Sunday, March 8, 8911

Alan (Chakmakjian) Hovhaness (1911-2000)

Alan (Chakmakjian) Hovhaness (1911-2000)

Prelude and Quadruple Fugue (1936)

Symphony No. 1 ("Exile") (1937): I Andante espressivo: Allegro

Symphony No. 2 ("Mysterious Mountain") (1955)

Magnificat (1958):

     I. Celestial Fanfare

     II. Magnificat

Symphony No. 4 (1958)

     I. Andante

     II. Allegro

     III. Andante espressivo

And God Created Great Whales (1970)

Symphony No. 50 ("Mount St. Helens") (1983): III Volcano

Alan Hovhaness (March 8, 1911 - June 21, 2000) was an American composer of Armenian and Scottish ancestry, but the inspiration for his mature work was as much Eastern as Western.

His music is accessible to the lay listener and often evokes a mood of mystery or contemplation. The Boston Globe music critic Richard Buell wrote: "Although he has been stereotyped as a self-consciously Armenian composer (rather as Ernest Bloch is seen as a Jewish composer), his output assimilates the music of many cultures. What may be most American about all of it is the way it turns its materials into a kind of exoticism. The atmosphere is hushed, reverential, mystical, nostalgic."

He was among the most prolific of 20th century composers, his official catalog comprising 67 numbered symphonies (surviving manuscripts indicate over 70) and 434 opus numbers.

However, the true tally is well over 500 surviving works since many opus numbers comprise two or more distinct works.

[8911 Joe Turner / 8911 Hovhaness / 8910 Barber]