Candid Camera Musica.

 ;D :D ;D   we've been punk'd by the Dutch!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 02:49:38 AM
+ there is my love for the Tintin books, but that's another story!

It will please you then, Jeffrey, that Captain Haddock's castle is called, in Dutch, 'Molensloot'!

God darnit, Brian, you use your tongue prettier than a twenty dollar whore.

Well, that saves you the agony of choice next time.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 03:56:26 AM
Well, I'm in the same 'frame of mind' as Sarge - I'm amazed that this thread has gone on for so many pages - we've had a bunch of 'lesser known' composers in other threads (some of which I've started!) that seem to go no where, but the interest in this composer is captivating!


Ditto!

JBS' symphonies are aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought, careening through a cosmic vapor of invention!

Are you being serious!! :)

Okay, I'll come clean! I must speak out! This is going too well... This whole thread has been an experiment (conducted by Dundonnell, vandermolen, Christo and other so-called 'Braga Santos experts') to see whether an inordinate amount of enthusiasm could persuade people to buy CDs by a deservedly unknown third-rater from Portugal (of all places). I was the first victim of this 'viral' scam. Only shame prevented me from disclosing the terrible truth earlier.

Sorry, guys, you're on Candid Camera Musica.

Oh Johan, why did you have to tell them?? The scam was going SO well!!

I am planning an expedition to sell ice to the Eskimos next :) :)

The other thing that perceptive observers may have noticed about this long-running thread is that it is inhabited mainly, but not exclusively, by charming mad dutchmen who wear clogs and consume Edam cheese and a few sensible British or Scottish types like myself and Dundonnell  ;D Although as "van der molen" is a dutch name, I guess that I am half mad myself ;D

I am SO grateful to you for NOT mentioning KILTS again!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 04, 2008, 04:47:14 AM
Are you being serious!! :)

It's a quote from the Hedley Lamarr character in Blazing Saddles (as is my reply to Brian, a quote from the movie that is; different character)....but I'm sure it was meant in all seriousness  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 05:05:28 AM
It's a quote from the Hedley Lamarr character in Blazing Saddles (as is my reply to Brian, a quote from the movie that is; different character)....but I'm sure it was meant in all seriousness  ;)

Sarge

I didn't know it was a quote from Blazing Saddles...

I thought it was strong stuff (not that you aren't capable of coming up with strong stuff)!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 04, 2008, 05:07:06 AM
I didn't know it was a quote from Blazing Saddles...

I thought it was strong stuff (not that you aren't capable of coming up with strong stuff)!

No, I can't claim that line as my own. I owe it all to Mel Brooks.

Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Thom on June 04, 2008, 05:53:17 AM
It is maybe because I also belong to that tribe of mad Dutch "clog'ers"  ;), but so far I have been listening to the 3d and 4th symphonies and I find these wonderful. A great find, again.

Thom
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 04, 2008, 05:53:52 AM
Well, that saves you the agony of choice next time.
Oh dear.  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 06:04:11 AM
I don't know why, but my wife just asked for your brother's address.

Actually, a 'friend' informed me that my brother could simply have ended his speech after the word 'doomed' >:(
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 07:08:14 AM
Actually, a 'friend' informed me that my brother could simply have ended his speech after the word 'doomed' >:(

I hope he was joking! What was this friend's name? Corporal Frazer?!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 07:11:09 AM
It's a quote from the Hedley Lamarr character in Blazing Saddles (as is my reply to Brian, a quote from the movie that is; different character)....but I'm sure it was meant in all seriousness  ;)

Sarge

Ah.......! Good film, great character(actor sadly died recently, I see).

Don't think that even I would put Braga Santos THAT high but three cheers for enthusiasm which doesn't beat about the bush(if you can have such a strange concept :))
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 07:13:15 AM
I hope he was joking! What was this friend's name? Corporal Frazer?!

Nothing like a funny Scotsman, is there? :) :)

Go on...tell us there is Dutch comedy to match classic British TV!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 07:21:58 AM
Nothing like a funny Scotsman, is there? :) :)

If you take out the Scotsmen, you take out the magic.

Quote
Go on...tell us there is Dutch comedy to match classic British TV!

No, there isn't it. There is a great theatrical tradition in the British Isles, which the Dutch lack. We do have cabaret, though, and there we have done something interesting. I love the classic British radio and TV comedies for the quality of the writing, the diversity, the great acting. The Dutch excel primarily at painting and trading, and there are a few good writers, poets and composers. But real comedic heights that would be an experience for non-Dutch audiences haven't yet been scaled...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 07:32:28 AM
(I know that I shouldn't be derailing this thread but....!)

The British are a strange lot indeed! Traditionally suspicious of 'foreigners'-you must know the old joke "Fog in the Channel-Continent isolated"-ambivalent about 'belonging' to Europe, so arrogant and 'superior' at times, and yet with a marked capacity to laugh at themselves. I suppose that the French can also laugh at themselves sometimes(?) but classic British comedy-as you say-is indeed wonderful. The theatrical tradition must certainly contribute to that.

Never mind....we didn't produce Rembrandt or van Gogh!!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos's Red Barrel
Post by: karlhenning on June 04, 2008, 07:53:52 AM
If you take out the Scotsmen, you take out the magic.

http://www.youtube.com/v/Es0t50H44IE
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 08:06:20 AM
Yes.......stark staring bonkers, as well!! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 04, 2008, 08:10:18 AM
Quote
RSM  Isn't that funny, sir... I've never come across that phrase before - 'no time to lose'. Forty-two years I've been in the regular army and I've never heard that phrase.

Captain  Well, it's in perfectly common parlance.

RSM  In what, sir?

Captain  Oh never mind... right ... no time to lose.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 09:54:26 AM
I hope he was joking! What was this friend's name? Corporal Frazer?!

 :) I'm impressed...do they have "Dad's Army" on TV in Holland?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 04, 2008, 10:16:39 AM
Mad Belgians are more than welcome  :)

Actually there are some lesser known Belgian composers whose music I greatly admire (I think they're Belgian anyway!)

Devreese (Gothic Symphony, In Memoriam...great works)

Meulemans "Pliny's Fountain" (beautiful work)

Sternefeld (powerful Symphony on Marco Polo)

+ there is my love for the Tintin books, but that's another story!

Good news! And indeed they are all Belgians.
If you want to explore more, try the Etcetera/Klara discs...alas, much more expensive than Naxos.
There's a recent CD with works by Antwerpian Flor Alpaerts ( rougly the same generation as Meulemans -whose works he conducted).
The CD has two big symphonic poems - in a lush Richard Strauss/Debussy vein : Pallieter ( after a popular novel) and the James Ensor' suite ( + several small works).
Peter
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 10:29:04 AM
:) I'm impressed...do they have "Dad's Army" on TV in Holland?

Of course! Most British comedies have been on Dutch TV since the 'sixties (with subtitles - very good for your language skills). I think they even have influenced my writing style (and listening to Radio 4 since 1984 has also been very important). And at the end of the 80s we got BBC 1 and 2 on cable.

Edit: my interest in British comedy is more than average and includes things like Round the Horne, Beyond our Ken et cetera...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 10:31:21 AM
Good news! And indeed they are all Belgians.
If you want to explore more, try the Etcetera/Klara discs...alas, much more expensive than Naxos.
There's a recent CD with works by Antwerpian Flor Alpaerts ( rougly the same generation as Meulemans -whose works he conducted).
The CD has two big symphonic poems - in a lush Richard Strauss/Debussy vein : Pallieter ( after a popular novel) and the James Ensor' suite ( + several small works).
Peter

Peter,

Thanks. I will investigate.

James Ensor is actually my favourite painter! (he really was a mad Belgian, although half English!). I have visited, on several occasions, the wonderfully crazy Ensor House in Ostend, full of masks and skulls etc and I made homage to Ensor's grave when I was in Ostend (in a very beautiful seaside church cemetry). There are some great stories about Ensor. In the war, whilst secretly listening to the BBC he heard the erroneous announcement of his own death. His response was to walk to the statue of himself (that he had insisted was placed in the busiest road in Ostend), and drape a black crape veil round the statue; wonderful story!

I should really be talking about Braga Santos, but never mind!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on June 04, 2008, 10:33:05 AM
This thread is now half as long as the Brahms thread, with 50 posts in the last 7 days. And the Brahms thread had a four-month head start :o
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 10:35:09 AM
This thread is now half as long as the Brahms thread, with 50 posts in the last 7 days. And the Brahms thread had a four-month head start :o

Brahms won the Best Composer poll, so - swings and roundabouts!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 04, 2008, 10:41:00 AM
We should be talking about Braga Santos! Here's a small photograph.

(http://armandapatricio.paginas.sapo.pt/joly2.gif)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 10:45:32 AM
Of course! Most British comedies have been on Dutch TV since the 'sixties (with subtitles - very good for your language skills). I think they even have influenced my writing style (and listening to Radio 4 since 1984 has also been very important). And at the end of the 80s we got BBC 1 and 2 on cable.

Edit: my interest in British comedy is more than average and includes things like Round the Horne, Beyond our Ken et cetera...

I'm amazed at your anglophile taste in BBC radio comedy etc. Coincidentally I was listening, in the car, today to a BBC comedy compilation tape, including some great excerpts from "Round the Horne". Tony Hancock is my own favourite of this era.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 10:57:22 AM
We should be talking about Braga Santos! Here's a small photograph.

(http://armandapatricio.paginas.sapo.pt/joly2.gif)

Thanks for reminding me/us...  :-X
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 04, 2008, 11:03:46 AM
Looks like all the recordings available are orchestral works.  According to a list on Wikipedia, there is a cl/va/pf trio he wrote in 1984 (Aria a tre);  and his very last work was Improviso, cl/pf . . . if we can scare up a source for the music, I'd gladly play these.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 04, 2008, 11:09:11 AM
My second Braga Santos disc was the music for strings, on which I especially like the Variations concertantes (strings and harp) from 1967, and the Concerto for Violin, Cello, Strings & Harp from 1968.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 11:43:57 AM
We should be talking about Braga Santos! Here's a small photograph.

(http://armandapatricio.paginas.sapo.pt/joly2.gif)

Yes, thanks for keeping us on the straight and narrow.

I'm starting to investigate some BS non-symphonic works.  I can strongly recommend the lovely 7 minute Nocturno for Strings. It is like Vaughan Williams and was written when BS was only 20. The Cello Concerto (a late work) is more challenging (one for Karl perhaps).
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 04, 2008, 01:15:51 PM
The Cello Concerto (a late work) is more challenging (one for Karl perhaps).

I am indeed waiting for delivery of this disc, and looking forward to that piece in particular  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on June 04, 2008, 01:56:35 PM

I am planning an expedition to sell ice to the Eskimos next :) :)

Hmmm - well, w/ global warming, not a bad idea!  ;D ;)

But, now I see why this thread is so long, most of it has nothing to do w/ Santos!  :o 8) 

Still looking forward to hear those 'in the mail' CDs (can't remember what I even ordered now?) -  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 04, 2008, 02:10:18 PM
But, now I see why this thread is so long, most of it has nothing to do w/ Santos!  :o 8) 

I just did a check - around 30 of 177 posts are not BS-related (most are concentrated in the last few pages). And now the thread is firmly on the rails again. So - it's not that bad...

Tomorrow I am going to listen to the Second, Third and Fourth symphonies consecutively.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 04, 2008, 02:55:47 PM
Hmmm - well, w/ global warming, not a bad idea!  ;D ;)

But, now I see why this thread is so long, most of it has nothing to do w/ Santos!  :o 8) 

Still looking forward to hear those 'in the mail' CDs (can't remember what I even ordered now?) -  :)

Holds hands up :-[ It does often exasperate me when the contributions to threads veer off into the surreal but hey at the end of the day it's only a bit of harmless fun mid serious discussion!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 04, 2008, 11:00:51 PM
Holds hands up :-[ It does often exasperate me when the contributions to threads veer off into the surreal but hey at the end of the day it's only a bit of harmless fun mid serious discussion!

Absolutely, and I know it's tempting fate but this has been a very good thread. I too am guilty of indulging in inane banter about mad Dutchmen and clogs etc, but I am  firmly back on the rails now. Tonight I hope to listen to my BS "Music for Strings" CD on Marco Polo.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 05, 2008, 01:30:08 AM
Ok - this is positive news. I'll give symphony nr 2 ( at almost 50 mins a BIG work!) a spin tonight...

(Fairly) unknown composers can be inspiring! Keep up the good work.
P.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 05, 2008, 01:36:20 AM
Ok - this is positive news. I'll give symphony nr 2 ( at almost 50 mins a BIG work!) a spin tonight...

(Fairly) unknown composers can be inspiring! Keep up the good work.
P.

Ok, I have said it before but if anyone can resist the big tune in the Adagio of the 2nd then they must indeed have a hard heart! It just bowls me over each time I hear it. But then I suppose I am just a soft sentimentalist at heart :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Thom on June 05, 2008, 02:58:55 AM
But then I suppose I am just a soft sentimentalist at heart

Those are mostly nice people  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 05, 2008, 03:53:32 AM
Still on sale at Amazon.co.uk (for just about GBP 189  ;), but cheaper elsewhere; JPC even used to offer it for 5 Euros, not so long ago) is another Braga Santos disc from the late '90s that I think hasn't been mentioned here, yet.
                                                                                        (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/217PEP4B32L._SL500_AA130_.jpg)

I bought it back in 1999, during my first Braga Santos fever, after having discovered his music via the Portugalsom series (Marco Polo only started theirs a couple of years later). It contains the Staccato brilhante, Divertimento no. 2, Concerto in D and Sinfonietta for - now all available in the Marco Polo series as well (and Cassuto's recordings are generally better too).

But it finishes with another early piece, that shows Braga Santos remarkable talent as a student. The Elegia a Vianna da Motta from 1948 is a heartfelt elegy for his once famous compatriot Vianna da Motta (a concert pianist, Liszt pupil, and friend of Busoni) of quite some substance, taking almost 10 minutes.

It's also availabe in a Portugalsom recording coupled with the Três Esboços Sinfónicos and Variações Sinfónicas Sobre Um Tema Alentejano - but the CD suffers from a very poor recording quality. That said, anyone with an interest in his later style, starting from the early 1960s, should not only try the Sinfonietta for Strings (1963), but even more so the Três Esboços Sinfónicos (Three Symphonic Sketches) from 1961, because this piece really represents the missing link between the early and late Braga Santos.

Perhaps I should post here some of these pieces from long deleted discs?

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 05, 2008, 04:12:24 AM
Just found a 2000 Musicweb review by Rob Barnett of all the (once) available Portugalsom recordings, with the one I mentioned among them:

 http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2000/apr00/santos.htm (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2000/apr00/santos.htm)

                              (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2000/apr00/sansketc.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Thom on June 05, 2008, 04:15:58 AM
Perhaps I should post here some of these pieces from long deleted discs?

That would be nice, Christo! Thanks.

Thom
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 05, 2008, 05:57:36 AM
I would love to hear the Portugalsom recordings of Symphony 3 or 4.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 05, 2008, 07:07:32 AM
I would love to hear the Portugalsom recordings of Symphony 3 or 4.

Great minds think alike...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 05, 2008, 08:04:07 AM
Jezetha, I bought that CD some years ago in a small recordshop in Lisbon. Agreed, the recording is mediocre, but the music is indeed very fine.  Now, if we all write to the Concertgebouw....???

P.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 05, 2008, 08:53:58 AM
Those are mostly nice people  :D

Aaaah :-[ Not for me to say :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 05, 2008, 10:00:02 AM
Great minds think alike...

... as do small ones. But I think - quess -  Peter is referring to the poor quality of the Portugalsom recording of the Fourth, which, however much praise it receives from Rob Barnett, isn't that special and indeed cannot compare with Cassuto's version with his Irish orchestra for Marco Polo. And btw the choral version of the final movement isn't a good idea either.

Portugalsom/Cassuto's Third however, with the LSO, is superb imho.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 05, 2008, 10:53:55 AM


Portugalsom/Cassuto's Third however, with the LSO, is superb imho.

This is the one I especially want to hear.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 05, 2008, 11:07:30 AM
This is the one I especially want to hear.

Exactly - me too! The Third made an immediate impression on me. Having two interpretations would make me very happy.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on June 05, 2008, 11:33:50 AM
... as do small ones. But I think - quess -  Peter is referring to the poor quality of the Portugalsom recording of the Fourth, which, however much praise it receives from Rob Barnett, isn't that special and indeed cannot compare with Cassuto's version with his Irish orchestra for Marco Polo. And btw the choral version of the final movement isn't a good idea either.

Portugalsom/Cassuto's Third however, with the LSO, is superb imho.

That's correct ( idem for the Alentejo vars.) .
I just finished listening to the second  mov.of symph.nr 2....Really lovely - lush & grand...Amazing ,he was only 23 when he wrote this. And he knows how to counter-balance the grandiloquence with sadness.

P.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 05, 2008, 03:16:02 PM
That's correct ( idem for the Alentejo vars.) .
I just finished listening to the second  mov.of symph.nr 2....Really lovely - lush & grand...Amazing ,he was only 23 when he wrote this. And he knows how to counter-balance the grandiloquence with sadness.

P.

"lovely", "lush", "grand", "grandiloquence", "sadness". Yes, all of these words are particularly apt. So glad that you liked it :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on June 28, 2008, 02:28:34 AM
A new convert: me! Bought No.4 and ordered now the rest of Amazon (partners), the Marco polo discs.

