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Havergal Brian's "Faust"


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Author Topic: Havergal Brian's "Faust"  (Read 275 times)
Albion
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Henry Hugo Pierson (1815-1873)


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« on: April 08, 2020, 03:51:49 pm »

Martyn Brabbins and ENO forces have recorded Brian's large-scale opera Faust (1955-56) complete. I don't know which record label is involved, but given the issue of the reconstructed Vision of Cleopatra with the same team it may be Dutton.

Apologies if this information has been already posted! This will be a significant addition to our knowledge of the composer in theatrical mode, something which The Tigers (in the splendid BBC recording released on Testament) has shown well worthy of exploration and celebration...

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A piece is worth your attention, and is itself for you praiseworthy, if it makes you feel you have not wasted your time over it. (SG, 1922)

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Grandenorm
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« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2020, 09:38:28 pm »

Wow! Never thought I'd get to hear that. Can't wait for more information.
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Albion
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2020, 01:57:43 am »

Yes, I can confirm that it has been recorded for Dutton. Sessions took place at Abbey Road between 27th and 30th August last year:

http://www.havergalbrian.org/new/media/news/IMG_4166_small.JPG

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A piece is worth your attention, and is itself for you praiseworthy, if it makes you feel you have not wasted your time over it. (SG, 1922)
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« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2020, 03:12:06 pm »

Having been part of the team that edited and typeset the score from manuscript for this recording (and having heard the first edits), I can confirm that this is top-notch Brian.
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« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2020, 03:18:02 pm »

I am really looking forward to it.
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« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2020, 12:47:25 am »

Having been part of the team that edited and typeset the score from manuscript for this recording (and having heard the first edits), I can confirm that this is top-notch Brian.

Do you think it might be possible to reconstruct his mid period oratorio, Prometheus Unbound?  I know the full score is lost but believe the vocal score and piano reduction are extant.
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« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2020, 12:34:02 pm »

I would suggest sending an email to the Brian Society, as I've never seen the materials, so can't comment.
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jimfin
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2020, 02:16:36 am »

Very excited about Faust! With the CDs of The Tigers and our own broadcast of Agamemnon on here, that leaves only The Cenci and Turandot unheard on record (apart from extracts).

As for Prometheus, I think it has always been hoped that the full score would turn up some day, but it's not looking hopeful, sixty years after it disappeared. It seems it would be a very big job, that the orchestra was very important. Still I imagine that a reconstruction has been seriously considered.
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Albion
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2020, 09:54:13 pm »

As for Prometheus, I think it has always been hoped that the full score would turn up some day, but it's not looking hopeful, sixty years after it disappeared. It seems it would be a very big job, that the orchestra was very important. Still I imagine that a reconstruction has been seriously considered.

Given John Pickard's quite amazing re-orchestration of The Vision of Cleopatra (1907) as recorded by Dutton, such things are clearly possible in theory but in light of the sheer scale of Prometheus Unbound even if the original autograph surfaced the task of editing and making orchestral parts would probably necessitate a substantial grant from the National Lottery (some hope)! In the meantime it is incredibly fortuitous that Faust was recorded before the current lock-down crisis...

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A piece is worth your attention, and is itself for you praiseworthy, if it makes you feel you have not wasted your time over it. (SG, 1922)

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