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John Tavener

(b. 1944) English composer


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(b London, 1944).

Eng. composer and organist. Org., St John's, Kensington, 1960. Prof. of mus., TCL, 1969–74. Mus. of rich imaginative and eclectic resource and of profound religious spirit, as in Ultimos ritos and Celtic Requiem, in which children's games are linked to the idea of death. Convert to Gr. Orthodox Church. Knighted 2000. Prin. works:

operas & music theatre:

The Cappemakers

(1965, rev. of 1964 choral work, see below);

Thérèse

(1973–6);

A Gentle Spirit

(after Dostoyevsky), sop., ten., small ens. (1976–7);

Eis Thanaton

(1986);

Mary of Egypt

(1991).

orch.:

pf. conc. (1962–3); chamber conc. (1965, rev. 1968);

Grandma's Footsteps

, 5 mus. boxes, chamber ens. (1967–8);

Variations on 3 Blind Mice

(1972);

Palintropos

, pf., orch. (1978–9);

Towards the Son: Ritual Procession

, tb., 4 gongs, 4 bowed psalteries, perc., str. (1982);

The Protecting Veil

, vc., str. (1987);

The Repentant Thief

, cl., perc., timp., str. (1990);

Eternal Memory

, vc., ens. (1992);

Theophany

, str., ww., alto fl., brass, perc. (1994);

Tears of the Angels

, vn., str. (1995);

Petra

, str. (1996);

Ekstasis

, sop., tpt., vn., orch. (2000);

Hymn of Dawn

, sop., bar., vn., fl., orch. (2002);

Pratirùpa

, pf., str. (2005).

soloist(s), chorus, & orch.:

The Cappemakers

, 2 narr., 10 soloists, male ch., orch. (1964, rev. for stage 1965);

The Whale

, mez., bar., ch., children's ch., speaker, 6 actors, org., orch., tape (1965–6);

Introit for March 27, the Feast of St John Damascene

, sop., alto, ch., orch. (1967–8);

Nomine Jesu

, mez., ch., ens., 5 speaking vv. (1970);

Responsorium in memory of Annon Lee Silver,

2 sop., ch., 2 fl. (opt.) (1971);

Ultimos Ritos

, SATB soloists, ch., 5 spkrs., orch. (1972);

Kyklike Kinēsis

, sop., vc., ch., pf., str. (1977);

Akhmatova: Requiem

, sop., bar., orch. (1979–80);

Akathist of Thanksgiving

, soloists, ch., bells, str. (1986–7);

Ikon of St Seraphim

, bar., 4 bass, ch., orch. (1988);

Resurrection

, soloists and actors, ch., male ch., orch. (1989);

We Shall See Him As He Is

, sop., ten., ch., org., 2 tpt., timp., str. (1991–2);

Hymns of Paradise

, bass, ch., str. (1992–3);

The Apocalypse

, sop., mez., ten., counterten., treble, bass, ch., children's ch., orch. (1993–4);

Eternity's Sunrise

, sop., baroque orch. (1998);

Lamentations and Praises

, ch., orch. (2000);

Song of the Cosmos

, sop., bar., ch., orch. (2000);

Lament for Jerusalem

, sop., counterten., ch., orch. (2002);

The Veil of the Temple

, soloists, 4 ch., orchs. (2003).

solo voice(s) & instr(s).:

3 Holy Sonnets (John Donne)

, bar., small orch., tape (1962);

Cain and Abel

, SATB soloists, orch. (1965);

3 Surrealist Songs

, mez., tape, pf. (1967–8);

In Alium

, sop., org., pf., str. (1968);

Celtic Requiem

, sop., ch., children's ch., ens. (1969);

Canciones españolas

, 2 sop. or counterten., 2 fl., org., hpd. (1972);

Requiem for Father Malachy

, 2 counterten., ten., 2 bar., bass, ens., org., str. qt. (1973, rev. 1979);

6 Russian Folk Songs

, v., ens. (1978);

The Immurement of Antigone

[...]

Subjects: Music — Contemporary History (Post 1945).


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