#4: - I love the andante most.
- the final movement sounds very british IMO. Reminds me of Holst Planets sometimes.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 28, 2008, 03:35:01 AM
Welcome to our Joly Band of Braga Brothers, Wurstwasser!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Harry on June 28, 2008, 03:53:23 AM
Well I have most of them, so now to find time to play them, O, the choice I have is devastating ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 28, 2008, 10:31:22 AM
As one of the 'so-called Braga Santos experts' (Jezetha), I welcome you to the club too!

I am, at this very moment, greatly enjoying a newly released CD of Symphony No 2 by Braga Santos's teacher, Luis De Freitas Branco which, in places, does sound like the music of Braga Santos.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 28, 2008, 10:35:55 AM
I am, at this very moment, greatly enjoying a newly released CD of Symphony No 2 by Braga Santos's teacher, Luis De Freitas Branco which, in places, does sound like the music of Braga Santos.

You make us all curious! I know about the recent release of the First, by Naxos. Did they, or anyone else, really start with the Second? (Once, they were available on the Portugalsom label, but I only succeeded in finding the First, coupled with the Alentejo Suite no. 2, and never heard one of the others, so far).

O, the choice I have is devastating ;D

But even more so for us!   ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 28, 2008, 12:04:36 PM
You make us all curious! I know about the recent release of the First, by Naxos. Did they, or anyone else, really start with the Second? (Once, they were available on the Portugalsom label, but I only succeeded in finding the First, coupled with the Alentejo Suite no. 2, and never heard one of the others, so far).

But even more so for us!   ;)

Johan,

Here is the link to the CD

Jeffrey

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fernandes-J-Violin-Concerto-Symphony/dp/B000ZOTD4A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1214686945&sr=1-2
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 28, 2008, 12:12:47 PM
For those who are a bit confused: both Christo and myself are called Johan...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on June 28, 2008, 12:28:55 PM
For those who are a bit confused: both Christo and myself are called Johan...

Yes, and In the circumstances I'd suggest that you change your first name to Havergal in order to avoid any possible further confusion  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 28, 2008, 01:00:22 PM
Yes, and In the circumstances I'd suggest that you change your first name to Havergal in order to avoid any possible further confusion  ;D

Havergal Herrenberg has a nice ring to it, hasn't it?! Better than a mere Johan.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on June 28, 2008, 10:58:52 PM
Havergal Herrenberg has a nice ring to it, hasn't it?! Better than a mere Johan.

Make it Havergal Z. Herrenberg. HZH would make a majestic zig-zag sign, and offer the opportunity to change your nick too, into Hazetha, or the rather austere and Basque-looking Aitchzedaitch, ending up with H Forever, probably, in honour of your favourite forum member.  8)

Johan, Here is the link to the CD
Jeffrey
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fernandes-J-Violin-Concerto-Symphony/dp/B000ZOTD4A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1214686945&sr=1-2

Of course! (Banging my head to the stereo). Had seen it before, buf forgotten, since I decided to wait for the new Naxos series. I suppose the First will be out, these days?
                                                                              (http://www.naxos.com/images/cds/570765b.gif)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 28, 2008, 11:06:12 PM
Make it Havergal Z. Herrenberg. HZH would make a majestic zig-zag sign, and offer the opportunity to change your nick too, into Hazetha, or the rather austere and Basque-looking Aitchzedaitch, ending up with H Forever, probably, in honour of your favourite forum member.  8)

I think you have surpassed yourself, Johan.  ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 29, 2008, 03:02:19 AM
The new Naxos version of Freitas Branco's 1st symphony should be released in the UK tomorrow and will(hopefully) be winging its way through the post to me.

I have just ordered the new CD of his 2nd symphony from Amazon at the good price of £6.53. One should, of course, be more patient and wait for Naxos to release it in due course but at that price the Atma disc is irresistable.

Add that disc to the Glazunov Saxophone Concerto and Pfitzner's Cantata "Das dunkle Reich" means that I have ordered 3 CDs through Amazon in the last three days! Oh dear!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 29, 2008, 04:43:12 AM
Many of us have been there, Dundonnell . . . you are not alone.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: johnQpublic on June 29, 2008, 05:32:19 AM
  I have ordered 3 CDs through Amazon in the last three days! Oh dear!

Were you a "good boy" and went through the Amazon link at the top of the page?  ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on June 29, 2008, 07:19:37 AM
Were you a "good boy" and went through the Amazon link at the top of the page?  ;)

Oh...ah....no! I obviously should have done so because it helps GMG does it? I didn't realise....sorry! Will try to remember in future :(
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on June 29, 2008, 08:36:53 AM
Well, posted the two discs below in the 'listening thread' yesterday - my first experience w/ Braga Santos (and Branco) - have now listened to these recordings a number of times, and thoroughly enjoy both discs.  I really like the 'orchestral string works' on the Marco Polo label w/ Cassuto - just some beautiful melodic lines, folk inflections, and gorgeous string writing - it's a winner! Not sure that this link has been provided previously - but a MusicWeb Review HERE (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2002/Aug02/santos_strings.htm) -  :D

The Branco/Santos disc is also thoroughly enjoyable - the 'neglected' Violin Concerto is ravishing and the Andante movement really takes your breath away w/ its melodic lines (of course, the violinist, Alexandre da Costa is just superb throughout the recording); also, love the Braga Santos works on the disc, i.e. Encruzilhada & Divertimento No. 1 - outstanding 10/10 review on ClassicsToday (http://classicstoday.com/review.asp?ReviewNum=9157) -  :)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41JQE5FYS5L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/410MWNP2WJL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 01, 2008, 03:00:17 PM
Link to Musicweb review of the new Naxos CD-

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2008/July08/Freitas_Branco_570785.htm

Sounds good!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 04, 2008, 03:42:47 PM
Link to Musicweb review of the new Naxos CD-

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2008/July08/Freitas_Branco_570785.htm

Sounds good!

And it is!! Freitas Branco's 1st Symphony is a delightful work, full of energy and good tunes. The outer movements are very French in influence with echoes of Franck, Dukas and-sometimes-Alberic Magnard. The slow movement is delectable, very beautiful in a pastoral, Iberian idiom. Certainly makes me look forward to hearing No.2(very shortly!) and the others in due time.

I can't honestly say that Freitas Branco has replaced Braga Santos in my affections but he is clearly a composer of considerable merit and interest.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on July 04, 2008, 08:27:00 PM
I can't honestly say that Freitas Branco has replaced Braga Santos in my affections but he is clearly a composer of considerable merit and interest.

Can't say fairer than that.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 05, 2008, 01:14:36 AM
As I can't bear to be left out of all this ( :'() I am now the happy owner of Freitas-Branco's 1st Symphony on Naxos ( :)). I agree with Colin; what a fine work, especially the lovely slow movement. I can also detect the influence on Braga Santos (whose symphonies on Marco Polo are advertised in the Naxos CD case). I too prefer Braga Santos but this is clearly a composer worth discovering. I can recommend Symphony 2 which I have on the Atma label.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 05, 2008, 03:31:06 AM
As I can't bear to be left out of all this ( :'() I am now the happy owner of Freitas-Branco's 1st Symphony on Naxos ( :)). I agree with Colin; what a fine work, especially the lovely slow movement. I can also detect the influence on Braga Santos (whose symphonies on Marco Polo are advertised in the Naxos CD case). I too prefer Braga Santos but this is clearly a composer worth discovering. I can recommend Symphony 2 which I have on the Atma label.

No.2 arrived this morning :) I shall listen to it later and report back but I notice that the booklet notes say that it differs from No.1 in style to a marked degree.

(Also arrived this morning-Knut Nystedt's Sinfonia del Mare and 'The Burnt Sacrifice'(I had the latter on LP) and Boris Tishchenko's Dante Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2-which I anticipate will not make for easy listening! Goodness knows what my postman thinks delivering all these small parcels to me!)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 05, 2008, 03:35:06 AM
Goodness knows what my postman thinks delivering all these small parcels to me!

If they're not from Holland, you're in the clear.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 05, 2008, 03:41:05 AM
If they're not from Holland, you're in the clear.

 :) :) :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 07, 2008, 01:42:07 PM
Photo of Luis de Freitas Branco (1890-1945):

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 09, 2008, 01:30:21 AM
I'll be downloading Freitas Branco's 2nd symphony today (eMusic/Atma)...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on July 09, 2008, 01:31:24 AM
I'll be downloading Freitas Branco's 2nd symphony today (eMusic/Atma)...

And I plan to visit the toilet.  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 09, 2008, 01:34:27 AM
And I plan to visit the toilet.  :)

Too much information and terribly OT.

 ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 09, 2008, 05:42:37 AM
Just got round to listening to the new Atma version of Luis Freitas Branco's Second Symphony(coupled with the Violin Concerto of Armando Jose Fernandes-Alexandre da Costa(violin) and the Extremadura Symphony Orchestra, Jesus Amigo).

I am, frankly, not sure what to make of it! My first impressions are that it does not move on beyond the 1st in quite the way I was expecting. The 1st certainly sounds more of a mixture of styles-late 19th/early 20th century French together with Iberian sultriness but with a fresh energy which I found captivating. The 2nd uses a Gregorian chant as a repeated motif and there are some passages of real splendour. The Andantino second movement is delightful. But...I think that the symphony is just a little bit too long, it might have benefited from some judicious paring down, and, ultimately, it didn't bowl me over in the way that Freitas Branco's pupil, Braga Santos, does. There are good tunes but nothing as overpowering as in the latter's symphonies, while the orchestration does not seem to me as masterly. Can hear echoes of Respighi but he did it better.

Possibly being unfair? Will need to listen again.

Johan-I look forward to your possibly entirely different conclusion!

Oh..and wasn't particularly taken by the Fernandes Violin Concerto but then I am not a great fan of romantic violin concertos!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 13, 2008, 04:04:02 PM
Jeffrey/Johan-any further comments on Freitas Branco's No.2?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 13, 2008, 08:56:03 PM
Jeffrey/Johan-any further comments on Freitas Branco's No.2?

I'm going to download FB's 2nd today.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on July 13, 2008, 09:49:04 PM
I'll be downloading Freitas Branco's 2nd symphony today (eMusic/Atma)...

I'm going to download FB's 2nd today.

 $:)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 13, 2008, 09:59:27 PM
$:)

Erm... The Gurrelieder intervened.  0:) And Alkan. And Wagner.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 13, 2008, 10:44:02 PM
Jeffrey/Johan-any further comments on Freitas Branco's No.2?

I enjoyed No 2 but I heard it before No 1, which I think is better. I prefer Braga Santos to either but I will continue to collect the Naxos series. I quite liked the Violin concerto but it is not 'desert island' material.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on July 13, 2008, 11:21:23 PM
My first impression is, that some of Freitas Branco's best music lies hidden, perhaps not in his symphonies, but in his symphonic poems. Wikipedia lists four of them, al written in the same period: Antero De Quental (1908), Paraísos Artificais [Artificial Paradises] (1910), Tentações de S. Frei Gil (1911), Vathek (1913).

I own Portugalsom CDs with the first and fourth, and Vathek - based on the story by William Beckford, as Jezetha reminded us already - is quite an interesting piece indeed. Based on an old Moorish theme, it basically presents a series of variations. The booklet gets quite excited about the third variation, a 59-part fugato for strings, seen as the culmination of modern Portuguese music.

I hope to be able to play it again, later today. Rob Barnett, in his famous Musicweb review of all the oop Portugalsom CDs in 2001 (http://www.musicweb.uk.net/classrev/2001/Nov01/Branco.htm), wrote about Vathek:

>> Broadly speaking this magically orchestrated music is in the same territory as Schmitt's Salome, Dukas's La Péri, Rimsky's Sheherazade and Griffes' Pleasure Dome. Raw brass fanfares, violent dances, Pierrot twilights, voluptuous Franckian climaxes (cf Psyche), drizzling doom and birdsong (uncannily similar to Holbrooke's Birds of Rhiannon music - a legend now appropriated by MacMillan), Vathek was in sympathy with Flecker's pilgrims who took the Golden Road to Samarkand for 'lust of knowing what should not be known.' There is a wholly fitting sense of exhaustion in the epilogue. The work is in eight separately tracked segments played contiguously. <<

                        (http://www.musicweb.uk.net/classrev/2001/Nov01/BrancoVathek.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 14, 2008, 01:44:09 AM
I enjoyed No 2 but I heard it before No 1, which I think is better. I prefer Braga Santos to either but I will continue to collect the Naxos series. I quite liked the Violin concerto but it is not 'desert island' material.

Agreed and agreed :) :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 14, 2008, 01:45:40 AM
My first impression is, that some of Freitas Branco's best music lies hidden, perhaps not in his symphonies, but in his symphonic poems. Wikipedia lists four of them, al written in the same period: Antero De Quental (1908), Paraísos Artificais [Artificial Paradises] (1910), Tentações de S. Frei Gil (1911), Vathek (1913).

I own Portugalsom CDs with the first and fourth, and Vathek - based on the story by William Beckford, as Jezetha reminded us already - is quite an interesting piece indeed. Based on an old Moorish theme, it basically presents a series of variations. The booklet gets quite excited about the third variation, a 59-part fugato for strings, seen as the culmination of modern Portuguese music.

I hope to be able to play it again, later today. Rob Barnett, in his famous Musicweb review of all the oop Portugalsom CDs in 2001 (http://www.musicweb.uk.net/classrev/2001/Nov01/Branco.htm), wrote about Vathek:

>> Broadly speaking this magically orchestrated music is in the same territory as Schmitt's Salome, Dukas's La Péri, Rimsky's Sheherazade and Griffes' Pleasure Dome. Raw brass fanfares, violent dances, Pierrot twilights, voluptuous Franckian climaxes (cf Psyche), drizzling doom and birdsong (uncannily similar to Holbrooke's Birds of Rhiannon music - a legend now appropriated by MacMillan), Vathek was in sympathy with Flecker's pilgrims who took the Golden Road to Samarkand for 'lust of knowing what should not be known.' There is a wholly fitting sense of exhaustion in the epilogue. The work is in eight separately tracked segments played contiguously. <<

                        (http://www.musicweb.uk.net/classrev/2001/Nov01/BrancoVathek.jpg)

We must hope then that Naxos decides to couple the remaining symphonies with some of these intriguing sounding symphonic poems!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2008, 12:07:47 PM
Just listened to Freitas Branco's Second Symphony. I'm afraid there isn't much to say about this piece. It doesn't reach for the stars. Stylistically it's firmly 19th century, which isn't an indictment in itself, were it not for the fact that there is nothing of the visionary or passionate side of the 19th century either... It's all rather bland, 'national school' and innocent. I spent an agreeable 40 or so minutes with it, but I don't think I'll be panting for a second listen very soon.

Braga Santos is, on the evidence of this work at least, a vastly superior composer.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on July 14, 2008, 12:36:44 PM
Just listened to Freitas Branco's Second Symphony. I'm afraid there isn't much to say about this piece. It doesn't reach for the stars. Stylistically it's firmly 19th century, which isn't an indictment in itself, were it not for the fact that there is nothing of the visionary or passionate side of the 19th century either... It's all rather bland, 'national school' and innocent. I spent an agreeable 40 or so minutes with it, but I don't think I'll be panting for a second listen very soon.

Braga Santos is, on the evidence of this work at least, a vastly superior composer.

Well you have been a little harsher than I was, Johan, but fundamentally I agree with you :)

I suspect that you have not yet heard No.1 however? I was pleased to learn that Jeffrey agreed with me that it is better than No.2. Don't let your reaction to the Second put you off giving the (cheap) Naxos recording of the First a try. Ok, it is a 19th century work too but with a fresher energy and a most beautiful slow movement(though not the equal of any by Braga Santos!)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2008, 12:50:48 PM
Well you have been a little harsher than I was, Johan, but fundamentally I agree with you :)

I suspect that you have not yet heard No.1 however? I was pleased to learn that Jeffrey agreed with me that it is better than No.2. Don't let your reaction to the Second put you off giving the (cheap) Naxos recording of the First a try. Ok, it is a 19th century work too but with a fresher energy and a most beautiful slow movement(though not the equal of any by Braga Santos!)

Of course I'll give the First a listen (when it's downloadable from eMusic).  0:)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on July 14, 2008, 09:46:35 PM
Of course I'll give the First a listen (when it's downloadable from eMusic).  0:)

Duly noted.  $:)

And I agree about the Andante of the First, as I've probably reported here before. Indeed, the First is a lovely piece that helps `explain' Braga Santos' early style a lot - at least the first two movements do. The rather explosive symphonic poem Vathek from 1913 reminded me too, listening to it gain yesterday, that there are more sides to Freitas Branco. So, I plan to give all symphonies a try anyhow. Btw: there are five of them, the last one a choral symphony `Sinfonia do Trabalho' frrom 1954 that isn't mentioned in the Wikipedia article (and was perhaps never performed?).

See for some more detail: http://www.amsc.com.pt/musica/compositores/luisfb.htm

BTW, I now read there that the Second represents a start in a new, neoclassicist direction (`orientação diferente, virada a um neoclassicismo'). Could it be that that's what you've been hearing, Jezetha?

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on July 22, 2008, 12:13:26 AM
Beside my current Henry Purcell listening experience and due to lack of time, I must say I got stuck with Braga Santos Symphony No.4 very much. Also, because I can't stop listening to the #4 Andante, epic stuff.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 22, 2008, 12:45:21 AM
BTW, I now read there that the Second represents a start in a new, neoclassicist direction (`orientação diferente, virada a um neoclassicismo'). Could it be that that's what you've been hearing, Jezetha?

