Hovhaness

Hovhaness

[hoh-vah-nis]
Hovhaness, Alan, 1911-2000, American composer, b. Somerville, Mass., as Alan Vaness Chakmakjian. Hovhaness was of Armenian and Scottish descent, and many of his works are based on Armenian culture or show influences from Middle Eastern, Asian, or early European music. Inspired by nature and Christian mysticism, he was also interested in unusual sonorities, rejecting the harmonic complexities of much modern music in favor of melody, clarity, simplicity, and an encompassing musical atmosphere. Hovhaness was enormously prolific; although he destroyed many compositions in 1940, his extant works number about 500, including nearly 70 symphonies. Among his works are Lousadzak [coming of light] (1945), for piano and strings; the widely played Second Symphony, subtitled Mysterious Mountain (1955); the symphonic poem Ukiyo-Floating World (1965); And God Created Great Whales (1970), for orchestra and recorded humpback whale; and Mt. Katahdin (1987), a piano sonata.
or Alan Hovaness orig. Alan Vaness Chakmakjian

(born March 8, 1911, Somerville, Mass., U.S.—died June 21, 2000, Seattle, Wash.) U.S. composer. He started to compose as a child. Studies at the New England Conservatory led him to pursue an interest in non-Western music, which began to influence his own work only after he destroyed his early compositions. Affected by the music of his Armenian heritage and his own lifelong mysticism, he composed some 500 works in addition to the 1,000 or more early pieces he destroyed in 1943. His compositions included some 60 symphonies and many other orchestral works, often on sacred themes, sometimes incorporating aleatory or natural sounds, as in And God Created Great Whales (1970).

Learn more about Hovhaness, Alan with a free trial on Britannica.com.

or Alan Hovaness orig. Alan Vaness Chakmakjian

(born March 8, 1911, Somerville, Mass., U.S.—died June 21, 2000, Seattle, Wash.) U.S. composer. He started to compose as a child. Studies at the New England Conservatory led him to pursue an interest in non-Western music, which began to influence his own work only after he destroyed his early compositions. Affected by the music of his Armenian heritage and his own lifelong mysticism, he composed some 500 works in addition to the 1,000 or more early pieces he destroyed in 1943. His compositions included some 60 symphonies and many other orchestral works, often on sacred themes, sometimes incorporating aleatory or natural sounds, as in And God Created Great Whales (1970).

Learn more about Hovhaness, Alan with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Search another word or see hovhanesson Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature