Alan Hovhaness, choral works (Ave Maria, Christmas Ode, Easter Cantata)


Alan Hovhaness, choral works (Ave Maria, Christmas Ode, Easter Cantata)



This LP contains three splendid, haunting choral pieces composed by Alan Hovhaness (1911-2000):

Ave Maria
boys’ (or women’s) voices, 2 oboes (or trumpets or clarinets), 2 horns (or trombones) & harp (or piano)

Christmas Ode (As on the Night)
soprano, celesta & strings

Easter Cantata
soprano, chorus, 2 oboes, 2 horns, 3 trumpets, tamtam, harp, celesta & strings

Alan Hovhaness (then named Alan Vaness Chakmakjian) and my father, Alan W. Smith, both grew up in Arlington, Massachusetts. They both attended Arlington High School; Alan Chakmakjian (Hovhaness) had already graduated by the time my father began high school.

Alan Chakmakjian (Hovhaness) and my father both studied under the same piano teacher in Arlington and had a nodding acquaintance.


— Roger W. Smith



from Wikipedia


Alan Hovhaness was an American composer of Armenian and Scottish descent. He was one of the most prolific 20th-century composers, with his official catalog comprising 67 numbered symphonies (surviving manuscripts indicate over 70) and 434 opus numbers. The true tally is well over 500 surviving works since many opus numbers comprise two or more distinct works.

Boston Globe  music critic Richard Buell wrote: “Although [Hovhaness] has been stereotyped as a self-consciously Armenian composer … his output assimilates the music of many cultures. What may be most American about all of it is the way it turns its materials into a kind of exoticism. The atmosphere is hushed, reverential, mystical, nostalgic.”

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