You won't be reading this till after you have returned from Crete, but let's answer the question: what I hear is no neoclassicism Stravinsky-style, but a stylistic return to the 19th century in its nationalist school manifestation, now on a Portuguese basis. But not in the way a Bartók or Enescu reinvent this.

Beside my current Henry Purcell listening experience and due to lack of time, I must say I got stuck with Braga Santos Symphony No.4 very much. Also, because I can't stop listening to the #4 Andante, epic stuff.

Excellent!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on August 09, 2008, 06:05:58 AM
Presently listening to BS's 4th again (Cassuto), which I liked enough on first hearing to follow up with an order for the 2nd (also Cassuto).  That was several weeks ago and I just received notice yesterday that it has finally shipped from the distribution center.   As for the 4th, although it's a trifle more bombastic than I prefer, I like it more each time I hear it, and I like his use of color throughout.  In fact, I have it on in the background at the moment and it keeps calling to me, requesting my full attention.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 09, 2008, 12:10:57 PM
I thought that I would revive our old friend despite a warning in red that 'this topic has not been posted in for at least 120 days.' Also, rather disconcertingly when I searched for JBS (as we so-called Braga Santos experts call him) I received a zero reply with a message saying' perhaps you were looking for brag snots'. But then I remembered Lethe's excellent list and, sure enough, there he was - the solitary Portuguese entry.

Anyway, I have just been listening to the wonderfully inspiriting conclusion of Symphony No 3 and thought that I would give it a plug (together with Symphony No 4) for anyone who has not yet discovered him.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 09, 2008, 12:19:29 PM
There are some people out there who never listen to classical music who have now heard of Braga Santos ;D  I tell all my friends about him ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 09, 2008, 12:25:38 PM
There are some people out there who never listen to classical music who have now heard of Braga Santos ;D  I tell all my friends about him ;D ;D

Me too  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 09, 2008, 12:30:05 PM
Good that you wipe the dust from this JBS thread, Jeffrey! I'm even thinking of yet another good reason and recent development:

You won't be reading this till after you have returned from Crete, but let's answer the question: what I hear is no neoclassicism Stravinsky-style, but a stylistic return to the 19th century in its nationalist school manifestation, now on a Portuguese basis. But not in the way a Bartók or Enescu reinvent this.

Next Month, Naxos is going to release Cassuto's new recording, again with the Irish, the best orchestra to his disposal in this series IMHO, of Luís de Freitas Branco's Second Symphony - here (above) critically reviewed by Jezetha. It is coupled with one of Luís de Freitas Branco's finest orchestral achievements: Os paraisos artificiais (Artificial Paradises), and another tone poem, but one I don't know: Depois de uma leitura de Guerra Junqueiro (After a reading of Guerra Junqueiro).

See: http://www.naxos.com/upcomingreleases.asp. I look forward to the occasion!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 09, 2008, 01:28:07 PM
Although I have the Freitas Branco symphony already(my impatience!) I shall buy this new disc for the tone poems :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on December 09, 2008, 01:41:29 PM
Nothing to add. I just wanted to make the circle of so-called BSEs complete.  ;D

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on December 09, 2008, 01:43:48 PM
Oh, fine.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on December 09, 2008, 02:52:43 PM
BSE!

I'm looking forward to the Freitas/Naxos disc!

But for the moment :
If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumber'd here
While these visions did appear.
And this weak and idle theme,
No more yielding but a dream,
Gentles, do not reprehend:
if you pardon, we will mend:
And, as I am an honest Puck,
If we have unearned luck
Now to 'scape the serpent's tongue,
We will make amends ere long;
Else the Puck a liar call;
So, good night unto you all.Give me your hands, if we be friends,
And Robin shall restore amends.

P.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on December 09, 2008, 05:47:38 PM
What's BSE? I feel like I qualify but I want to know what the E stands for.  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on December 09, 2008, 06:03:52 PM
Enthusiasts, innit?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 09, 2008, 06:08:58 PM
What's BSE? I feel like I qualify but I want to know what the E stands for.  ;D

BSE or " Mad Cow Disease" is properly known as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy. It is a fatal neurodegenerative disease in cattle, causing a spongy degeneration in the brain and spinal cord. In Britain more than 179,000 cattle have been infected and around 4.4 million slaughtered during the eradication process. The...........

or sorry...wrong thread! ;D

BSE is a popular name for a small group of entirely self-appointed "Braga Santos Experts". These persons are very great admirers of the music of the Portugese composer, Joly Braga Santos(1924-1988). Originating with a few of the members of the online GMG Classical Music Forum. this group has adopted a proselytizing approach to the music of Braga Santos and is clearly anxious to recruit as many new members as possible in order to expand beyond their current base, mainly in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.

Further information can be obtained..........

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on December 09, 2008, 11:15:05 PM
Our Deputy Chairman puts it very well.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on December 09, 2008, 11:38:47 PM
Our Deputy Chairman puts it very well.

 ;) ;)

Shall we all meet in Portugal, next summer? and talk about Braga while nipping dry sherry ?

Peter
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 10, 2008, 12:32:11 AM
;) ;)

Shall we all meet in Portugal, next summer? and talk about Braga while nipping dry sherry ?

Peter

Sherry ? ? ? :-X In Portugal? That's like ordering for Sauerkraut (choucroute) in France.  ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: The new erato on December 10, 2008, 01:13:59 AM
That's like ordering for Sauerkraut (choucroute) in France.  ;)
I do it in Alsace all the time.....
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 10, 2008, 01:25:51 AM
I do it in Alsace all the time.....

Me too! (Otherwise I wouldn't have learned the word Choucroute  ;) ). But do you really consider the Alsace French?  ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 10, 2008, 01:55:08 AM
In point of fact the Dutch BSEs only drink bottled custard, delivered by the milkman. The Scottish one drinks whisky (of course) but I have a sophisticated taste for vintage wines (Co-Op Special Reserve 2008). Now, where's that Braga Santos CD?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on December 10, 2008, 02:08:41 AM
In point of fact the Dutch BSEs only drink bottled custard, delivered by the milkman. The Scottish one drinks whisky (of course) but I have a sophisticated taste for vintage wines (Co-Op Special Reserve 2008). Now, where's that Braga Santos CD?

 ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on December 10, 2008, 03:03:55 AM
Sherry ? ? ? :-X In Portugal? That's like ordering for Sauerkraut (choucroute) in France.  ;)

Cool sherry and Portugal go well together! I'll take a porto after the choucroute à l'Alsacienne.
P.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on December 10, 2008, 05:35:17 AM
Hey. What's wrong about Sauerkraut with Eisbein? Finest teutonic cuisine :) Whine? Sherry? What's this supposed to be? Pah! A good bottle of Frankenheim Altbier!

(http://www.erbsenluder.de/images/eisbeinmitsauerkraut.jpg)

I admit, Eisbein looks a bit like those pictures over at liveleak.net ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 10, 2008, 06:02:27 AM
In point of fact the Dutch BSEs only drink bottled custard, delivered by the milkman. The Scottish one drinks whisky (of course) but I have a sophisticated taste for vintage wines (Co-Op Special Reserve 2008). Now, where's that Braga Santos CD?

By sheer coincidence, Co-Op Special Reserve is my favourite, too. I'm looking forward to its 2009 embottlement, a vintage year as never before! And yes: we hve them as a six-pack from the milkman. Who's offering them as 'Grande Crue Délire'.  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 10, 2008, 07:00:37 AM
In point of fact the Dutch BSEs only drink bottled custard, delivered by the milkman. The Scottish one drinks whisky (of course) but I have a sophisticated taste for vintage wines (Co-Op Special Reserve 2008). Now, where's that Braga Santos CD?

I don't drink whisky, sob, sob :( I only drink "the finest wines available to humanity"(to quote Withnail)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: jowcol on December 11, 2008, 04:51:57 PM
 I'm coming in late, but one of the greatest things about this forum was getting turned onto JBS!  The first four symphonies are fantastic! I wouldn't know where to begin between the colorful orchestration, rhythmic vitality, outstanding melodies and structure.  It was sort of like finding out the Moeran wrote four more symphonies!  These rank with Orthel's third as my best discoveries of the year-- in any genre.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 11, 2008, 05:36:39 PM
I am very delighted to read how much you enjoy Braga Santos ;D I was playing the slow movement of No.2 to a non-classical friend of mine last night. He was absolutely amazed to hear that BS was only 23 years old when he wrote that music. What a gift to write such a melody so young :)

And Orthel too! Excellent :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: jowcol on December 11, 2008, 05:55:07 PM
Just a quick note on the lovely second movement of the 4th.  The descending theme reminds me a lot of the Brazillian Jazz guitarist's Canto de Ossanha.  (Which the acoustic Guitarist John Fahey adapted as "Let Go" on his album of the same name.)  I wonder if there is some sort of Portuguese folk tune or something both were drawing from.  Anyone, that movement is sublime.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 12, 2008, 02:07:01 AM
By sheer coincidence, Co-Op Special Reserve is my favourite, too. I'm looking forward to its 2009 embottlement, a vintage year as never before! And yes: we hve them as a six-pack from the milkman. Who's offering them as 'Grande Crue Délire'.  :)

Well, as we are connoisseurs of fine music it is hardly surprising that we also have a sophisticated taste for fine wines too  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on December 12, 2008, 04:54:15 AM
By sheer coincidence, Co-Op Special Reserve is my favourite, too. I'm looking forward to its 2009 embottlement, a vintage year as never before! And yes: we hve them as a six-pack from the milkman. Who's offering them as 'Grande Crue Délire'.  :)

Christo, I'm a bit confused....Une crue/la crue = hoge waterstand / water level       les crus ( = le cru) de Bourgogne,Alsace....: Cru is a French wine term which means "growth place". More specifically, cru is often used to indicate a specifically named growth place

Grand cru Délire : OK  Grande crue Délire : ????or pun?

Peter
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 12, 2008, 05:01:27 AM
... or pun?

 ;) ;) 8)


(My French is worse than yours, but not that bad)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on December 12, 2008, 06:00:18 AM
 :)  0:)

C'est pas grave. My French is quite rusty...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on December 12, 2008, 11:13:09 AM
(#4/2)
Anyone, that movement is sublime.
Yeah, it stands like a rock in that symphony, epic and monumental.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 07, 2009, 03:15:42 PM
I have not yet had time to listen to the new Naxos version of the Freitas Branco 2nd Symphony conducted by Alvaro Cassuto but I have just listened to the other two works on this disc and am staggered at how good they are!

There must be something about the air in Portugal to produce such precocious composers as Freitas Branco and Braga Santos! The Fantasy 'After a reading of Guerra Junqueiro' was written when Freitas Branco was only 19 but is a resplendent, gloriously Straussian piece with magnificent writing for the brass and gorgeous, grandiose climaxes. 'Artificial Paradises' was written only a year later(in 1910) but is an equally rich, impressionist work of quite astonishing maturity.

I was somewhat underwhelmed by the Freitas Branco 2nd Symphony in the recently issued Atma version but will listen to it again in this new Cassuto version. On the basis however of these two wonderful short tone poems it is clear that the composer did have a prodigeous talent :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 07, 2009, 03:26:57 PM
I have re-read Christo's post (on page 12) of this thread about the other tone poems by Freitas Branco and can't wait to hear them-hopefully coupled by Naxos with Symphonies 3 and 4 :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 07, 2009, 03:49:00 PM
How weird! I was reading this famous old thread earlier this evening and here it is back again  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 07, 2009, 03:50:31 PM
How weird! I was reading this famous old thread earlier this evening and here it is back again  :)

Can't keep a good thread down ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 08, 2009, 05:25:11 AM
Can't keep a good thread down ;D ;D

BSEs are always on duty keeping this thread alive...  ;)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on January 08, 2009, 05:32:54 AM
 :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 08, 2009, 07:03:10 AM
I am listening again to Freitas Branco's 'After a reading of Guerra Junqueiro". Simply wonderful!! Absolutely glorious music :) Ok...it is heavily influenced by the Richard Strauss of Don Juan and Till Eulenspiegel(which might put Jeffrey off?) but what swaggering orchestral mastery for a 19 year old :)

Worth buying the cd for this alone! BSEs and others should love it  ;D ;D

And..if you are a Debussyian or Delian you will love 'Artificial Paradises' too. I am neither really but it IS an extremely fine piece of lush, impressionist tone painting. There is a marvellous passage in the work too which reminds me of the Khachaturian of 'Spartacus' except that this was written in 1910!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 08, 2009, 07:26:20 AM
I am listening again to Freitas Branco's 'After a reading of Guerra Junqueiro". Simply wonderful!! Absolutely glorious music :) Ok...it is heavily influenced by the Richard Strauss of Don Juan and Till Eulenspiegel(which might put Jeffrey off?) but what swaggering orchestral mastery for a 19 year old :)

Worth buying the cd for this alone! BSEs and others should love it  ;D ;D

And..if you are a Debussyian or Delian you will love 'Artificial Paradises' too. I am neither really but it IS an extremely fine piece of lush, impressionist tone painting. There is a marvellous passage in the work too which reminds me of the Khachaturian of 'Spartacus' except that this was written in 1910!


[makes mental note]
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 08, 2009, 07:58:48 AM
I am listening again to Freitas Branco's 'After a reading of Guerra Junqueiro". Simply wonderful!! Absolutely glorious music :) Ok...it is heavily influenced by the Richard Strauss of Don Juan and Till Eulenspiegel(which might put Jeffrey off?) but what swaggering orchestral mastery for a 19 year old :)

Worth buying the cd for this alone! BSEs and others should love it  ;D ;D

And..if you are a Debussyian or Delian you will love 'Artificial Paradises' too. I am neither really but it IS an extremely fine piece of lush, impressionist tone painting. There is a marvellous passage in the work too which reminds me of the Khachaturian of 'Spartacus' except that this was written in 1910!

Right, I have just ordered this CD and will be holding you personally responsible if it sounds like 'Ein Heldenleben'  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on January 08, 2009, 08:09:18 AM
Right, I have just ordered this CD and will be holding you personally responsible if it sounds like 'Ein Heldenleben'  ;D

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 08, 2009, 08:24:35 AM


excellent Karl  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 08, 2009, 08:29:37 AM
Right, I have just ordered this CD and will be holding you personally responsible if it sounds like 'Ein Heldenleben'  ;D

No...nothing like 'Ein Heldenleben' ;D

And if it did no doubt your 'scream' will be heard from Rotherfield as far as Perth ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on January 08, 2009, 08:30:22 AM
excellent Karl  ;D

[ With apologies to Edvard Christianovich ]
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 08, 2009, 08:41:31 AM
[ With apologies to Edvard Christianovich ]

Eeeeekkkk!!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on January 08, 2009, 08:52:01 AM
 ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brian on January 08, 2009, 02:39:37 PM
[ With apologies to Edvard Christianovich ]
Would that be Edvard Munchopovich or Munchakovich?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on January 08, 2009, 05:16:16 PM
Please don't encourage him, Brian ::)

It is enough to put up with this mild form of Bostonian eccentricity in 'What are you listening to?' without him exporting it into these more rarified circles :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on January 09, 2009, 05:34:11 AM
I'm feeling the love!

Back on topic . . . I'd be keen to do a re-survey of my Braga Santos collection, only . . . I've got to let this Maksim Dmitriyevich / Kirill Petrovich parallel survey run its course!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 03, 2009, 06:30:25 AM
Back on topic . . . I'd be keen to do a re-survey of my Braga Santos collection. . .

Very much enjoying the Cello Concerto/Staccato brilhante disc!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on June 12, 2009, 06:07:52 AM
TTT (it's lonely work, but . . . .)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 14, 2009, 02:55:09 PM
I have just tracked down (on American Amazon site) the CD below, which I am very curious to hear. It is my favourite BS symphony, along with No 3.  Rob Barnett on the Musicweb was very enthusiastic about it (and I am interested to hear it complete with chorus - as with Miaskovsky's 6th Symphony there is an optional chorus at the end). Trawling back through all 15 pages of this thread I see that Christo regards the Marco Polo version as far better - but I like this symphony so much I am sure that I will enjoy a different take on it. Now I need to track down the Portugalsom LSO performance of Symphony No 3!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2009, 11:02:05 PM
I have just tracked down (on American Amazon site) the CD below, which I am very curious to hear. It is my favourite BS symphony, along with No 3.  Rob Barnett on the Musicweb was very enthusiastic about it (and I am interested to hear it complete with chorus - as with Miaskovsky's 6th Symphony there is an optional chorus at the end). Trawling back through all 15 pages of this thread I see that Christo regards the Marco Polo version as far better - but I like this symphony so much I am sure that I will enjoy a different take on it. Now I need to track down the Portugalsom LSO performance of Symphony No 3!

Hi, Jeffrey! In an email to me Christo blasted the "Rumanian choir of castrati"... So there's the reason for his preference!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 15, 2009, 08:31:30 AM
Hi, Jeffrey! In an email to me Christo blasted the "Rumanian choir of castrati"... So there's the reason for his preference!

Hi Johan, I can't wait to hear them!


Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2009, 02:46:12 PM
Hi Johan, I can't wait to hear them!

And I can't wait to hear your verdict...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 28, 2009, 01:26:54 AM
I have now received and listened, several times, to the Portugalsom Strauss recording of BS Symphony No 4 (Silva Pereira conducting the Roumanian Radio and TV SO and 'George Enescu Choir') - and what an interesting experience.  The performance is quite different to that of Alvaro Cassuto with the NSO of Ireland on Marco Polo. For one thing it is considerably shorter (47'31 as opposed to 53'05 on Marco Polo). This gave the Symphony a greater sense of urgency than the Cassuto performance and there was a stronger rhythmic drive throughout the work.  The wonderful tune which appears helfway through the second movement was, paradoxically, give a very expansive treatment, which reminded me of the great tune at the end of the first movement of Vaughan Williams's 6th Symphony. These are the virtues of the performance.

On the debit side, the recording is a little 'boxed-in' - I noticed this more in the first movement - but it was not a problem.. The Marco Polo recording is more expansive with greater depth.  Having said this the Portugalsom CD allowed me to hear more percussion and brass.  But basically, all goes very well - until the sudden appearance of the 'George Enescu Choir' in the last movement, singing a 'Hymn to Youth'. This, to me, doesn't seem to work at all and is the chief drawback in this version.  Cassuto on Marco Polo wisely dispenses with the optional chorus at the end, as a consequence of which, his version is the one to go for (there is no real choice anyway as the Portugalsom recordings have more or less disappeared). Also the Marco Polo CD has an excellent coupling - the Symphonic Variations.  In a sense the business with the chorus struck me as the opposite experience to that which occurrs at the end of Miaskovsky's epic 6th Symphony - there, the optional intones a deeply moving end to the work (Svetlanov's recording on Olympia/Warner box set dispenses with the chorus, probably for financial reasons, and this detracts from what is otherwise an excellent performance - I am so much looking forward to hearing this work in London next April).

But, back to Braga Santos - I am delighted to have tracked down the Portugalsom recording for the reasons stated above but, the Marco Polo version is the one to have!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 28, 2009, 01:32:11 AM
Sorry, my clever attempt to paste the two CD covers went horribly wrong  ::)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Guido on September 17, 2009, 04:23:24 AM
Hmm... I've just tried Symphonies Nos. 1, 2 and 4. Lot's of lovely stuff moment to moment, but I find his music deeply unsatisfying - fast movements tend to be very slow moving harmonically and rely on interesting rhythmic features and catchy tunes to maintain interest - for me they don't. The slow movements are sort of lacking in argument or direction - no real sense of tension/release/arrival etc. In this it's like film music (not bad on it's own, but I'm not sure I can take it in such large expanses!). I thought I'd like him more given how much praise he seems to get here from people whose musical tastes is similar to mine, but I'm not sure he's for me.

Maybe I'm missing something.  ???

(I do really like the Nocturne and Staccato Brilliante which are both charming and lovely)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on September 17, 2009, 09:53:19 AM
Hmm... I've just tried Symphonies Nos. 1, 2 and 4. Lot's of lovely stuff moment to moment, but I find his music deeply unsatisfying - fast movements tend to be very slow moving harmonically and rely on interesting rhythmic features and catchy tunes to maintain interest - for me they don't. The slow movements are sort of lacking in argument or direction - no real sense of tension/release/arrival etc. In this it's like film music (not bad on it's own, but I'm not sure I can take it in such large expanses!). I thought I'd like him more given how much praise he seems to get here from people whose musical tastes is similar to mine, but I'm not sure he's for me.

Maybe I'm missing something.  ???

(I do really like the Nocturne and Staccato Brilliante which are both charming and lovely)

Hm, it's a long time ago I listened to Braga Santos. When I find the time, I'll revisit the symphonies, Guido, and see what I am hearing now.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 08, 2009, 12:42:58 AM
Thanks to Carlos I now have a recording of the Portugalsom version of Braga Santos Symphony No 3 with Alvaro Cassuto conducting the London Symphony Orchestra. Johan (Christo) is right - this is an even greater than the fine one on Marco Polo (same conductor but different orchestra). The Symphony comes across more powerfully and there is more eloquence in the lyrical passages. The opening of the last movement reminded me of Rimsky Korsakov's 'Russian Easter Festival Overture' - one of the very first pieces of classical music that I liked. Cassuto's LSO recording of Braga Santos's Third symphony has a more expansive and epic quality to it than the later recording. Now it definitely ranks with Symphony No 4 as my very favourite JBS works and in fact one of the great 20th century symphonies.

I am very pleased that a London based orchestra played the music of this great, neglected composer so eloquently. This performance needs to be back in circulation.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on November 08, 2009, 12:56:32 AM
Thanks to Carlos I now have a recording of the Portugalsom version of Braga Santos Symphony No 3 with Alvaro Cassuto conducting the London Symphony Orchestra. Johan (Christo) is right - this is an even greater than the fine one on Marco Polo (same conductor but different orchestra). The Symphony comes across more powerfully and there is more eloquence in the lyrical passages. The opening of the last movement reminded me of Rimsky Korsakov's 'Russian Easter Festival Overture' - one of the very first pieces of classical music that I liked. Cassuto's LSO recording of Braga Santos's Third symphony has a more expansive and epic quality to it than the later recording. Now it definitely ranks with Symphony No 4 as my very favourite JBS works and in fact one of the great 20th century symphonies.

I am very pleased that a London based orchestra played the music of this great, neglected composer so eloquently. This performance needs to be back in circulation.

Hi Jeffrey, good news! And a very good sunday morning too! Hope to be playing this version too, later today. (And one day, after I'm settled here and I find out again how to do it technically, I hope to send you some of the promised copied cds as well ;-)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 08, 2009, 01:06:13 AM
Hi Jeffrey, good news! And a very good sunday morning too! Hope to be playing this version too, later today. (And one day, after I'm settled here and I find out again how to do it technically, I hope to send you some of the promised copied cds as well ;-)


Good morning Johan!  :)

And very best wishes for your new home. I guess that you needed a bigger place, with many rooms, to accomodate your (smuggled-in) CD collection  ;D.

No rush for the copies. The Diepenbrock you very kindly gave me has given me much pleasure (espec. the 'Marysas' piece - not sure about spellings as CD not to hand).

Very best wishes

Jeffrey
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 08, 2009, 01:44:54 AM
Johan (Jezetha version  ;D) mentioned echoes of Respighi in the music of Braga Santos and this was made very clear to me today, listening to the very moving climax, which begins about two minutes into the last movement of the Third Symphony - a very Respighian moment and perhaps my favourite section of the Symphony.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: The new erato on November 08, 2009, 07:10:25 AM
Thanks to Carlos I now have a recording of the Portugalsom version of Braga Santos Symphony No 3 with Alvaro Cassuto conducting the London Symphony Orchestra.
Any hints of where to buy Portugalsom? My usual dealer came up blanks.....

And yeah, I forgot to mention the bank account.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 08, 2009, 09:17:37 AM
Any hints of where to buy Portugalsom? My usual dealer came up blanks.....

And yeah, I forgot to mention the bank account.

Sadly the company seems to have disappeared. I have only found second hand copies on Amazon (usually the US one) - they appear from time to time but can be rather expensive (but not always). Otherwise  kind members of GMG have done copies for me.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Guido on November 08, 2009, 03:14:58 PM
The symphonies are on Spotify.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on June 30, 2010, 12:30:40 PM
Hello, vandermolen! I met up with Christo a few weeks ago (thanks to this forum we renewed our acquaintance!) and he said that Braga Santos is great and, IIRC, that you recommended Braga Santos to him... Since then I listened to some clips, and yes - it's my cup of tea alright! (Christo also played me Tubin's Sixth, which was another ear-opener.)

It shouldn't take much to open your ears since you enjoy Havergal Brian's music. Such an inventive composer and a tough nut to crack.
 
Anyway, Braga Santos is fantasic. I own all of the Marco Polo recordings and have enjoyed them immensely.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 01, 2010, 05:14:37 AM
It shouldn't take much to open your ears since you enjoy Havergal Brian's music. Such an inventive composer and a tough nut to crack.
 
Anyway, Braga Santos is fantasic. I own all of the Marco Polo recordings and have enjoyed them immensely.

Which is your favourite?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on July 01, 2010, 07:36:29 AM
Which is your favourite?

This recording:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41ZpjfyLL5L._SL500_AA300_.jpg)
 
As I mentioned, I think in another thread, I consider "Symphony No. 4" Braga Santos' masterpiece. The "Symphonic Variations" is also a great work.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 01, 2010, 08:25:58 AM
This recording:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41ZpjfyLL5L._SL500_AA300_.jpg)
 
As I mentioned, I think in another thread, I consider "Symphony No. 4" Braga Santos' masterpiece. The "Symphonic Variations" is also a great work.

Me too  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on July 05, 2010, 10:52:21 AM
Me too  :)
Please add me as well :) In the Andante, the theme between 5:40 - 8:20 makes me just going crazy. I can't resist singing out LOUUUUD. To me the most beautiful music which has ever been written, and this is not an exaggeration. [EDIT: It's even better. Period] Especially I love the (Question: Wagner?) tubes as in 6:30..
And then, brutality follows, a kind of Ork invasion :D.

BTW, wife+my music works like this. It's a pretty random thing:

[wife enters room @ Andante 06:00] "Oh, quite beautiful music."
[wife enters room @ Andante 10:00] "Your music makes me sick."

My wife says she loves Classical music. Her understanding of ideal classical music is that it must consist of Butterflies, Flutes and Spring. "Life is too short for the such stuff" she tends to say. My understanding of things is, you need to walk through the deepest valleys in order to even more enjoy the highest mountain peeks. Ok I bore you...
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: jowcol on July 06, 2010, 01:09:56 AM
4 is so good, but I love the first 4 so much.  (I'd rank them 4, 2, 1, 3, but I'd change on any given day).

My not liking the 5th and 6th reasons have nothing to do with lack of musicianship, but just a very selfish  wish that he would do more of his lyrical writing. 
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 06, 2010, 03:03:09 AM
Please add me as well :) In the Andante, the theme between 5:40 - 8:20 makes me just going crazy. I can't resist singing out LOUUUUD. To me the most beautiful music which has ever been written, and this is not an exaggeration. [EDIT: It's even better. Period] Especially I love the (Question: Wagner?) tubes as in 6:30..
And then, brutality follows, a kind of Ork invasion :D.

BTW, wife+my music works like this. It's a pretty random thing:

[wife enters room @ Andante 06:00] "Oh, quite beautiful music."
[wife enters room @ Andante 10:00] "Your music makes me sick."

My wife says she loves Classical music. Her understanding of ideal classical music is that it must consist of Butterflies, Flutes and Spring. "Life is too short for the such stuff" she tends to say. My understanding of things is, you need to walk through the deepest valleys in order to even more enjoy the highest mountain peeks. Ok I bore you...


Very occasionally my wife says that she likes the music I play but, sadly, the usual response from her and my daughter is ' MUST WE LISTEN TO THIS NOISE?'
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on July 06, 2010, 03:05:29 AM
Oh, what they'd say if they overheard much of the music I play . . . ; )
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on July 06, 2010, 06:44:58 AM
Oh, what they'd say if they overheard much of the music I play . . . ; )
Play or consume? So, you're on the dark side of teh clarinets?
Play the Sibelius En Saga clarinet outro 24/7 and everything will be fine.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on July 06, 2010, 07:26:32 AM
Play or consume?

Both readings.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on July 06, 2010, 02:14:57 PM

Very occasionally my wife says that she likes the music I play but, sadly, the usual response from her and my daughter is ' MUST WE LISTEN TO THIS NOISE?'

What sounds like noise to someone else sounds like the heavens crashing down upon you to somebody else. I like to think of this old adage: "One man's junk is another man's treasure."
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: one_o_six on July 29, 2010, 03:09:41 AM
Hi,

I've picked this old thread because I couldn't resist.
Please forgive the intromission, and also my limited English.
I'm just a lurker since some time, because I just don't have enough time to participate in the forum (actually; he should be working right now, instead of posting), and had thus gave up doing it rather early.
Anyway, I do check the notifications I receive by mail, concerning the very few topics I took part (perhaps only «what are you listening to»). Clicking here and there, I noticed some Braga Santos references, and couldn't resist.
I've succeeded in skipping most of my favorite composers mentions, but this case is a peculiar one, because... Well, how can I say it?

I've always been a fan of Symphonies 4th & 5th, although rather different. The 4th has a special charm, and I had the happiness (it's the right word) of having listened to it, not far ago.
Braga Santos music isn't heard much these days, although he composed several small pieces, in order to fit live performances. For example, I've heard Alvaro Cassuto conducting Staccato Brilhante in the very ending of a concert. Maestro Cassuto said he asked the composer a specific piece of encores, and Staccato Brilhante was the issue.
But what I want to tell you is about the 4th Symphony. No need to say I'm familiar with the two known recordings, by Cassuto and Silva Pereira. As you seem to know, the later is somehow compromised by the choir, which, IMO, just failed. It may be a very good choir, but, although similarities between Romanian and Portuguese languages, the sibilance itself ruins the singing, not to say more. Words are imperceptible for a Portuguese, which is enough to be said.
OTOH, the Cassuto recording is overall OK (and has a much better sound).

Anyway, I was incredibly lucky, for attending a live performance of the 4th, in February 2008.
I have also attended a 3rd Symphony later (October 2008), by the same performers, but the 4th was simply magic.
As you surely know (and better than me), live classical music is another world, compared to recordings. Large symphonies are perhaps the best example, Mahler and Bruckner are well known cases.
Gulbenkian Orchestra director Lawrence Foster conducted the 4th in the Gulbenkian hall, in the non-sung version, although the Gulbenkian Foundation has a well-known choir.
(http://ialmcongress2009.inml.mj.pt/images/Gulbenkian.jpg) (http://www.gulbenkian.pt/media/files/agenda/orquestra.jpg)(http://www.musica.gulbenkian.pt/coro/photos/coro_gulbenkian_01.jpg)
The performance went rather well. I would have loved to hear Alvaro Cassuto's opinion, given he was very close to the conductor (and supposedly better conductor of Braga Santos' works than Silva Pereira). By the end, Foster took the printed score on his hands, above his head. For me he meant the applauses should be addressed to the music, which I totally agreed. 
(http://galerie.liternet.ro/albume/enescu_2003/Lawrence_Foster.sized.jpg)
I just regret most Gulbenkian concerts aren't recorded and commercially edited. I'm sure that performance would stand the comparison to Cassuto's.
If you've heard the 4th thru a good sound system with big loudspeakers you already may like the dynamics, but in live form it gets another dimension. As most of you know (I've read a few posts here...), there's a lot of silence, a lot of rhythm (percussion), the whole work is rather varied. In the hall I was almost paralyzed, with suspense. Although knowing the work rather well, I was always expecting what would come next, almost with anxiety.
(http://www.wdr3.de/fileadmin/user_upload/Sendungen/TonArt/2008/Beitragsbilder/LawrenceFoster.jpg)
By the end, a French couple, realizing I was familiar with the work, asked me about it, they'd never heard of it. We spoke a few. They said it was a pleasant surprise. They wouldn't imagine Portuguese music like that. I told them about the context and so on, but wonder if they've ever bought a recording though.

Well, I must go back to work. Please forgive the intromission and picking an old thread.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Brewski on July 29, 2010, 03:17:11 AM
Hi,

I've picked this old thread because I couldn't resist.
Please forgive the intromission, and also my limited English.
I'm just a lurker since some time, because I just don't have enough time to participate in the forum (actually; he should be working right now, instead of posting), and had thus gave up doing it rather early.


Hello, Jorge, thanks for the report from the Gulbenkian Hall.  This is in Lisbon, yes? 

And no problem reviving an old thread--people do it here all the time.   Feel free to post more often--not many reports from Portugal here!  :D

--Bruce
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: DavidRoss on July 29, 2010, 03:22:29 AM
Thank you so much for your post, Jorge.  Nothing to forgive about your English; your command seems as good as that of many native speakers.

You've rekindled my interest in Braga Santos and I shall be listening to Cassuto's recording of the 4th later today in honor of you.

Welcome to GMG!  I hope we'll see more from you as your time allows.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on July 29, 2010, 03:32:56 AM
Bem-vindo, Jorge!  I'm a great fan of Braga Santos.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: jowcol on July 29, 2010, 03:40:39 AM
Bem-vindo, Jorge!  I'm a great fan of Braga Santos.

I'm another fan, Jorge, and really enjoyed your post!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 29, 2010, 04:50:29 AM
Well, Jorge, I'm extremely jealous that you saw Braga Santos's Symphony No 4 LIVE in concert  :o. What an experience - that is really exciting. I love much of the music (hence the Avatar) and No 4 is my favourite.

Welcome to the GMG Forum.

Jeffrey
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: one_o_six on July 29, 2010, 06:30:38 AM
Thanks everybody for the kind comments.
I've been around before, in another thread, but I had to give up. The regular check of replies to posts (way of saying) made me find Braga Santos-related posts.
I really cannot waste time in forums, I do have a lot of work (perhaps it'll be better next week).
Although I find it difficult to discuss music listening (as well as to discuss sound) in a written form (instead of direct speech discussion), I've tried a lot in the past (for example in Audio Asylum (http://www.audioasylum.com)), and did in a lot in local forums (I'm a moderator in http://www.audiomania.com.pt/index.php?board=15.0), but along time I found out myself just mentioning music listening.
That's perhaps because I wake up with music and get asleep with music, every single day. Other than traffic news, all I hear in the car (one to two hours per day...) is music, almost all the free time I have is devoted to listening (sometimes I spend the whole weekend alone, listening), I even watch TV with no sound, because there's music being played in the hi-fi system. I suppose the only place I don't listen that often, other than work, is in the beach.
That's quite logical, I think, given the money I've spent so far in recordings and hi-fi...
BTW, this evening listening will concern Prom 16 (Wagner, Beethoven and Dvorak) (http://www.bbc.co.uk/proms/2010/whatson/2907.shtml#prom16).

While forums member, I posted a concert review here and there, and once was kindly invited to submit a review in The Bruckner Journal (http://www.brucknerjournal.co.uk/), probably my sole musical critic experience (http://images.bravenet.com/common/images/smilies/1_grin.gif)

I would rate that live 4th of October 2008 among my best 3 or 4 personal musical events. Haven't rated all musical experiences, of course, but a live Beethoven 9th (by the same performers), a very special event (long story), and perhaps a harpsichord recital (mostly Soler music) by Mayako Sone (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&biw=994&bih=500&q=mayako+sone) would probably also take part in such list.
(Already bought tickets for another live Beethoven 9th (http://www.musica.gulbenkian.pt/cgi-bin/wnp_db_dynamic_record.pl?dn=db_musica_season_2010_2011_en&orn=117&sn=coro_orquestra_gulbenkian), by the same suspects, in... June 2011!)
 
Braga Santos isn't my overall favorite composer (long story), but is perhaps my favorite Portuguese composer, although I like many of them (such as Carlos Seixas, Bontempo and Freitas Branco).
Anyway, orchestral music being, definitively, my cup of tea, symphonies rule, and Braga Santos' 4th among them.
I confess I don't like chamber that much, far from it (few exceptions comprise D.956), and sung music even less. I suppose everybody has his own bizarre preferences...

Yes, I do live in the Lisbon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lisbon) area, for almost forty years, and had already lived next door to the Gulbenkian Foundation headquarters. Posters with music stars were my landscape for years, some famous names seemed to look at me when I was waiting for the bus very early in the morning :-)
Alas, I couldn't always afford tickets, and nowadays they tend to be pricier and pricier, so I must confine myself to few concerts per season, given the Gulbenkian one usually brings here the cream of classical performers (one advantage of being in Europe), and that has a cost; sometimes I must opt for another hall and orchestra(s), mainly for financial reasons...

There's another good hall (Casa da Musica (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casa_da_M%C3%BAsica)) and orchestra (Orquestra Nacional do Porto) (http://www.casadamusica.com/group/default.aspx?channelID=D281C672-B6A9-45BF-B72C-38E9C8A16217&id=E5AA3496-BDB8-4A75-89D2-87311C4FEEA9&leftChannelID=D281C672-B6A9-45BF-B72C-38E9C8A16217) in Porto (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porto), but gas and pay toll don't help attending their performances :-(

These money constraints make me balance between two actual needs, live concerts and big loudspeakers, and I end up myself with none of them!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on July 29, 2010, 07:39:09 AM
Thanks Jorge for that great response! :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on March 04, 2011, 04:08:59 AM
The latest issue of Gramophone Magazine announces that Naxos are to record the orchestral work of Braga Santos with Alvara Cassuto and the Scottish National Orchestra. This is great news, especially for the former self-styled 'Braga-Santos Experts' of this forum. Interesting too, if this is true, that Naxos are not simply reissuing the old Marco Polo series with the same conductor but different orchestra on the Naxos label.  Hopefully this will make the music of this self-effacing Portuguese composer much better known to a wider audience.  Symphonies 1-4 (and especially 3 and 4 in my opinion) are wonderful works, worthy to stand alongside the symphonies of Sibelius and Vaughan Williams.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 04, 2011, 07:33:51 AM
The latest issue of Gramophone Magazine announces that Naxos are to record the orchestral work of Braga Santos with Alvara Cassuto and the Scottish National Orchestra. This is great news, especially for the former self-styled 'Braga-Santos Experts' of this forum. Interesting too, if this is true, that Naxos are not simply reissuing the old Marco Polo series with the same conductor but different orchestra on the Naxos label.  Hopefully this will make the music of this self-effacing Portuguese composer much better known to a wider audience.  Symphonies 1-4 (and especially 3 and 4 in my opinion) are wonderful works, worthy to stand alongside the symphonies of Sibelius and Vaughan Williams.


I am still here! As Honorary BSE.


(Good news, Jeffrey!)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on March 04, 2011, 03:04:34 PM

I am still here! As Honorary BSE.


(Good news, Jeffrey!)

Very pleased to hear it - after all you were the Honorary founder of the group.  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 04, 2011, 03:30:21 PM
Very pleased to hear it - after all you were the Honorary founder of the group.  :D

Yes, that was a memorable moment in GMG history... :


Okay, I'll come clean! I must speak out! This is going too well... This whole thread has been an experiment (conducted by Dundonnell, vandermolen, Christo and other so-called 'Braga Santos experts') to see whether an inordinate amount of enthusiasm could persuade people to buy CDs by a deservedly unknown third-rater from Portugal (of all places). I was the first victim of this 'viral' scam. Only shame prevented me from disclosing the terrible truth earlier.

Sorry, guys, you're on Candid Camera Musica.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SonicMan46 on March 04, 2011, 03:31:42 PM
Thanks everybody for the kind comments...........

I've been around before, in another thread, but I had to give up. The regular check of replies to posts (way of saying) made me find Braga Santos-related posts.....................

Yes, I do live in the Lisbon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lisbon) area, for almost forty years, and had already lived next door to the Gulbenkian Foundation headquarters..................

Hello Jorge - welcome to the GMG Forum & thank you for the posts in this thread - if not already done, you might consider posting an introduction in that section - won't take much of your time!  :)

In the mid-1970s, my wife & I took a week vacation in Portugal - mainly Lisbon and the environs and also a short visit to Madeira (believe that I still have some slides that I could digitize!) - we had a wonderful time (although a governmental coup occurred in the middle of our stay - not a major problem, though); I've been a 'vintage port' collector for years, so now I wished that we had been there 2 weeks - I would have visited Oporto and the Douro River and its wine areas.

Hope that you enjoy & find the time to post -  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 18, 2011, 04:19:59 PM
Even Vaughan Williams' slow movements can't compare to the passionate second movement of the second symphony!

I realize this was written four years ago, but I whole-heartedly disagree! RVW's slow movements are incredible, but Braga Santos' music is so different from his that I think, overall, the comparison between the two is way off-base.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Daverz on April 18, 2011, 04:37:43 PM
I realize this was written four years ago, but I whole-heartedly disagree! RVW's slow movements are incredible, but Braga Santos' music is so different from his that I think, overall, the comparison between the two is way off-base.

You seem overly fond of these kinds of statements.

I hear a definite resemblance between their styles.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 18, 2011, 04:43:14 PM
You seem overly fond of these kinds of statements.

I hear a definite resemblance between their styles.

A little resemblance. That is all. Yes, I'm fond of these statements because they're absolutely ridiculous. Beauty is beauty. Whether it's coming from RVW's pen or a hawk flying across the sky. Why people feel to the need to say something is more beautiful than something else that is just as beautiful is just illogical to me. That's like enjoying chocolate ice cream, but also enjoying butter pecan ice cream. Both are different, but one isn't really better than the other if a person likes them both. I mean shit this isn't a competition. Okay and the award for the most beautiful slow movements goes to....
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Daverz on April 18, 2011, 05:15:57 PM
A little resemblance. That is all. Yes, I'm fond of these statements because they're absolutely ridiculous. Beauty is beauty.

That wasn't the case for btpaul674 four years ago.  Braga Santos was more beautiful for him.  If you have an aesthetic argument to make, make it, but this is just emoting and name calling ("ridiculous", "illogical", "off-base").  Attacking people for their opinions like this is simply obnoxious.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 18, 2011, 05:20:11 PM
That wasn't the case for btpaul674 four years ago.  Braga Santos was more beautiful for him.  If you have an aesthetic argument to make, make it, but this is just emoting and name calling ("ridiculous", "illogical", "off-base").  Attacking people for their opinions like this is simply obnoxious.

But it's okay for other people to attack my opinions? I recall people jumping on me here like a pack of wolves when I said I don't like Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven. I didn't attack this guy's opinion. I disagreed with it. I'm allowed to disagree with people right?

About my argument, I already made it.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Philoctetes on April 18, 2011, 05:32:18 PM
That wasn't the case for btpaul674 four years ago.  Braga Santos was more beautiful for him.  If you have an aesthetic argument to make, make it, but this is just emoting and name calling ("ridiculous", "illogical", "off-base").  Attacking people for their opinions like this is simply obnoxious.

Thankfully, I cannot see the refuse he calls posts, but you really shouldn't waste your breath. He's decidedly foolhardy. There's no need for you to entertain him beyond that. 
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Daverz on April 18, 2011, 05:41:32 PM
Thankfully, I cannot see the refuse he calls posts

Are you using a script?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Philoctetes on April 18, 2011, 05:42:22 PM
Are you using a script?

I simply have him on ignore. I'm not using a script. I wish I was that savvy.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Daverz on April 18, 2011, 06:04:10 PM
I simply have him on ignore. I'm not using a script. I wish I was that savvy.

I don't see the option.  Anyway, ignore doesn't reduce the clutter he creates, which is the main problem.  I think there way be a way to killfile a poster with Greasemonkey (http://www.greasespot.net/).

OK, figured out where the ignore list is.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 18, 2011, 06:05:32 PM
I don't see the option.  Anyway, ignore doesn't reduce the clutter he creates, which is the main problem.  I think there way be a way to killfile a poster with Greasemonkey (http://www.greasespot.net/).

Aw, this type of post just warms my heart.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Philoctetes on April 18, 2011, 06:07:43 PM
I don't see the option.  Anyway, ignore doesn't reduce the clutter he creates, which is the main problem.  I think there way be a way to killfile a poster with Greasemonkey (http://www.greasespot.net/).

You have to click on the profile tab, first. Then, click on the modify profile tab, and you'll see the option. It clears up the clutter enough, I think.

I'll have to look into Greasfire. It sounds interesting.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 18, 2011, 06:10:58 PM
OK, figured out where the ignore list is.

Congratulations, you're a damn genius now.

(http://www.huffingtonpost.com/theblog/archive/bush_stupid.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on August 25, 2011, 04:44:54 PM
The latest issue of Gramophone Magazine announces that Naxos are to record the orchestral work of Braga Santos with Alvara Cassuto and the Scottish National Orchestra. This is great news, especially for the former self-styled 'Braga-Santos Experts' of this forum. Interesting too, if this is true, that Naxos are not simply reissuing the old Marco Polo series with the same conductor but different orchestra on the Naxos label.  Hopefully this will make the music of this self-effacing Portuguese composer much better known to a wider audience.  Symphonies 1-4 (and especially 3 and 4 in my opinion) are wonderful works, worthy to stand alongside the symphonies of Sibelius and Vaughan Williams.

Nothing former about us, Jeffrey ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 25, 2011, 08:55:23 PM

 Nothing former about us, Jeffrey
 

 
 The idea!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 26, 2011, 12:11:41 AM
And, when the Naxos cycle appears - we shall be back - like a Phoenix risen from the ashes.  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 26, 2011, 12:15:54 AM
And, when the Naxos cycle appears - we shall be back - like a Phoenix risen from the ashes.  :D


Yes, when it does I'll phone the other Johan (Christo), so that we can fly in formation.  ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 26, 2011, 12:20:40 AM

Yes, when it does I'll phone the other Johan (Christo), so that we can fly in formation.  ;D

Definitely - but you will be leading the formation  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 26, 2011, 12:23:50 AM
Definitely - but you will be leading the formation  ;D ;D


I'll start practising.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on August 26, 2011, 04:10:11 AM
And, when the Naxos cycle appears - we shall be back - like a Phoenix risen from the ashes.  :D

I think what Naxos intend, Jeffrey, is to plug the gaps in the Braga Santos discography.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on August 26, 2011, 04:13:58 AM
That will be very nice, indeed, Colin!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on August 27, 2011, 07:46:22 AM
I think what Naxos intend, Jeffrey, is to plug the gaps in the Braga Santos discography.

What works are missing from the discography right now?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on August 27, 2011, 07:41:55 PM
What works are missing from the discography right now?

If you allow me  ;):

A whole bunch of orchestral pieces and two concertos, esp.: Symphonic Overture No. 1 & Symphonic Overture No. 2 (1946 & 1947), `symphonic sketch' Paisajem (1952), Pastoral (1954), Canção (1955), symphonic poem Ruinas do Carmo (1961), Piano concerto (1973), Variações para orquesta (1976), Cello concerto (1987). Also three operas, four ballets, film music (six or more films), a Requiem à memória de Pedro de Freitas Branco (1964), two cantates and much more choral music.

Indeed, all his choral, vocal and chamber music is still to be recorded, but I hope that Naxos will start the series with his remaining orchestral output. Sounds like a good idea to me at least. :-)

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on August 27, 2011, 08:07:08 PM
If you allow me  ;):

A whole bunch of orchestral pieces and two concertos, esp.: Symphonic Overture No. 1 & Symphonic Overture No. 2 (1946 & 1947), `symphonic sketch' Paisajem (1952), Pastoral (1954), Canção (1955), symphonic poem Ruinas do Carmo (1961), Piano concerto (1973), Variações para orquesta (1976), Cello concerto (1987). Also three operas, four ballets, film music (six or more films), a Requiem à memória de Pedro de Freitas Branco (1964), two cantates and much more choral music.

Indeed, all his choral, vocal and chamber music is still to be recorded, but I hope that Naxos will start the series with his remaining orchestral output. Sounds like a good idea to me at least. :-)

Thanks Christo! I appreciate this valuable information.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on August 27, 2011, 08:27:40 PM
Thanks Christo! I appreciate this valuable information.

I'm wrong of course concerning the Cello concerto (1987), the crown in the last (so far) instalment of the Marco Polo series. But I should have included Otonifonias (1977), a suite for brass band. No doubt there's more than I'm aware of; I just compiled my work list from info in the booklets of cd's and other diverse sources, as I couldn't find one in the Internet and not even in the Portuguese books I could lay my hands on.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: petrarch on August 28, 2011, 01:54:57 AM
I just compiled my work list from info in the booklets of cd's and other diverse sources, as I couldn't find one in the Internet and not even in the Portuguese books I could lay my hands on.

On the composer: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=0&what=2&show=0&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Works list: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=2&what=2&type=2&show=2&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Recordings: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=4&what=2&show=2&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on August 28, 2011, 06:15:20 AM
On the composer: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=0&what=2&show=0&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Works list: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=2&what=2&type=2&show=2&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Recordings: http://mic.pt/dispatcher?where=4&what=2&show=2&pessoa_id=145&lang=PT
Many thanks. I was referring to the situation of almost a decade ago, when I compiled my own list.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 28, 2011, 10:02:18 PM
Thanks Johan and others  :)

Why did I think that they were going to re-record the symphonies?

(no offensive replies please  8))
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: karlhenning on August 29, 2011, 02:38:39 AM
Thanks Johan and others  :)

Why did I think that they were going to re-record the symphonies?

It's that sunny optimism which is such a credit to our upbringing! : )
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on August 31, 2011, 03:49:02 AM
If you allow me  ;):

A whole bunch of orchestral pieces and two concertos, esp.: Symphonic Overture No. 1 & Symphonic Overture No. 2 (1946 & 1947), `symphonic sketch' Paisajem (1952), Pastoral (1954), Canção (1955), symphonic poem Ruinas do Carmo (1961), Piano concerto (1973), Variações para orquesta (1976), Cello concerto (1987). Also three operas, four ballets, film music (six or more films), a Requiem à memória de Pedro de Freitas Branco (1964), two cantates and much more choral music.

Indeed, all his choral, vocal and chamber music is still to be recorded, but I hope that Naxos will start the series with his remaining orchestral output. Sounds like a good idea to me at least. :-)

(Nice to speak to you again, Johan!)

I would certainly imagine that Naxos will be looking to record the Viola Concerto of 1960 and the Piano Concerto of 1973 and the three Symphonic Overtures(1946, 1947 and 1954) plus the Elegy to Vianna da Motta of 1948. These works together are around 96 minutes wrth of music.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on August 31, 2011, 03:56:27 AM
It's that sunny optimism which is such a credit to our upbringing! : )

Hehe - Thank you Karl :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on September 01, 2011, 11:08:45 AM
Braga Santos wrote his Symphony No.1 in 1946 when he was 22 years of age.

This puts him into the same bracket as composers like Krenek(21), Henze(21), Weill(21), Casella(23), Malipiero(23). Shostakovich, of course, was only 19 when he composed his First. Many composers suppressed their first symphonies. Others waited many years before writing a symphony.

But what a fine work the Braga Santos is and what a marvellous slow movement:

http://www.mediafire.com/?r7ypz4tb9l7af6o
http://www.mediafire.com/?5md21px64weptp5
http://www.mediafire.com/?993or31h0ucctl0
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on November 17, 2011, 08:06:54 PM
Braga Santos fans rejoice:


Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on November 17, 2011, 11:28:36 PM
Braga Santos fans rejoice:

:-\ 8) ;D We do!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 18, 2011, 06:02:42 AM
Huzzah!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: The new erato on November 18, 2011, 07:38:53 AM
But the prize on amazon.com is pretty horrible. For VAT free export you can have it well below £ 4 on many UK sites.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on November 18, 2011, 08:48:13 AM
But the prize on amazon.com is pretty horrible. For VAT free export you can have it well below £ 4 on many UK sites.

I seldom buy directly from Amazon as their prices aren't competitive with their own Marketplace sellers, which will be whom I buy this recording from. 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 19, 2011, 07:33:02 AM
New Naxos release looks very good - looking forward to receiving it.

