HAVERGAL BRIAN (1876 - 1972)
The English composer Havergal Brian, in a long career, made little concession to the practicalities of performance in a series of orchestral compositions on a grand scale. These include 32 symphonies, many of which were for a long time denied professional performance. The first of these, the massive Gothic Symphony, was written between 1919 and 1927, and includes a setting of the Te Deum. The last symphony was written in 1968. Havergal Brian’s musical language is complex but tonal; and, however eccentric, he is never less than impressive.