The British composer Nicholas Maw died May 19 at his home in Washington, DC. Maw was trained in twelve-tone technique, but even in his earliest works, such as Scenes and Arias for three women's voices and orchestra, the piece that brought him to international attention, there was an underlying lyricism in his musical language. In 1960 he underwent an artistic crisis, and when he began composing again, his music was more freely lyrical and melodic, while retaining the rigorous technique of his training. The expressiveness and emotional directness of his work made him one of the most popular and successful British composers of his generation. His Odyssey (1987) is considered the longest piece of continuous symphonic music ever written, lasting over an hour and a half. Among his most frequently performed works is his neo-Romantic 1993 Violin Concerto, written for Joshua Bell. He is probably best known for his opera, Sophie's Choice, based on the William Styron novel and the movie starring Meryl Streep, which was produced at Covent Garden in 2002.
Norman Del Mar - Maw: Scenes and Arias - Part 2. Pur vostre amour, allas, allas
Simon Rattle - Maw: Odyssey - Introduction
Daniel Harding - Maw: Dance Scenes - II. Andante pesante
Joshua Bell - Maw: Violin Concerto - I. Prelude: Moderato Tranquillo - Andante Moderato
Mark Shepherd - Maw: Three Hymns - Morning Hymn