Meanwhile...

A bit more Information about J. Braga Santos from my charming Portuguese student (printed with her permission):

'He and another three friends (including my great-uncle...) had a quartet called 'Os Aguias', which in English means 'The Eagles'. 
According to my grandmother, they used to practice at my family's home, although they were always being told off or kicked out of the house for being 'too noisy' by my great-grandmother.
He was very ugly, although his name is 'Joly' which in French means 'beautiful/handsome/pretty.  My great-uncle would say that my grandmother looked like him to get on her nerves, although my grandmother would find it rather insulting.'

Poor Braga Santos! Not only was he neglected by his own countrymen but also, it seems, not much appreciated by his family either! Still, I did rather well out of this as my student's grandmother sent her back with the Portuguese boxed set of orchestral music by Braga Santos (Marco Polo recordings) which she, very generously, presented to me!

http://www.editions-ava.com/store/composer/117/
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 14, 2011, 01:47:01 PM
The new Naxos CD is great. The Symphonic Overture and Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta are classic Braga Santos and anyone who responds to symphonies 1-4 at least should love these works. The lighter 'Alfama' is very approachable and I also really enjoyed the 'Variations' of 1976 in Braga Santos's more modern style. In his booklet notes the conductor Alvaro Cassuto suggests that 'the present recording offers both experienced Braga Santos enthusiasts as well as novices, a bird's eye view of the various musical styles to be found in the music of this outstanding Portuguese composer...' clearly a reference to the 'Braga Santos experts' of this Forum  ;D

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: jowcol on December 14, 2011, 02:39:39 PM
The new Naxos CD is great. The Symphonic Overture and Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta are classic Braga Santos and anyone who responds to symphonies 1-4 at least should love these works. The lighter 'Alfama' is very approachable and I also really enjoyed the 'Variations' of 1976 in Braga Santos's more modern style. In his booklet notes the conductor Alvaro Cassuto suggests that 'the present recording offers both experienced Braga Santos enthusiasts as well as novices, a bird's eye view of the various musical styles to be found in the music of this outstanding Portuguese composer...' clearly a reference to the 'Braga Santos experts' of this Forum  ;D



Thanks.  I'm already in the doghouse over impulsive spending.  At least this is on Naxos....
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 14, 2011, 06:21:14 PM
The new Naxos CD is great. The Symphonic Overture and Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta are classic Braga Santos and anyone who responds to symphonies 1-4 at least should love these works. The lighter 'Alfama' is very approachable and I also really enjoyed the 'Variations' of 1976 in Braga Santos's more modern style. In his booklet notes the conductor Alvaro Cassuto suggests that 'the present recording offers both experienced Braga Santos enthusiasts as well as novices, a bird's eye view of the various musical styles to be found in the music of this outstanding Portuguese composer...' clearly a reference to the 'Braga Santos experts' of this Forum  ;D



Look forward to buying this cd AFTER Christmas ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on December 26, 2011, 09:07:30 AM
Listened to the new Naxos today :)

How wonderful again to revel in that gloriously distinctive 'Braga Santos sound', those broad, swinging melodies, the rich and colourful orchestration :) :)

How the concert-going public can be denied the opportunity to hear such gorgeous music is a real sadness.

Just imagine how a Braga Santos symphony, played by a top-notch orchestra conducted by Cassuto would go down at, say, the London Proms ;D ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on December 26, 2011, 02:16:09 PM
How the concert-going public can be denied the opportunity to hear such gorgeous music is a real sadness.

But thankfully, for the record buying public, this isn't much of a problem. I think hearing something in a concert hall is always an exciting event to behold, but we must be realistic about these things I think. I'm happy at home cranking up Braga Santos on my stereo. We're at least fortunate to have had some outstanding recordings made so we can, at least, hear and study the music. This, in itself, gives me much reason to celebrate.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on April 04, 2012, 02:22:33 AM
Been listening to this CD again - what a fine, inpiriting work 'Symphonic Overture No 3' is.  Absolutely classic Braga Santos and much the same goes for the moving 'Elegy'.  In fact I liked every work on this disc including the more modernist ones.  At Naxos price this CD would actually be a great introduction to a great composer.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: pjme on April 04, 2012, 09:59:01 AM
I bought the disc last week and enjoy it a lot.

Good work Naxos and thank you Alvaro!

Peter
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on April 05, 2012, 01:38:45 PM
I bought the disc last week and enjoy it a lot.

Good work Naxos and thank you Alvaro!

Peter

It's one of my most frequently played CDs at the moment.  Glad you enjoy it too.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on April 13, 2012, 06:03:02 PM
Thought I would revive this thread. Braga Santos is such an outstanding composer. I've owned the Marco Polo series for a couple of years now and each time I revisit any of the recordings, I'm instantly catapulted to that joyous first time I heard the music with fresh ears. I find something new in the music each time I hear it. Where's Jeffrey and Colin at when we need them?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on April 14, 2012, 12:52:37 AM
Happen to be playing the new Naxos cd with the ballet Alfama at the moment. Most of the music is not 'new', as I already owned Portugalsom/Strauss cds with the Symphonic Overture No. 3, Elegia a Vianni da Motta and Três Esboços Sinfónicos, also presented here.

The most substantial newcomer are the Variações para orquesta from 1976 then, but I only played it once so far. Alfama is indeed quite nice. One or two dances are remarkably similar to some of the 'Hardanger tunes' by Geirr Tveitt, coincidentally. In the booklet, conductor Álvaro Cassuto records, how he "discovered" the work only recently. However, the title was always on all the work lists, even in the Braga Santos entry in the 'old' New Grove I think.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on April 14, 2012, 01:53:42 AM
Thought I would revive this thread. Braga Santos is such an outstanding composer. I've owned the Marco Polo series for a couple of years now and each time I revisit any of the recordings, I'm instantly catapulted to that joyous first time I heard the music with fresh ears. I find something new in the music each time I hear it. Where's Jeffrey and Colin at when we need them?

I'm just above John - if you look at the previous messages! I hope that you are not implying that I am not living up to my reputation as a 'Braga Santos Expert' (Herrenberg).

 :P

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Dundonnell on April 14, 2012, 04:32:13 AM
We are not-or should not be-finished with the orchestral ouput of Braga Santos :)

A further Naxos cd could be compiled with:

Piano Concerto(1973: 24 mins.); Viola Concerto(1960; 28 mins.); Symphonic Overture No.1(1946; 7 mins.); Symphonic Overture No.2(1947; 15 mins.)

Then there is the Requiem "In memoriam Pedro Freitas Branco" of 1964 which could be coupled with a number of songs written for voice and orchestra.

...and while we are in Portugal:

http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Naxos/8572892

.....looks interesting :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 30, 2016, 12:30:56 PM
We are not-or should not be-finished with the orchestral ouput of Braga Santos :)

A further Naxos cd could be compiled with:

Piano Concerto(1973: 24 mins.); Viola Concerto(1960; 28 mins.); Symphonic Overture No.1(1946; 7 mins.); Symphonic Overture No.2(1947; 15 mins.)

Then there is the Requiem "In memoriam Pedro Freitas Branco" of 1964 which could be coupled with a number of songs written for voice and orchestra.

...and while we are in Portugal:

http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Naxos/8572892

.....looks interesting :)
A reference to this work by Colin, who sadly no longer posts here, referenced this CD by Lopes Graca. Forgive me if we have discussed it before but it is a great discovery, especially if you like the music of his compatriots Braga Santos (remember him? 8)) and Freitas Branco. The Symphony by Lopes Graca is catchy, memorable, inspriting and moving in places. I have played it over and over again.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on December 24, 2017, 08:56:06 PM
I was listening to Braga Santos' Symphony no. 4 the other day and was reminded of what an utterly FANTASTIC work it is, from start to finish! Not a single dull moment in the whole 54 minutes. From the nervous energy of the first movement, the doomed processional of the second, the heart-warming pastoral idylls of the third, to the exuberant joyousness of the finale, this is a work which really touches my soul. Though there are passages reminiscent of Sibelius, RVW, and Respighi, Braga Santos has his own, deeply humane voice. The finale even has (surely coincidental) echoes of populist Copland and John Barry's score for Dances with Wolves, but, make no mistake, this is a truly symphonic work that has such a life-affirming quality to it that it never fails to put a huge smile across my face. And it was written in 1950! :)

What really makes this work stand out to me is its abundance of memorable melodies. I will freely admit that many lesser-known works I have encountered may have brilliant orchestration/construction/etc but lack truly memorable melodies. Braga Santos undoubtedly has a true melodic gift. For the past couple days, I've been walking around constantly humming the insanely catchy tunes from the finale especially! I think I could say without exaggeration that this is one of my top 5 favorite pieces at the moment!

Any other admirers of this work (or Braga Santos in general) here besides Jeffrey (vandermolen) and Johan (Christo)? ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IsvX_vm-IXI (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IsvX_vm-IXI)

P.S. I very much like Braga Santos' other works as well (esp. Symphonies nos. 2 and 3) but for now I'll restrict myself to ranting about Symphony no. 4!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on December 25, 2017, 12:27:50 PM
I was listening to Braga Santos' Symphony no. 4 the other day and was reminded of what an utterly FANTASTIC work it is, from start to finish! Not a single dull moment in the whole 54 minutes. From the nervous energy of the first movement, the doomed processional of the second, the heart-warming pastoral idylls of the third, to the exuberant joyousness of the finale, this is a work which really touches my soul. Though there are passages reminiscent of Sibelius, RVW, and Respighi, Braga Santos has his own, deeply humane voice. The finale even has (surely coincidental) echoes of populist Copland and John Barry's score for Dances with Wolves, but, make no mistake, this is a truly symphonic work that has such a life-affirming quality to it that it never fails to put a huge smile across my face. And it was written in 1950! :)

What really makes this work stand out to me is its abundance of memorable melodies. I will freely admit that many lesser-known works I have encountered may have brilliant orchestration/construction/etc but lack truly memorable melodies. Braga Santos undoubtedly has a true melodic gift. For the past couple days, I've been walking around constantly humming the insanely catchy tunes from the finale especially! I think I could say without exaggeration that this is one of my top 5 favorite pieces at the moment!

Any other admirers of this work (or Braga Santos in general) here besides Jeffrey (vandermolen) and Johan (Christo)? ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IsvX_vm-IXI (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IsvX_vm-IXI)

P.S. I very much like Braga Santos' other works as well (esp. Symphonies nos. 2 and 3) but for now I'll restrict myself to ranting about Symphony no. 4!

I share your enthusiasm about this symphony kyjo, and completely agreed. It's something incredibly marvelous, certainly one of the most uplifting scores ever created. Braga Santos was inspired by the folk Portuguese music when composed it, and I say: wow, the Portuguese music is heavenly! The 4th movement, for me, is like the true bliss land, where problems don't exist, just happiness and joy. Symphonies like this one are ranked so high by me, symphonies where I can perceive the human soul, the positive side of human beings.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on December 25, 2017, 01:41:04 PM
I share your enthusiasm about this symphony kyjo, and completely agreed. It's something incredibly marvelous, certainly one of the most uplifting scores ever created. Braga Santos was inspired by the folk Portuguese music when composed it, and I say: wow, the Portuguese music is heavenly! The 4th movement, for me, is like the true bliss land, where problems don't exist, just happiness and joy. Symphonies like this one are ranked so high by me, symphonies where I can perceive the human soul, the positive side of human beings.

I completely agree! It's indeed one of the most optimistic works I know. As much as I love the turbulently emotional, dark music of Mahler, Shostakovich, etc. I must say that I find myself wanting to return more often to works like Braga Santos' 4th because of their deeply uplifting quality. The same applies to certain other composers such as Atterberg, Martinu, Hanson, and Piston who so often wrote music that conveys exuberant joy at a time when many other composers were writing either experimental/serialist music or music that reflects the horrors of current wars and other events. I find that a lot of the more optimistic, accessible music of the 20th century (of which Braga Santos' first four symphonies are prime examples) is severely neglected in the concert hall nowadays, which is a real shame, as audiences would likely respond very positively to it!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on December 25, 2017, 02:49:33 PM
Braga Santos is an excellent composer. I prefer him much more to his teacher, Freitas Branco. There’s something about Braga Santos’ musical language that appeals to me. Whether it be those lively rhythms, his harmonic vocabulary, or just the sheer power of his music, I always come away feeling glad I revisited the work of his I just listened to.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on December 25, 2017, 07:37:38 PM
Braga Santos is an excellent composer. I prefer him much more to his teacher, Freitas Branco. There’s something about Braga Santos’ musical language that appeals to me. Whether it be those lively rhythms, his harmonic vocabulary, or just the sheer power of his music, I always come away feeling glad I revisited the work of his I just listened to.

Great to see you're a fan, John (even though you don't think much of the 4th Symphony :o)! What are your favorite works of his?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on December 25, 2017, 08:01:23 PM
Great to see you're a fan, John (even though you don't think much of the 4th Symphony :o)! What are your favorite works of his?

Well, I wouldn’t call myself a ‘fan’, because there aren’t a whole lot of his works I enjoy. My two favorite works out of everything I’ve heard are his Symphony No. 2 and the ballet Encruzilhada (Crossroads). These two works really stand out to me, but that’s about it.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on December 25, 2017, 08:15:17 PM
Well, I wouldn’t call myself a ‘fan’, because there aren’t a whole lot of his works I enjoy. My two favorite works out of everything I’ve heard are his Symphony No. 2 and the ballet Encruzilhada (Crossroads). These two works really stand out to me, but that’s about it.

Ah, I see. Well those are two outstanding works indeed! The Symphony no. 2 has a particularly beautiful slow movement and a moving epilogue. I remember there was one movement from Crossroads that was particularly lovely - probably the Pas de deux.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on December 25, 2017, 08:40:58 PM
The Concerto for strings is worthy, too, and belongs to the same period of the Symphony No. 4, the Variations on an Alentejo Theme and the Symphonic Overture No. 3.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 26, 2017, 01:33:15 AM
Very much agree with Kyle , Caesar and John about Symphony 4 - a terrific score. I also like symphonies 1 - 3, especially No.3 and the Naxos 'Alfama' CD was a great discovery. As for Freitas-Branco I was also rather disappointed until I heard Symphony 4 which I'd strongly recommend.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Sergeant Rock on December 26, 2017, 05:45:54 AM
Braga Santos is an excellent composer....There’s something about Braga Santos’ musical language that appeals to me...

Well, I wouldn’t call myself a ‘fan’, because there aren’t a whole lot of his works I enjoy.

 ;D :D ;D ....Come on, John, make up your mind  ;)


Sarge
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on December 26, 2017, 06:20:39 AM
;D :D ;D ....Come on, John, make up your mind  ;)


Sarge

 :P
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 26, 2017, 07:16:02 AM
;D :D ;D ....Come on, John, make up your mind  ;)


Sarge

It's possible to hold two, apparently, contradictory positions in the mind at the same time.

John is clearly a Zen Master.

 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Mirror Image on December 26, 2017, 07:24:34 AM
It's possible to hold two, apparently, contradictory positions in the mind at the same time.

John is clearly a Zen Master.

 8)

Yes, I now look like this:

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/d4/45/67/d44567b746c21d5e8e6d44d1c21e3982.jpg)

;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 26, 2017, 08:08:00 AM
Yes, I now look like this:

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/d4/45/67/d44567b746c21d5e8e6d44d1c21e3982.jpg)

;D

Exactly as I imagined.
 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on December 26, 2017, 09:47:22 AM
Ah, I see. Well those are two outstanding works indeed! The Symphony no. 2 has a particularly beautiful slow movement and a moving epilogue. I remember there was one movement from Crossroads that was particularly lovely - probably the Pas de deux.
Definitely the pas de deux - it has a melody that will haunt you for days.  ???
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on January 26, 2018, 11:03:25 PM
My fellow Braga Santos fans should find much to enjoy in a great discovery I just made, the Symphonic Variations Margariteña by Venezualan composer Inocente Carreño (1919-2016). I just heard it played by the Pittsburgh Symphony tonight under the fantastic young Venezuelan conductor Rafael Payare. To my ears, the work shares much in common with Braga Santos' accessible, melodic, and folksy style, so I thought it would be worth mentioning here. Here's a performance by the Simon Bolivár orchestra under Dudamel: https://youtu.be/LCoC0cyyPFw
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 27, 2018, 03:19:45 AM
My fellow Braga Santos fans should find much to enjoy in a great discovery I just made, the Symphonic Variations Margariteña by Venezualan composer Inocente Carreño (1919-2016). I just heard it played by the Pittsburgh Symphony tonight under the fantastic young Venezuelan conductor Rafael Payare. To my ears, the work shares much in common with Braga Santos' accessible, melodic, and folksy style, so I thought it would be worth mentioning here. Here's a performance by the Simon Bolivár orchestra under Dudamel: https://youtu.be/LCoC0cyyPFw

You are quite right Kyle - it is a very nice Braga-Santos-like discovery which I very much enjoyed hearing. Must look out for more by this composer. Many thanks for posting the link.
 :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on January 27, 2018, 08:50:04 AM
You are quite right Kyle - it is a very nice Braga-Santos-like discovery which I very much enjoyed hearing. Must look out for more by this composer. Many thanks for posting the link.  :)
Jeffrey acts as the official spokesperson for all so-called BSE ('Braga Santos Experts'). Fully seconded.  :D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 27, 2018, 01:57:01 PM
Jeffrey acts as the official spokesperson for all so-called BSE ('Braga Santos Experts'). Fully seconded.  :D
;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on January 27, 2018, 04:49:22 PM
You are quite right Kyle - it is a very nice Braga-Santos-like discovery which I very much enjoyed hearing. Must look out for more by this composer. Many thanks for posting the link.
 :)

Glad you enjoyed it, Jeffrey (and Johan)! :) I've spotted a couple other orchestral works of Carreño on YouTube - must check them out.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 28, 2018, 07:38:45 PM
Glad you enjoyed it, Jeffrey (and Johan)! :) I've spotted a couple other orchestral works of Carreño on YouTube - must check them out.
Definitely Kyle. Pity there's not more on CD but good for my bank balance I guess.
 :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on March 30, 2018, 12:17:23 AM
Great to hear some JBS on the radio when I turned on BBC Radio 3 just after 9.00am. The final dance of the 'Alfama Suite'. First time I've heard any of his music broadcast.
 :)

And here is the great man himself with his family.
(http://)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on May 14, 2018, 07:21:33 PM
Recently discovered JBS' wonderful Symphonic Overture no. 3 (don't be put off by the dry title), which shares the wonderfully invigorating and melodic folk-music influences of his first four symphonies. Written in 1954, it is possibly the last of his works to be written in his accessible, tonal/modal earlier style. I also recently listened to his Cello Concerto (1987, one of his last works), which is a dark, somber work; certainly more "difficult" than his earlier music but not compared to some other music being written at the time. I found the great lyrical outburst toward the end of the work to be particularly moving - it's almost as if he's retrospectively looking back on his earlier style; after that the work dies off into bleakness.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 14, 2018, 07:43:57 PM
Recently discovered JBS' wonderful Symphonic Overture no. 3 (don't be put off by the dry title), which shares the wonderfully invigorating and melodic folk-music influences of his first four symphonies. Written in 1954, it is possibly the last of his works to be written in his accessible, tonal/modal earlier style. I also recently listened to his Cello Concerto (1987, one of his last works), which is a dark, somber work; certainly more "difficult" than his earlier music but not compared to some other music being written at the time. I found the great lyrical outburst toward the end of the work to be particularly moving - it's almost as if he's retrospectively looking back on his earlier style; after that the work dies off into bleakness.

