The songs have been subjected to an analysis and each song was subdivided into three areas: text analysis, musical analysis, and audio recordings. Additionally there are pages for bibliographical information; and a discography with links to recording publishers and retailers. Throughout this site one will also find links to external web sites and pages that should be helpful while performing research. Acknowledgements The author would like to thank several individuals that have offered assistance during this project.
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Finzi became one of the most characteristically "English" composers of his generation. Despite being an agnostic of Jewish descent, several of his choral works incorporate Christian texts. During these formative years he also suffered the loss of all three of his brothers. In the poetry of Hardy, Traherne, and later William Wordsworth , Finzi was attracted by the recurrent motif of the innocence of childhood corrupted by adult experience.
From the very beginning, most of his music was elegiac in tone. Finzi was a former vegetarian. He gave up vegetarianism and favoured eggs, fish and sometimes bacon or chicken.
In , following five years of study with Bairstow, Finzi moved to Painswick in Gloucestershire , where he began composing in earnest. His first Hardy settings and the orchestral piece A Severn Rhapsody were soon performed in London to favourable reviews.
In , at the suggestion of Adrian Boult , Finzi took a course in counterpoint with R. He also amassed a large library of some volumes of English poetry, philosophy and literature, now kept at the University of Reading and a collection some volumes including books, manuscripts and printed scores of 18th-century English music, now kept at the University of St Andrews.
He also worked on behalf of the poet-composer Ivor Gurney , who had been committed to a mental hospital. In the Finzis moved to Ashmansworth in Hampshire , where he founded the Newbury String Players , an amateur chamber orchestra which he conducted until his death, reviving eighteenth century string music as well as giving premieres of works by his contemporaries, and offering chances of performance for talented young musicians such as Julian Bream and Kenneth Leighton.
After the war, he became somewhat more productive than before, writing several choral works as well as the Clarinet Concerto , perhaps his most popular work. But this happiness was not to last. Biographies refer to him subsequently developing chickenpox , which developed into a "severe brain inflammation ". What this probably means, in modern medical language, is that the shingles developed into disseminated shingles , which resembled chickenpox, and was complicated by encephalitis.
He died soon afterwards, aged 55, in the Radcliffe Infirmary , Oxford, the first performance of his Cello Concerto on the radio having been given the night before. His ashes were scattered on May Hill near Gloucester in Among his other songs, the settings of Shakespeare poems in the cycle Let Us Garlands Bring are the best known. For voice and orchestra he composed the above-mentioned Dies natalis, and the pacifist Farewell to Arms He began what is believed to have been intended as a piano concerto.
This was never finished or given a title, but after his death his publisher gave two of the individual movements names and published them as the separate works Eclogue and Grand Fantasia and Toccata. He also completed a violin concerto which was performed in London under the baton of Vaughan Williams, but was not satisfied with it and withdrew the two outer movements; the surviving middle movement is called Introit. This concerto thus received only its second performance in and its first recording is now on Chandos.
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Let us Garlands Bring
Let Us Garlands Bring