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Howard Hanson: Symphony No. 2, Op. 30, "Romantic"
I. Adagio - Allegro moderato
II. Andante con tenerezza
III. Allegro con brio
Howard Hanson: Fantasy-Variations on a Theme of Youth, Op. 40
Fantasy-Variations on a Theme of Youth, Op. 40
Howard Hanson: Symphony No. 4, Op. 34, "The Requiem"
I. Kyrie: Andante inquieto
II. Requiescat: Largo
III. Dies irae: Presto
IV. Lux aeterna: Largo pastorale
Howard Hanson: Elegy, Op. 44
Elegy, Op. 44
Howard Hanson: Symphony No. 6
II. Allegro scherzando
IV. Allegro assai
Howard Hanson: Serenade, Op. 35
Serenade, Op. 35
Howard Hanson: Mosaics
Howard Hanson: Symphony No. 7, "The Sea"
I. Lo, the unbounded sea
II. The untold want
III. Joy, shipmate, joy!
“Gerard Schwarz's red-blooded 1988 account of the Second Symphony (Romantic) remains a match for any rival. Schwarz and his excellent Seattle band do full justice to its dark opulence, concision and organic power. Similarly, there's no missing the communicative ardour and clean-limbed security of Schwarz's lucid reading of the Sixth. Commissioned in 1967 by the New York Philharmonic for their 185th anniversary season, it boasts a formidable thematic economy and intriguing formal scheme of which Hanson himself was justifiably proud. Its successor, A Sea Symphony from 1977, sets texts from Walt Whitman's Leavesof Grass. In the unashamedly jubilant finale Hanson fleetingly quotes from his Romantic Symphony of more than four decades earlier: it's a spine-tingling moment in a score of consummate assurance and stirring aspiration. Schwarz's traversal finds the Seattle Symphony Chorale on rousing form. We also get exemplary renderings of the pretty 1945 Serenade for flute, harp and strings (a gift for Hanson's wife-to-be, Margaret Elizabeth Nelson) and characteristically inventive FantasyVariations on a Theme of Youth from 1951 (with Carol Rosenberger a deft soloist), both these featuring Schwarz directing the New York Chamber Symphony. The present warmhearted accounts of both the Elegy in memory ofSerge Koussevitzky and Mosaics (which is a highly appealing set of variations written in 1957 for Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra) need not fear comparison with the composer's own Mercury recordings. The engineering is wonderfully ripe.”
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