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Artist Hyperion Records
Handley, Vernon (conductor)
© Malcolm Crowthers

Vernon Handley (conductor)

For forty years Vernon Handley’s career was unique amongst front rank conductors in that he has unashamedly championed British repertoire before that of all other countries. Recognised as Sir Adrian Boult’s protégé he held steadfastly to two principles, which might have proved detrimental to a successful career: the undemonstrative technique and the unfashionable repertoire.

Vernon Handley probably recorded, performed and broadcast more British music than any other conductor living or dead. In some 150 discs, over 90 are British, including 87 works which have not been recorded before. He gave over 100 premieres. In his recorded output are all the symphonies of Vaughan Williams, Stanford, Malcolm Arnold and Robert Simpson, all the major works of Elgar and the whole of Moeran’s orchestral music.

He was outright winner twice of the Gramophone Record of the Year, as well as runner up twice and nominated 8 times. He won the BPI Classical award twice and his recording of Walton’s First Symphony was declared “Collectors Choice” in Classic CD. He won a Grand Prix du Disque for a recording of French repertoire with the Philharmonia Orchestra.

In 1983 the London Philharmonic made Vernon Handley their Associate Conductor in recognition of his long relationship with the orchestra. He was Chief Guest Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Chief Conductor of the Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Ulster Orchestra, Chief Guest Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Chief Guest Conductor of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Chief Conductor of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and Chief Guest Conductor of the BBC Concert Orchestra.

During this time Vernon Handley was Professor of Conducting at the Royal College of Music and was created Hon R.C.M. & F.R.C.M by Her Majesty the Queen Mother. He was also regularly conducting the National Youth Orchestra and the World Youth Orchestra and is widely known for his encouragement of young professional players.

Vernon Handley was appointed Musical Director to the Borough of Guildford in 1962, staying for twenty-one years to establish a new professional orchestra, the Guildford Philharmonic. During his tenure the Guildford Concerts Scheme was one of the most successful in the country, playing an extraordinarily wide repertoire and making several first-ever recordings of unfamiliar British works. In recognition of his great contribution to music in the South East, the University of Surrey awarded him a Doctorate.

Until his death on 9 September 2008 Vernon Handley was Conductor Emeritus of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Associate Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He was created Honorary Fellow of the Royal Philharmonic Society in 1990 and was elected an Honorary Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford in 1999.

Albums

Bantock: Hebridean & Celtic Symphonies
CDA66450
Bantock: Orchestral Music
CDS44281/66CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Bantock: Pagan Symphony
CDA66630Archive Service; also available on CDS44281/6
Bantock: Sappho & Sapphic Poem
CDA66899Archive Service; also available on CDS44281/6Download currently discounted
Bantock: Thalaba the Destroyer & other orchestral works
CDA67250Archive Service; also available on CDS44281/6
Bantock: The Cyprian Goddess & other orchestral works
CDA66810Archive Service; also available on CDS44281/6
Bantock: The Song of Songs
CDA67395Archive Service; also available on CDS44281/6Download currently discounted
Boughton: Symphony No 3 & Oboe Concerto No 1
CDH55019Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
Elgar: Choral Songs
CDA67019Archive Service
Howells: Concertos & Dances
CDH55205Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Archive Service
Howells: Hymnus Paradisi & An English Mass
CDA66488Download currently discounted
Mackenzie: Violin Concerto & Pibroch
CDH55343Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
McCabe: Symphony No. 4 & Flute Concerto
CDA67089
Simpson: Symphonies Nos 1 & 8
CDA66890
Simpson: Symphonies Nos 2 & 4
CDA66505
Simpson: Symphonies Nos 3 & 5
CDA66728
Simpson: Symphonies Nos 6 & 7
CDA66280Archive Service; also available on CDS44191/7
Simpson: Symphony No 10
CDA66510Archive Service; also available on CDS44191/7
Simpson: Symphony No 9
CDA66299
Simpson: The Complete Symphonies
CDS44191/77CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

Complete works available for download

SIR GRANVILLE BANTOCK (1868-1946)
A Celtic Symphonywith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
A Hebridean Symphonywith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Caristionawith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Dante and Beatricewith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Fifine at the fairwith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Overture to a Greek Tragedywith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Pagan Symphonywith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Pierrot of the Minute 'A comedy overture to a dramatic phantasy of Ernest Dowson'with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Processionalwith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Sapphic Poemwith Julian Lloyd Webber (cello), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Sapphowith Susan Bickley (mezzo-soprano), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Thalaba the destroyerwith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
The Cyprian Goddesswith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
The Sea Reiverswith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
The Witch of Atlaswith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Two Heroic Balladswith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
RUTLAND BOUGHTON (1878-1960)
Concerto for oboe and strings No 1 in Cwith Sarah Francis (oboe), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 3 in B minorwith Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
SIR EDWARD ELGAR (1857-1934)
Death on the hills, Op 72with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Evening Scenewith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Five Partsongs from the Greek anthology, Op 45with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Four Choral Songs, Op 53with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Go, song of mine, Op 57with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
My Love Dwelt in a Northern Land, Op 18 No 3with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
The Heraldwith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
The Prince of Sleepwith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
The Reveille, Op 54with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
The Wandererwith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Two Choral Songs, Op 71with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Two Choral Songs, Op 73with London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Weary wind of the westwith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
Zut, zut, zutwith London Symphony Chorus, Stephen Westrop (chorus master)
HERBERT HOWELLS (1892-1983)
An English Masswith Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Choir, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Concerto for string orchestrawith Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Hymnus Paradisiwith Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Choir
Piano Concerto No 2 in C minorwith Kathryn Stott (piano), Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Three Dances for violin and orchestra, Op 7with Malcolm Stewart (violin), Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
SIR ALEXANDER CAMPBELL MACKENZIE (1847-1935)
Violin Concerto in C sharp minor, Op 32with Malcolm Stewart (violin), Royal Scottish National Orchestra
JOHN MCCABE (b1939)
Concerto for flute and orchestrawith Emily Beynon (flute), BBC Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 4 'Of Time and the River'with BBC Symphony Orchestra
ROBERT SIMPSON (1921-1997)
Symphony No 1with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 10with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 10with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 2with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 2with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 3with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 4with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 4with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 5with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 6with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 6with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 7with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 7with Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 8with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 8with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Symphony No 9with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 9with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 9, illustrated talk by the composerwith Robert Simpson (narrator), Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Symphony No 9, illustrated talk by the composerwith Robert Simpson (narrator), Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra

Alphabetical listing of all musical works

A Celtic Symphony (Bantock)
A grim old king  
A Hebridean Symphony (Bantock)
A lady-witch there lived on Atlas mountain  
After many a dusty mile  
An English Mass (Howells)
And every nymph of stream and spreading tree  
And old Silenus, shaking a green stick  
And then she called out of the hollow turrets  
Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord  
Bridal Song  
Camel Caravan  
Caristiona (Bantock)
Christus (Bantock)
Cloud, if as thou dost melt  
Come! give it a lift, our old-time march-song  
Concerto for flute and orchestra (McCabe)
Concerto for oboe and strings No 1 in C (Boughton)
Concerto for string orchestra (Howells)
Cuchullan's Lament  
Dante and Beatrice (Bantock)
Daugher of Zeus  
Death of Oneiza: Appassionato con dolore  
Death on the hills, Op 72 (Elgar)
Deep in my soul  
Dishevelled and in tears, go, song of mine  
Dreams all too brief  
Evening Scene (Elgar)
Evening Song  
Evening, thou bringest all that bright morning scattered  
Evil lost for ever  
Feasting I watch  
Fifine at the fair (Bantock)
Five Partsongs from the Greek anthology, Op 45 (Elgar)
For she was beautiful  
Four Choral Songs, Op 53 (Elgar)
Glory be to God on high  
Go, song of mine, Op 57 (Elgar)
Hark! I hear the tramp of thousands  
Helena Variations (Bantock)
Holy is the true light  
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts  
Hymn to Aphrodite  
Hymnus Paradisi (Howells)
I believe in one God, the Father Almighty  
I heard a voice from heaven  
I loved thee once, Atthis, long ago  
I met at eve the Prince of Sleep  
I wander through the woodlands  
In a dream, I spake  
Introduction. The powers of evil: Mesto e lugubre  
It's oh to be a wild wind  
Kishmul's Galley  
Lift up your hearts  
Love's Tempest  
Muse of the golden throne  
My Love Dwelt in a Northern Land, Op 18 No 3 (Elgar)
O fair, O lovely, As the sweet apple  
O lamb of God  
O Wild West Wind  
Omar Khayyám (Bantock)
Oneiza's theme: Moderato sostenuto  
Overture to a Greek Tragedy (Bantock)
Owls, an Epitaph  
Pagan Symphony (Bantock)
Peer of gods he seems  
Piano Concerto No 2 in C minor (Howells)
Pierrot of the Minute 'A comedy overture to a dramatic phantasy of Ernest Dowson' (Bantock)
Prelude  
Prelude  
Processional (Bantock)
Requiem aeternam  
Sanctus – I will lift up mine eyes  
Sapphic Poem (Bantock)
Sappho (Bantock)
Serenade  
Silent lay the sapphire ocean  
Stand face to face, friend  
Symphony No 1 (Simpson)
Symphony No 10 (Simpson)
Symphony No 2 (Simpson)
Symphony No 3 (Simpson)
Symphony No 3 in B minor (Boughton)
Symphony No 4 (Simpson)
Symphony No 4 'Of Time and the River' (McCabe)
Symphony No 5 (Simpson)
Symphony No 6 (Simpson)
Symphony No 7 (Simpson)
Symphony No 8 (Simpson)
Symphony No 9 (Simpson)
Symphony No 9, illustrated talk by the composer (Simpson)
Thalaba sets out again on his mighty quest: Poco allegro  
Thalaba the destroyer (Bantock)
Thalaba wanders desolately amid the tombs: Molto lento  
Thalaba's death, and reprise of Oneiza's theme: Poco più lento  
Thalaba's fatal languor: Poco lento  
Thalaba's theme: Allegro con fuoco  
The Cyprian Goddess (Bantock)
The deep recesses of her odorous dwelling  
The Fountain  
The Herald (Elgar)
The last ecstasy of faith and love: Pesante e risoluto  
The Lord is my shepherd  
The moon has set  
The Prince of Sleep (Elgar)
The Reveille, Op 54 (Elgar)
The Sea Reivers (Bantock)
The sheep-bell tolleth curfew-time  
The Shower  
The Song of Songs (Bantock)
The unthrift sun shot vital gold  
The Wanderer (Elgar)
The wilderness and the solitary place  
The Witch of Atlas (Bantock)
There is sweet music  
Three Dances for violin and orchestra, Op 7 (Howells)
'Tis said, she was first changed into a vapour  
To those she saw most beautiful  
Two Choral Songs, Op 71 (Elgar)
Two Choral Songs, Op 73 (Elgar)
Two Heroic Ballads (Bantock)
Violin Concerto in C sharp minor, Op 32 (Mackenzie)
Weary wind of the west (Elgar)
Wedding and brief happiness of love: Meno mosso  
What is that? … Nothing  
Whether I find thee  
Why o'er the dark'ning hill-slopes  
Yea, cast me from heights  
Zeinab's theme: Molto più lento  
Zut, zut, zut (Elgar)
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