Orchestral Music of Hadley, Farwell, MacDowell, Herbert, Parker
This three disc set of American orchestral masterpieces brings several works into the CD catalog for the first time. Recorded in the 60s by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Karl Krueger, these path-breaking recordings, originally done for the Society for the Preservation of the American Musical Heritage, have been lovingly re-mastered by Grammy winning Engineer/Producer Adam Abeshouse. Edward MacDowell's "Indian" Suite is the composer's most substantial orchestral composition and is accompanied by the composer's rarely heard Suite No. 1. "Vathek" is one of Horatio Parker's two symphonic poems. Parker based this composition on a work of fabulous excess and immorality, the early Gothic picaresque, "The History of the Caliph Vathek" by the eccentric millionaire intellectual, novelist and travel writer William Beckford (1759-1844). Victor Herbert's orchestral masterpiece, "Hero and Leander", was fated to remain unpublished during the composer's lifetime. It is given an opulent reading by Krueger and his British forces. Arthur Farwell's "The Gods of the Mountain" is music of great exoticism and originality. Though a suite taken from incidental music for a play by Lord Dunsany, the work feels like a short symphony with echoes and presages of motifs from each of the movements serving to bind the work together with great unity of design. Henry Hadley's rarely heard Second Symphony of 1901 was awarded two prizes and may justly be called one of the first successful American symphonies. "Salome" was one of Hadley's favorites among his own compositions, and was written after he had seen a production of Oscar Wilde's sensational and decadent play.
“There was one earlier recording of Salome; it was included in Karl Krueger’s pioneering series for The Society for the Preservation of the American Musical Heritage, and was reissued as part of a 2003 set by Bridge. Canfield prefers the new recording to its sometimes slightly scrappy predecessor—and I’d have to agree. But the Bridge collection is worth exploring nonetheless, because it also includes not only Salome but also Hadley’s inventive Second Symphony, MacDowell’s two orchestral suites, and, more revelatory still, a disc of stirring orchestral works by Horatio Parker, Arthur Farwell, and Victor Herbert. If the Dutton CD can make you recalibrate your sense of history, the Bridge set might encourage you to trade it in entirely.” - Fanfare
Edward MacDowell: Suite No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 42
Edward MacDowell: Suite No. 2 'Indian', Op. 48
Henry Hadley: Symphony No. 2 in F Minor, 'The Four Seasons' Op. 30
Henry Hadley: Salome, Op. 55