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Posted by David Brown on July 25, 2015, 10:20 pm
I thought the scale and duration statistics of Brian's "Gothic" Symphony were well enough aired by now to be given a rest, but clearly not when in his otherwise terrific review of the new Naxos disc of Symphonies 6, 28, 29 and 31, Steve Arloff reflects on "there being some disagreement about it being the longest ever written". There really isn't... as it most definitely is not. At least four orchestral or choral/orchestral works called "symphony" comfortably exceed "The Gothic" in duration: Derek Bourgeois' #9 (c111 mins; OK, that one is by a smidge) and #42 "Life, the Universe and Everything" (c155 mins), Jean-Louis Nicodé's "Gloria! Ein Sturm und Sonnenlied" (which, also at around two and a half hours, seems to hold the crown for the longest in a single movement), and of course, way out in front at around four and a half hours, Sorabji's "Jāmī" Symphony. So... a couple of questions for the super-erudite correspondents of this message board: (1) Does anyone know of any others that exceed "The Gothic" duration-wise (apart from a veery slow Mahler 3, of course), and which of those four would you be most excited to hear in a live performance?
- http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2015/Jul/Brian_sys_8573408.htm - David Brown July 25, 2015, 10:20 pm
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