Sunday Gramophone - Howard Hanson conducts Howard Hanson - The Eastman Rochester Symphony and Alfred Mouledous, piano play Howard Hanson's Fantasy Variations On A Theme Of Youth For Piano And Orchestra. Recorded in 1953
December 5, 2010

The subject is youth. The photo is 1867.

From the Radio series America's Composers broadcast on February 9, 1953,is a performance by The Eastman Rochester Symphony conducted by Howard Hanson and featuring Alfred Mouledous, piano of Hanson's own Fantasy And Variations On A Theme Of Youth for Piano and Orchestra.

There seems to be a pattern emerging this weekend - we're in a big Americana mood. Folk Music on Pop Chronicles, Duke Ellington on Gallimaufry and now Howard Hanson on Sunday Gramophone. It's not intentional - the common thread is that it's good and probably hasn't been heard in a long time, if at all.

This is not music that's going to put pressure on you. The thing about the America's Composer's series was that the music was pretty safe and non-threatening. But there's a place for that, and a warm welcome place too. Just as there is for the new adventuresome stuff, the stuff that is jarring, dissonant or challenging. It's there so you get to sample it and take it with you if you like it and it becomes part of your life.

If you look at art (music, theater, film, books) as you would a series of dates - not all of them are sensational but you're glad you went on them rather than stay home, then you're able to accept everything that comes your way, knowing you don't have to spend the rest of your life with it - just a few minutes and glad for the chance. Next.


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