The Symphonic Overture No. 3 is wondrous indeed! I wish I could listen to the other two. As you say, it's like a synthesis of the period that spans his first 4 symphonies. A gorgeously tuneful and uplifting overture.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 14, 2018, 10:30:33 PM
Following this discussion I've been listening to the fine and uplifting Symphonic Overture No.3; on Naxos it's followed by the equally fine but more tragic-sounding Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta (1948) which is another of my favourite shorter works by JBS. The somewhat dry title 'Symphonic Overture No.3' brings to mind other such works whose titles disguise the quality of the music, including Bax's 'Festival Overture' and Samuel Barber's 'Essay No.2 for Orchestra', both of which I find powerful and moving.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on May 16, 2018, 11:01:53 AM
The Symphonic Overture No. 3 is wondrous indeed! I wish I could listen to the other two. As you say, it's like a synthesis of the period that spans his first 4 symphonies. A gorgeously tuneful and uplifting overture.

I also wish to hear the first two Symphonic Overtures - I hope they are recorded! Ditto his viola and piano concerti, though I believe they both belong to his later style, which I find less appealing (but still worthwhile on its own terms). I see the Viola Concerto is on YouTube.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on May 21, 2018, 01:16:11 PM
Just discovered the Sinfonia pirenaica by Braga Santos' Basque neighbor Jesús Guridi (1886-1961). Written in 1945, it's roughly contemporary with JBS' first four symphonies. Like the Portuguese composer in his early period, the Guridi work utilizes folk material in a colorful, energetic, and life-affirming way. It must be said that, at least on first listening, I found the work rather weak structurally, and it disappointingly lacks a true slow movement. Nonetheless, it contains some wonderful moments and I think fellow BSEs would enjoy it  ;D It's available on this Naxos recording:



https://youtu.be/-NMk5zIpEwk
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on July 31, 2018, 11:50:03 AM
Brian altered us to this exciting upcoming Naxos release in the New Releases thread:

(https://i.ndcd.net/2/Item/500/459774.jpg)

The Piano Concerto is a late work (1973) so we can expect the more dissonant language characteristic of his 5th and 6th symphonies. The Symphonic Overtures 1 and 2 are earlier works (1946 and 1947; no. 1 was his first orchestral work), so we can expect the folksy/modal language of the first four symphonies. Dare we hope Naxos will go on to record his Viola Concerto, his chamber music (including two string quartets, a piano trio, a piano quartet, and a string sextet; all of which are later works besides the 1st quartet), and his vocal works (including an opera, Mérope)?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on July 31, 2018, 07:53:00 PM
Our pleas have been heard at last! A major release of Naxos so far. I'm grateful to this label because of their rescue of neglected composers. They do know the interests of avid people like us to enjoy not-recorded stuff, instead of recording the same works by the same composers over and over again like e.g. DG or Warner do. Long live the Naxos!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 31, 2018, 09:40:28 PM
Brian altered us to this exciting upcoming Naxos release in the New Releases thread:

(https://i.ndcd.net/2/Item/500/459774.jpg)

The Piano Concerto is a late work (1973) so we can expect the more dissonant language characteristic of his 5th and 6th symphonies. The Symphonic Overtures 1 and 2 are earlier works (1946 and 1947; no. 1 was his first orchestral work), so we can expect the folksy/modal language of the first four symphonies. Dare we hope Naxos will go on to record his Viola Concerto, his chamber music (including two string quartets, a piano trio, a piano quartet, and a string sextet; all of which are later works besides the 1st quartet), and his vocal works (including an opera, Mérope)?
OMG! Great news and love the cover image too.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on July 31, 2018, 09:41:12 PM
Just discovered the Sinfonia pirenaica by Braga Santos' Basque neighbor Jesús Guridi (1886-1961). Written in 1945, it's roughly contemporary with JBS' first four symphonies. Like the Portuguese composer in his early period, the Guridi work utilizes folk material in a colorful, energetic, and life-affirming way. It must be said that, at least on first listening, I found the work rather weak structurally, and it disappointingly lacks a true slow movement. Nonetheless, it contains some wonderful moments and I think fellow BSEs would enjoy it  ;D It's available on this Naxos recording:



https://youtu.be/-NMk5zIpEwk

Like this work very much as well Kyle.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on August 10, 2018, 10:31:36 AM
Brian altered us to this exciting upcoming Naxos release in the New Releases thread:

(https://i.ndcd.net/2/Item/500/459774.jpg)

The Piano Concerto is a late work (1973) so we can expect the more dissonant language characteristic of his 5th and 6th symphonies. The Symphonic Overtures 1 and 2 are earlier works (1946 and 1947; no. 1 was his first orchestral work), so we can expect the folksy/modal language of the first four symphonies. Dare we hope Naxos will go on to record his Viola Concerto, his chamber music (including two string quartets, a piano trio, a piano quartet, and a string sextet; all of which are later works besides the 1st quartet), and his vocal works (including an opera, Mérope)?

Just realized that, in addition to the PC and the two Symphonic Overtures, this disc also includes the substantial (13 minute) Vivier ou Morrer: Prelude, as well as four short pieces: Pastoral, Romance, Symphonic Prelude, and Intermezzo. According to the liner notes, these all belong to his earlier phase.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on August 10, 2018, 01:14:01 PM
Just realized that, in addition to the PC and the two Symphonic Overtures, this disc also includes the substantial (13 minute) Vivier ou Morrer: Prelude, as well as four short pieces: Pastoral, Romance, Symphonic Prelude, and Intermezzo. According to the liner notes, these all belong to his earlier phase.

Great news indeed. Still, there's enough unrecorded orchestral music left to hope for yet another CD with mostly early JBS:

Elegia tragica (1943)
Paisajem, symphonic scene, Op. 22 (1952)
Aria I Op. 6, for cello and orchestra (orchestrated) (1954)
Canção, Op. 23 (from the film Chaimite) (1955)
Ruinas do Carmo, symphonic poem, Op. 33 (1961)
Otonifonias, suite for brass band, Op. 50 (1977)

And we could also hope for a new recording (I have the old Strauss/Portugalsom, but who else does?) of the
Concerto for viola and orchestra Op. 31 (1960)

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on August 11, 2018, 07:14:13 AM
Great news indeed. Still, there's enough unrecorded orchestral music left to hope for yet another CD with mostly early JBS:

Elegia tragica (1943)
Paisajem, symphonic scene, Op. 22 (1952)
Aria I Op. 6, for cello and orchestra (orchestrated) (1954)
Canção, Op. 23 (from the film Chaimite) (1955)
Ruinas do Carmo, symphonic poem, Op. 33 (1961)
Otonifonias, suite for brass band, Op. 50 (1977)

And we could also hope for a new recording (I have the old Strauss/Portugalsom, but who else does?) of the
Concerto for viola and orchestra Op. 31 (1960)

I wasn't aware of the existence of most of these works - thanks for bringing them to my attention. I wouldn't be surprised if the ever-enterprising Alvaro Cassuto and Naxos have these up their sleeve!  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on August 12, 2018, 04:03:11 AM
Cassuto is 80 this year;  is he still conducting?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on September 14, 2018, 08:33:51 PM
Listening to with great enthusiasm the new Naxos release (this year has been quite prolific).

The two Symphonic Overtures are indisputably nice revelations. The 1st is clearly a very young Braga Santos, though is well managed. The 2nd called Lisboa stands out even more accomplished, more tuneful and developed. This only piece is worth acquiring the whole CD. Recommended.

The Symphonic Prelude is like a pastoral miniature, very in the vein of Atterberg, just gorgeous.

Now, Viver ou morrer Prelude is, thus far, the most dramatic and expressive work. It's a rather moving utterance. I'm impressed, this is so heartfelt and redemptive.

Thank Naxos for recording this gem, likewise the other works. This disc is a must-buy. Don't hesitate!

The other works are next.


(http://www.cinept.ubi.pt/images/bd/e245ec973519ede201b62b4113cc6ce6.jpg)

Joly seemed an agreeable guy, didn't he?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on September 14, 2018, 09:32:19 PM
Continuing with the rest of the CD, now I've played Pastoral, Romance, Intermezzo and the Piano Concerto. What I can say is that this is lovely stuff! Again, a set of exquisite miniatures that will delight the avid listeners.

On the other hand, the Piano Concerto, Op. 52 is a different beast. We are far from the sunny music of the previous works, but nothing bad about it. Astringent, kind of challenging but with substance. The instrumentation gives an effect of a mysterious and somber composition in the first two movements (baleful in places), albeit slightly more hopeful in the 3rd one. The piano writing weaves between percussive and lyrical, dominating an advanced harmony throughout (dodecaphonic and/or serialist).

All in all, this CD is one of the greatest eye-openers this year.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 14, 2018, 09:50:07 PM
Continuing with the rest of the CD, now I've played Pastoral, Romance, Intermezzo and the Piano Concerto. What I can say is that this is lovely stuff! Again, a set of exquisite miniatures that will delight the avid listeners.

On the other hand, the Piano Concerto, Op. 52 is a different beast. We are far from the sunny music of the previous works, but nothing bad about it. Astringent, kind of challenging but with substance. The instrumentation gives an effect of a mysterious and somber composition in the first two movements (baleful in places), albeit slightly more hopeful in the 3rd one. The piano writing weaves between percussive and lyrical, dominating an advanced harmony throughout (dodecaphonic and/or serialist).

All in all, this CD is one of the greatest eye-openers this year.
This is very exciting news Cesar and thanks for the update. The CD is en route to me so should arrive soon. It has been a musically exciting week for me as well with Ruth Gipps, Langgaard and Braga Santos release, not to mention the organ transcription of Basil Poledouris's fine score for 'Conan the Barbarian'. :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on September 14, 2018, 11:18:16 PM
not to mention the organ transcription of Basil Poledouris's fine score for 'Conan the Barbarian'. :)
Just wait for the balalaika version! #knockdown
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 15, 2018, 02:58:02 AM
Just wait for the balalaika version! #knockdown

Kazoo version coming out early next year.

 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 17, 2018, 01:14:49 AM
Listening to with great enthusiasm the new Naxos release (this year has been quite prolific).

The two Symphonic Overtures are indisputably nice revelations. The 1st is clearly a very young Braga Santos, though is well managed. The 2nd called Lisboa stands out even more accomplished, more tuneful and developed. This only piece is worth acquiring the whole CD. Recommended.

The Symphonic Prelude is like a pastoral miniature, very in the vein of Atterberg, just gorgeous.

Now, Viver ou morrer Prelude is, thus far, the most dramatic and expressive work. It's a rather moving utterance. I'm impressed, this is so heartfelt and redemptive.

Thank Naxos for recording this gem, likewise the other works. This disc is a must-buy. Don't hesitate!

The other works are next.


(http://www.cinept.ubi.pt/images/bd/e245ec973519ede201b62b4113cc6ce6.jpg)

Joly seemed an agreeable guy, didn't he?

Greatly enjoying 'Viver ou Morrer' at the moment. I'm in and out the house so listening to the CD in instalments but am very pleased with it. Nice photo of BS.  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on September 17, 2018, 10:48:10 AM
Greatly enjoying 'Viver ou Morrer' at the moment. I'm in and out the house so listening to the CD in instalments but am very pleased with it. Nice photo of BS.  :)

Excellent, Jeffrey! That work was one of the most enjoyable along with the Symphonic Prelude No. 2 Lisboa. The rest of the works don't disappoint at all either.

A friendly pic of the great Portuguese gentleman  :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 17, 2018, 01:01:30 PM
Excellent, Jeffrey! That work was one of the most enjoyable along with the Symphonic Prelude No. 2 Lisboa. The rest of the works don't disappoint at all either.

A friendly pic of the great Portuguese gentleman  :)
Indeed Cesar! I've listened to the whole CD now with much pleasure. Even the Piano Concerto, in his later and less accessible style, held my attention. At one point near the start of the third movement it sounded like the old Braga Santos was trying to break through! A fine CD - I agree.
 :)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: relm1 on September 23, 2018, 03:29:26 PM
What do you consider to be his symphonic masterpiece?  Also, has anyone heard any of his operas?  I was listening to the new Piano Concerto Naxos release and thought it sounds very theatrical.  Would like to hear his operas.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Daverz on September 23, 2018, 03:34:18 PM
What do you consider to be his symphonic masterpiece?

I'll go out on a limb and say that the consensus is Symphony No. 4.

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: relm1 on September 23, 2018, 04:17:14 PM
So I am a little confused by Braga Santos.  His lyrical early music is fantastic, but his piano concerto which is from his late phase is no worse than any Prokofiev piano concerto from half a century earlier.  Did he slowly devolve away from tonality?  What exactly was his relationship with atonality because I don't know what to make of his later music.  I find the new Naxos recording of early music plus the late piano concerto very comfortable listening yet I didn't quite get Symphony No. 5 and 6 which preceded it.    He is sort of a very mild progressive in his later stage.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on September 23, 2018, 07:08:04 PM
What do you consider to be his symphonic masterpiece?  Also, has anyone heard any of his operas?  I was listening to the new Piano Concerto Naxos release and thought it sounds very theatrical.  Would like to hear his operas.

Definitely no. 4 - one of my very favorite classical works - though nos. 1-3 are fantastic as well, as is the more "difficult" no. 5 (for some odd reason, I haven't gotten round to listening to no. 6 yet).  Unfortunately, his operas remain unrecorded - perhaps Naxos has them up their sleeve?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on September 23, 2018, 07:14:15 PM
So I am a little confused by Braga Santos.  His lyrical early music is fantastic, but his piano concerto which is from his late phase is no worse than any Prokofiev piano concerto from half a century earlier.  Did he slowly devolve away from tonality?  What exactly was his relationship with atonality because I don't know what to make of his later music.  I find the new Naxos recording of early music plus the late piano concerto very comfortable listening yet I didn't quite get Symphony No. 5 and 6 which preceded it.    He is sort of a very mild progressive in his later stage.

He seems to have had a very abrupt stylistic shift in the late 1950s/early 60s - not sure what inspired the change, as we lack an easily available detailed biography of the composer. Although his later works are significantly darker in tone and more dissonant than his earlier ones, they never lapse into noisy atonality and always have purpose to them. In fact, there are even some spots in his later works where it sounds like (as Jeffrey mentioned earlier) the "old Braga Santos is trying to break through" (e.g., a passage near the end of his Cello Concerto). Oddly enough, Braga Santos' later music sometimes reminds me of some of the later symphonies of William Schuman in its predominantly dark, angry, almost nightmarish atmosphere. Amazon reviewer G.D. vividly describes the 5th Symphony as containing "...thumping drums and flaring brass amidst string textures that reminds me of old steam engines letting out puffs of vapor dissolving against the troubled, overcast night sky." Couldn't have said it better myself!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 23, 2018, 09:21:41 PM
What do you consider to be his symphonic masterpiece?  Also, has anyone heard any of his operas?  I was listening to the new Piano Concerto Naxos release and thought it sounds very theatrical.  Would like to hear his operas.

I'd say symphonies 3 and 4 although the old Portugalsom (long gone) performance of Symphony 3 with the LSO is better than the Marco Polo (it's the other way round with Symphony 4 where the Marco Polo, without the chorus at the end, is superior). Many thanks to Christo for alerting me to the earlier LSO recording of Symphony 3.

