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Treasury of the 78's:
Music for Horn

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Item Type: Sound Recording Duration: 62 mins
Event Type: Music Program Origin: KPFA

From a program first broadcast on June 12, 1962, John Whiting presents some early 78 rpm recordings of music for horn, performed by Audbry Brain and his son Dennis Brain. The first selection heard is Johannes Brahms “Trio in E-Flat Major,” for piano, horn and violin. Long recognized as one of the finest classical chamber music recordings of the early 20th century this 1934 disc features the horn playing of Audbry Brain. Audbry was a member of a talented musical family that included his father and brother, both highly respected horn players in established English orchestras, and his two sons, Leonard, who bucked family tradition by becoming an oboists of fine repute, and perhaps the most talented of them all, Dennis, who continued the family custom of horn performance until his untimely death in an automobile accident at the age of 36. It is Dennis who is featured in the second musical selection of this fine program, Benjamin Britten’s “Serenade” for tenor, horn, and strings. “Serenade” is a song cycle that includes texts by Charles Cotton, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, William Blake, Ben Jonson, and John Keats. Although the recordings are a little scratchy by today’s digital standards, the quality of the performances more than makes up for any minor distractions caused by the early recording technique, and the unique opportunity to hear the work of two such talented horn players performing at the height of their careers is not to be missed.

Musical Selections:  Trio in E-Flat Major, Op. 40, for piano, horn, and violin (1865) (29:05) / Johannes Brahms -- Serenade: Prologue ; Pastoral [text by Charles Cotton] ; Nocturne [text by Alfred, Lord Tennyson] ; Elegy [text by William Blake] ; Dirge [ text by anonymous, 15th century] ; Hymn [text by Ben Jonson] ; Sonnet [text by John Keats] ; Epilogue, Op. 31, for tenor, horn, and strings (1943) (24:31) / Benjamin Britten
Performers:  Audbry Brain, horn (Trio)
Rudolf Serkin, piano (Trio)
Adolf Busch, violin (Trio)
Peter Pears, tenor (Serenade)
Dennis Brain, horn (Serenade)
Boyd Neel String Orchestra (Serenade)
Benjamin Britten, conductor (Serenade)
Genres:  Classical Music; Chamber Music
Subject:  19th century classical; Chamber music; Trios (Piano, horn, violin); Song cycles; Songs (High voice) with chamber orchestra; Songs (High voice) with string orchestra
People:  Whiting, John ; Brahms, Johannes, 1833-1897; Britten, Benjamin, 1913-1976; Cotton, Charles, 1630-1687 ; Tennyson, Alfred Tennyson, Baron, 1809-1892 ; Blake, William, 1757-1827 ; Jonson, Ben, 1573?-1637 ; Keats, John, 1795-1821 ; Brain, Aubrey, 1893-1955 ; Serkin, Rudolf, 1903-1991; Busch, Adolf, 1891-1952; Pears, Peter, Sir ; Brain, Dennis, 1921-1957
First Broadcast Date:  6/12/1962
 
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