Howard Hanson - a lifelong dedication to the cause of Contemporary American music, including his own.

Howard Hanson Conducts Howard Hanson – 1953 – Past Daily Weekend Gramophone

Howard Hanson - a lifelong dedication to the cause of Contemporary American music, including his own.

Howard Hanson – a lifelong dedication to the cause of Contemporary American music, including his own.

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Some Americana tonight, by way of the Eastman School of Music Symphony, with the venerable Dr. Howard Hanson at the podium.

Part of the series America‘s Composers, this segment features Hanson conducting one of his own, lesser-known works. Fantasy Variations On A Theme Of Youth for pIano and orchestra featuring the Eastman School Symphony along with Alfred Mouledous, piano.

The series America’s Composers was a fascinating look at what was a rather busy and productive outpouring of what at the time was considered Contemporary American Classical music. Sadly, very few of the names mentioned in this series are remembered today; some barely, and only by way of one or two pieces.

Dr. Howard Hanson was a vigorous supporter of Contemporary Music, and his tenure at the Eastman School of Music is legendary. As a composer himself, Hanson achieved a modicum of success, but even his work has falled into obscurity in recent decades.

So maybe a reminder now and then about the vast untapped libraries of undiscovered and long-forgotten works might be a good thing.

For now, here is that performance of Hanson’s Fantasy Variations On A Theme Of Youth, as broadcast on February 9, 1953.

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4 Responses

  1. John Grant says:

    Many thanks for this!

    So maybe a reminder now and then about the vast untapped libraries of undiscovered and long-forgotten works might be a good thing.

    Have you come across unsungcomposers.com?

  2. fremaux 123 says:

    Howard Hanson: an icon !!

  3. Dear Gordon, This is a private message for you: I’m not sure whether you might have it, but may I put in a very humble request for an NBC concert under the direction of Juan Jose Castro? He conducted some NBC concerts in the 1940s and I think at least one of them was broadcast. I’m really grateful for all your Sunday Gramophone postings – look at them every week without fail! And the Ansermet this week was a big surprise. Incidentally, Ansermet was a very great friend of Castro’s and performed his music in many countries. Their friendship went back to the 1920s. If you possibly could find the Castro, you would be pleasantly surprised. Best, Maestro

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