Kyle's point about symphonies 5 and 6 being reminiscent of the later William Scuman symphonies is interesting and I agree with him.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on September 24, 2018, 03:17:48 AM
I'd say symphonies 3 and 4 although the old Portugalsom (long gone) performance of Symphony 3 with the LSO is better than the Marco Polo (it's the other way round with Symphony 4 where the Marco Polo, without the chorus at the end, is superior). Many thanks to Christo for alerting me to the earlier LSO recording of Symphony 3.

Kyle's point about symphonies 5 and 6 being reminiscent of the later William Scuman symphonies is interesting and I agree with him.
Agreed on all points. Both Nos. 3 and 4 are my favourites, in the specific recordings Vandermolen mentions here. Though it's good to have another recording of No. 4 with final chorus - the Romanian RTV SO and 'George Enescu Choir' under Silva Pereira, a recording from 1987 - the Marco Polo is indeed much better.

I was happy enough to 'discover' Braga Santos in the old days, before there were any Marco Polo or Naxos recordings, and these 'old' Strauss/Portugalsom CDs retain a special place in my heart. Actually in the cases of both No. 3 and No. 5 these 'old ones' are the recordings that I still prefer.
(https://images-eu.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61FyOZByo2L._SL500_.jpg)(https://img.discogs.com/OVnNa4gpxp422GYKGkpP38K434A=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-2914604-1307052992.jpeg.jpg)(https://img.discogs.com/6cpPhUX-H44_KpkUTUS8Vxu3m8c=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-2914572-1527167492-6728.jpeg.jpg)

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on September 24, 2018, 04:27:09 AM
Agreed on all points. Both Nos. 3 and 4 are my favourites, in the specific recordings Vandermolen mentions here. Though it's good to have another recording of No. 4 with final chorus - the Romanian RTV SO and 'George Enescu Choir' under Silva Pereira, a recording from 1987 - the Marco Polo is indeed much better.

I was happy enough to 'discover' Braga Santos in the old days, before there were any Marco Polo or Naxos recordings, and these 'old' Strauss/Portugalsom CDs retain a special place in my heart. Actually in the cases of both No. 3 and No. 5 these 'old ones' are the recordings that I still prefer.
(https://images-eu.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61FyOZByo2L._SL500_.jpg)(https://img.discogs.com/OVnNa4gpxp422GYKGkpP38K434A=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-2914604-1307052992.jpeg.jpg)(https://img.discogs.com/6cpPhUX-H44_KpkUTUS8Vxu3m8c=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-2914572-1527167492-6728.jpeg.jpg)
It would be great if those old Portugalsom recordings could be reissued maybe as a boxed set. I recently picked up a Portugalsom boxed set of the symphonies of Braga Santos's teacher Freitas Branco, so maybe there is some hope.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on January 24, 2019, 11:54:46 AM
On the last days I've been in a Braga Santos exploration, listening to his other orchestral works other than the symphonies and concertos:

Alfama Suite
Elegy to Vianna da Motta
Variations on an Alentejo theme
Divertimento No. 1
The Three Symphonic Overtures
Nocturno for Strings
Pastoral
Romance
Symphonic Prelude
Intermezzo
Viver ou Morrer: Prelude

Encruzhilhada

Three Symphonic Sketches
Sinfonietta for strings
Symphonic variations
Divertimento No. 2
Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp
Staccato Brilhante


The first group of works represent his sunny side, the infectiously tuneful music. Encruzhilhada is a mix between his  two phases (a very appropriate name btw!), and the last group contains his more demanding stuff. I'm amazed by how dramatic his change was, but not certainly negative, in fact, I enjoyed enormously the works of his late period, eg. the Symphonic Variations (not to be confused with the Alentejo Variations), the Three Symphonic Sketches and the Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp gave me the strongest impression, it's amazing music, dark and threatening too! Braga Santos knew how to create suspense and nightmarish atmospheres, who would believe it?  :D

As for the first group, there are some beautiful and poignant gems, among them Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta (that was exceptional), Alfama Suite (great tunes gallore, above all in the Pas de trois), and the Divertimento No. 1. The Symphonic Overture No. 3 and the Alentejo Variations have a special aura for me, the sense of well-being they give me bring some tears of sheer joy to my eyes.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 24, 2019, 12:13:52 PM
On the last days I've been in a Braga Santos exploration, listening to his other orchestral works other than the symphonies and concertos:

Alfama Suite
Elegy to Vianna da Motta
Variations on an Alentejo theme
Divertimento No. 1
The Three Symphonic Overtures
Nocturno for Strings
Pastoral
Romance
Symphonic Prelude
Intermezzo
Viver ou Morrer: Prelude

Encruzhilhada

Three Symphonic Sketches
Sinfonietta for strings
Symphonic variations
Divertimento No. 2
Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp
Staccato Brilhante


The first group of works represent his sunny side, the infectiously tuneful music. Encruzhilhada is a mix between his  two phases (a very appropriate name btw!), and the last group contains his more demanding stuff. I'm amazed by how dramatic his change was, but not certainly negative, in fact, I enjoyed enormously the works of his late period, eg. the Symphonic Variations (not to be confused with the Alentejo Variations), the Three Symphonic Sketches and the Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp gave me the strongest impression, it's amazing music, dark and threatening too! Braga Santos knew how to create suspense and nightmarish atmospheres, who would believe it?  :D

As for the first group, there are some beautiful and poignant gems, among them Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta (that was exceptional), Alfama Suite (great tunes gallore, above all in the Pas de trois), and the Divertimento No. 1. The Symphonic Overture No. 3 and the Alentejo Variations have a special aura for me, the sense of well-being they give me bring some tears of sheer joy to my eyes.
Totally agree with you Cesar - especially your last paragraph.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on January 24, 2019, 04:27:43 PM
Totally agree with you Cesar - especially your last paragraph.

(http://supagina.com.mx/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/supagina-FB-Like-400x400.png)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on August 03, 2019, 11:51:58 AM
Attention all BSEs! Naxos will be releasing a recording of the great composer’s late Piano Trio (1985), along with a trio by his teacher Freitas Branco and shorter works by Frederico de Freitas and Alexandre Delgado:

https://www.naxos.com/catalogue/item.asp?item_code=8.574014

Due to its composition date, we would expect the Piano Trio to be characteristic of his dark, dissonant later style, but the blurb on the Naxos website describes it as being characteristic of his “infectious lyricism”. :o We shall see...

Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: SymphonicAddict on August 05, 2019, 01:24:46 PM
A performance of the Braga Santos Piano Trio is on YouTube if you want to check it out.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on August 05, 2019, 05:26:17 PM
A performance of the Braga Santos Piano Trio is on YouTube if you want to check it out.

Oh, you’re right! Thanks for reminding me.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on November 28, 2019, 01:26:07 PM
(https://b2b.naxosusa.com/Images/LoRes/BackCovers/5060113442079.jpg)

More interesting forthcoming stuff. Very glad to know this label is interested in neglected or 'rarely-heard' composers.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on November 28, 2019, 02:52:24 PM
(https://b2b.naxosusa.com/Images/LoRes/BackCovers/5060113442079.jpg)

More interesting forthcoming stuff. Very glad to know this label is interested in neglected or 'rarely-heard' composers.

Fantastic news!!! Major kudos to Toccata Classics and other labels (CPO, Naxos, Chandos, Dutton, Lyrita, etc.) who tirelessly work to bring the work of these neglected composers to light. I’ve always wanted to hear Braga Santos’ chamber music, and now we will finally have the opportunity!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on November 28, 2019, 03:43:18 PM
Fantastic news!!! Major kudos to Toccata Classics and other labels (CPO, Naxos, Chandos, Dutton, Lyrita, etc.) who tirelessly work to bring the work of these neglected composers to light. I’ve always wanted to hear Braga Santos’ chamber music, and now we will finally have the opportunity!

Thoroughly agreed.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: dissily Mordentroge on November 28, 2019, 03:45:36 PM
Do we know how many volumes are planned?
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on November 28, 2019, 03:48:45 PM
Do we know how many volumes are planned?

Don't really, at least not yet. I just hope they cover all his chamber music.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on November 28, 2019, 08:23:53 PM
The first group of works represent his sunny side, the infectiously tuneful music. Encruzhilhada is a mix between his  two phases (a very appropriate name btw!), and the last group contains his more demanding stuff. I'm amazed by how dramatic his change was, but not certainly negative, in fact, I enjoyed enormously the works of his late period, eg. the Symphonic Variations (not to be confused with the Alentejo Variations), the Three Symphonic Sketches and the Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp gave me the strongest impression, it's amazing music, dark and threatening too! Braga Santos knew how to create suspense and nightmarish atmospheres, who would believe it?  :D

Totally agree with your observations & read them all with nodding agreement (I 'discovered' Braga Santos for myself in the late 1990s and am really happy to see that the bunch of you here feel very much the same about this fabulous composer).

BTW, just as an anecdote: during my first travel (by Interrrail, unlimited railway traveling for one month throughout Europe for students - and one can imagine how many nights we just slept in trains to save money and get everything out of it ;-) back in 1984, when we spent two days in Lisbon, I recall having seen these early Braga Santos CDs in a shop window closed at Sunday's; I always regretted that I didn't have the opportunity to buy one, because we left the city that night, and felt relieved when I finally discovered a music store in the Amsterdam Ferdinand Bol Street in the later 1990s that imported these Portugalsom CDs, then still rare, directly from Portugal (and didn't sell much so that I was able to acquire the whole lot during the sales).

Your appreciation of his tougher style from the 1960s and 1970s - he more or less returned to a more approachable style in the 1980s as you observed - is an idea I also happen to share. It even applies to his two last symphonies, but hearing the right recording is a help. Especially the Fifth shows all these capacities in the most 'atmospheric' recording of the three extant, IMHO:

(https://img.discogs.com/d2erqysn757NKTqA72u1G_ArCek=/fit-in/461x465/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9505166-1481963957-8223.jpeg.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on November 28, 2019, 08:33:54 PM
Totally agree with your observations & read them all with nodding agreement (I 'discovered' Braga Santos for myself in the late 1990s and am really happy to see that the bunch of you here feel very much the same about this fabulous composer).

BTW, just as an anecdote: during my first travel (by Interrrail, unlimited railway traveling for one month throughout Europe for students - and one can imagine how many nights we just slept in trains to save money and get everything out of it ;-) back in 1984, when we spent two days in Lisbon, I recall having seen these early Braga Santos CDs in a shop window closed at Sunday's; I always regretted that I didn't have the opportunity to buy one, because we left the city that night, and felt relieved when I finally discovered a music store in the Amsterdam Ferdinand Bol Street in the later 1990s that imported these Portugalsom CDs, then still rare, directly from Portugal (and didn't sell much so that I was able to acquire the whole lot during the sales).

Your appreciation of his tougher style from the 1960s and 1970s - he more or less returned to a more approachable style in the 1980s as you observed - is an idea I also happen to share. It even applies to his two last symphonies, but hearing the right recording is a help. Especially the Fifth shows all these capacities in the most 'atmospheric' recording of the three extant, IMHO:

(https://img.discogs.com/d2erqysn757NKTqA72u1G_ArCek=/fit-in/461x465/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9505166-1481963957-8223.jpeg.jpg)

Quite interesting to read those anecdotes, Christo. Those Portugalsom discs are like a treasure these days, likewise that unusual Decca disc you posted! I never thought it appeared on that label.

I remember not liking, or better, understanding the last two symphonies when I heard them for the first time. Very challenging for my tender ears, but now it's all so different. And thus far I don't know a work by him I truly dislike.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on November 28, 2019, 08:55:15 PM
Quite interesting to read those anecdotes, Christo. Those Portugalsom discs are like a treasure these days, likewise that unusual Decca disc you posted! I never thought it appeared on that label.

I remember not liking, or better, understanding the last two symphonies when I heard them for the first time. Very challenging for my tender ears, but now it's all so different. And thus far I don't know a work by him I truly dislike.
Great to learn, the early LP recording of No. 5 BTW appeared on cd in this guise:
(http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2000/apr00/santos5.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on November 30, 2019, 12:35:13 PM
Totally agree with your observations & read them all with nodding agreement (I 'discovered' Braga Santos for myself in the late 1990s and am really happy to see that the bunch of you here feel very much the same about this fabulous composer).

BTW, just as an anecdote: during my first travel (by Interrrail, unlimited railway traveling for one month throughout Europe for students - and one can imagine how many nights we just slept in trains to save money and get everything out of it ;-) back in 1984, when we spent two days in Lisbon, I recall having seen these early Braga Santos CDs in a shop window closed at Sunday's; I always regretted that I didn't have the opportunity to buy one, because we left the city that night, and felt relieved when I finally discovered a music store in the Amsterdam Ferdinand Bol Street in the later 1990s that imported these Portugalsom CDs, then still rare, directly from Portugal (and didn't sell much so that I was able to acquire the whole lot during the sales).

Your appreciation of his tougher style from the 1960s and 1970s - he more or less returned to a more approachable style in the 1980s as you observed - is an idea I also happen to share. It even applies to his two last symphonies, but hearing the right recording is a help. Especially the Fifth shows all these capacities in the most 'atmospheric' recording of the three extant, IMHO:

(https://img.discogs.com/d2erqysn757NKTqA72u1G_ArCek=/fit-in/461x465/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9505166-1481963957-8223.jpeg.jpg)
You should have smashed into the shop.
 8)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Christo on November 30, 2019, 03:33:38 PM
You should have smashed into the shop.
 8)
We are rather familiar with the way some nice English visitors do their shopping in places like Amsterdam, but I hadn't learnt the trick in time to apply it in Lisbon, very sorry!
(https://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/newpix/2018/03/24/17/4A82510000000578-5539751-A_riot_officer_armed_with_a_baton_patrols_the_streets_of_Amsterd-a-99_1521912253663.jpg)(https://miro.medium.com/max/5000/1*cLGEr44eMbdOf2u3g2f2Ag.jpeg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on December 01, 2019, 12:12:55 AM
We are rather familiar with the way some nice English visitors do their shopping in places like Amsterdam, but I hadn't learnt the trick in time to apply it in Lisbon, very sorry!
(https://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/newpix/2018/03/24/17/4A82510000000578-5539751-A_riot_officer_armed_with_a_baton_patrols_the_streets_of_Amsterd-a-99_1521912253663.jpg)(https://miro.medium.com/max/5000/1*cLGEr44eMbdOf2u3g2f2Ag.jpeg)
LOL - yes, most of my Christmas shopping is done that way.
 ;D
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on December 30, 2019, 05:31:08 PM
(https://d2duss065tgxcq.cloudfront.net/toccata/wp-content/uploads/20191111205427/TOCC0207.jpg)

In the past days I was listening to this fresh release. The SQ No. 1 has the Braga Santos's trademarks, it's an alluring and merry work but I felt it was a little overlong for its material. It's a nice piece but not a special one. The SQ No. 2 is in the same vein than the previous one but it's much more succinct and eventually successful. I especially liked the folksy 3rd movement. The String Sextet is, in my view, the strongest piece here. A severe work, recognizable for its thorny sounds, very reminiscent of Prokofiev's idiom overall I thought. Quite rewarding music.

Whilst I did enjoy the content of the CD, I don't consider it mandatory. I hope Toccata will bring us more releases of his chamber music soon, though.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on January 03, 2020, 02:59:42 AM
(https://d2duss065tgxcq.cloudfront.net/toccata/wp-content/uploads/20191111205427/TOCC0207.jpg)

In the past days I was listening to this fresh release. The SQ No. 1 has the Braga Santos's trademarks, it's an alluring and merry work but I felt it was a little overlong for its material. It's a nice piece but not a special one. The SQ No. 2 is in the same vein than the previous one but it's much more succinct and eventually successful. I especially liked the folksy 3rd movement. The String Sextet is, in my view, the strongest piece here. A severe work, recognizable for its thorny sounds, very reminiscent of Prokofiev's idiom overall I thought. Quite rewarding music.

Whilst I did enjoy the content of the CD, I don't consider it mandatory. I hope Toccata will bring us more releases of his chamber music soon, though.
Thanks for this review Cesar. Good to know.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on June 29, 2020, 10:58:20 AM
New release:

(https://toccataclassics.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/TOCC0428.jpg)
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: kyjo on May 29, 2021, 07:05:22 AM
Faith in Hurwitz restored - he’s promoting Braga Santos!

https://youtu.be/D3KlttFhzh0

The featured work is the final movement of Encruzilhada (Crossroads). I’m not sure if this was intentional on Braga Santos’ part, but the work does indeed represent a bit of a “crossroads” between his early and late styles - clever!
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: Symphonic Addict on May 29, 2021, 10:53:44 AM
Faith in Hurwitz restored - he’s promoting Braga Santos!

https://youtu.be/D3KlttFhzh0

The featured work is the final movement of Encruzilhada (Crossroads). I’m not sure if this was intentional on Braga Santos’ part, but the work does indeed represent a bit of a “crossroads” between his early and late styles - clever!

That's a very memorable tune, as almost always with this great composer's music. Hurwitz could make many videos featuring Braga Santos's gorgeous tunes.
Title: Re: Joly Braga Santos
Post by: vandermolen on May 29, 2021, 09:30:32 PM
Faith in Hurwitz restored - he’s promoting Braga Santos!

https://youtu.be/D3KlttFhzh0

The featured work is the final movement of Encruzilhada (Crossroads). I’m not sure if this was intentional on Braga Santos’ part, but the work does indeed represent a bit of a “crossroads” between his early and late styles - clever!
Oh yes, it's a great tune! Thanks for posting Kyle.