Holst: The Planets

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 16, 1995 - Music - 99 pages
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This book is the first comprehensive guide to Holst's orchestral suite The Planets. It considers the music in detail and places the work in its historical context, describing the circumstances of its composition and its meteoric rise to popular acclaim. Starting with Holst's particular interest in astrology, Greene reveals a profound statement of human character and Holst's own psychological journey toward the mystical state. Using parallels in the verbal and visual arts, Greene weaves here a fascinating tale of musical communication.
 

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Contents

Hoist and the two Londons
9
Holst in London to 1914
11
London after the war
14
Holsts reputation through the war years and after
15
Genesis
18
Origins and models
20
Chronology and working method
26
Reception
30
the Magician
61
the Mystic
64
On becoming The Planets the overall design
68
the transformation of the first theme of Mars
72
the search for largescale structural control
77
musical character and the search for serenity
80
Musical character versus programmaticism
82
Epilogue
83

The character plots 1 Mars to Mercury
40
the Bringer of War
42
the Bringer of Peace
47
the Winged Messenger
52
The character plots 2 Jupiter to Neptune
55
the Bringer of Old Age
57
Holsts public performances 190821
86
Comparison of tempos in selected recordings of The Planets
90
Notes
93
Select bibliography
97
Index
99
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