Composer of 'H'



Patrick Hadley (1899-1973)

An English composer and a conductor. Middle name is Arthur Sheldon. He was born in Cambridge on 5th of March in 1899. After the graduation from Winchester colledge, he went to the French front because of the world war I, and lost his right foot under the knee in 1918. After the world war I, he entered the Pembroke College at the Cambridge University, as well as Royal Colledge of Music where he studied under Charles Wood and Vaughan-Williams. He also studied conducting under Adrian Boult and Malcom Sargent there. From 1925 for thirteen years, he became a faculty in Royal Colledge of music, and subsequently became a fellow at Gonville and Caius Colledges of Cambridge University. In the world war II era, he was appointed as the conductor from Cambridge University Musical Society, and have conducted many Delius works. In 1946, the achivement made him to become the director of the society which he remained until 1962. As a composer, he applied and unified the idiom of English modernists with his sense from the close relationships with bax, Moeran and Rawsthone. In spite of his handicap, he was a naturalist and loved to hike. Such English natural scenescape reflects his compositional diction. He passed away in Heacham on 17th of December in 1973 (2006 ©K.S.).


Main Works

Orchestral kinder scout: sketch for orchestra (1923)
one morning in spring: sketch for small orchestra (1942) {small-orch}
Songs scene from 'the woodlanders' (1925) {sop, chamber} {sop, chamber}...Text: T. Hardy
Mariana (1937) {msp, chamber}...
Text: A. Tennyson
lines from 'The Cenci' (1951) {sop, chamber}...
Text: P.B. Shelley
Choir symphonic ballad 'the trees so high' (1931) {btn, choir, orch}
la belle dame sans Merci (1934-1935) {tnr, choir, orch} ...
Text: J.Keats
my beloved spake (1938) {choir, p, org}
travellers (1942) {sop, choir, orch} ...
Text: A. Pryce-Jones
the hills (1944) {sop, tnr, bas, choir, orch} ...
Text: Hadley
Fen and Flood (1954-1955) {sop, bas, choir, orch} ...
Text: C.L. Cudworth
Connemara (1958) {sop, tnr, bas, choir, orch}...
Text: Cudworth
the gate hangs high (1960-1961) {3vo, hrp} ...
Text: Cudworth
cantana for lent / lenten meditations (1962) {tnr, bas, choir, orch, org}
Reference Wetherell, E. 2004. Patrick Hadley. In 'New-grove online'. Oxford Univ.Press.


Hadley Disc Review


"The Island (Sainton) : The Trees so High - Symphonic Ballad (Hadley)" (Chandos : CHAN 9181)
Matthias Bamert (cond) David Wilson-Johnson (btn) Philharmonia Orchestra & Chorus

Swiss-born conductor, Bamert had worked as the assistant of G.Szell in Cleveland before was assigned as director of Basel philharmonic in 1977. Then he became proncipal guest of Royal Scottish Symphony in 1985 as well as the music director of London Mozert Players in 1993. This first book of Sainton-Hadley connection partly explains why he was welcomed in England although of his native country. As far as I know, these two discs still provides only oppotunity of listenning Sainton's works until now (in 2006). 'The Island' beame the work that brought the composer's fame. In 1942, it was performed by BBC Symphony. Henry Wood, a famous Englush conductor listened it and highly praised. Then in 1948, it was again performed on Cheltenham Music festival under the direction of famous Barbirolli. It became one of the cherished works through 1960s. In fact, the work bravely tells the author's masterly through its sophisticated key-change technique and harmonic coloration that resemble with Debussy in 'La demoiselle elue' era, whereas its rhythmic content is clearer and massive such that of Moeran and Bax. It is hard to believe the works has written by a viola player bacause of its skillful writing although the middle extended section can be polished more and the sudden ending is too abrupt. The coupling Hadley is a pupil of V-Williams. He is also a foggotten composer although the degree is less than the coupled one. The work shows that he was far feminine - modest english romantist. More pastorale-like and my-paced german romantic form indicates he was a naturalist and regionalist. Reflecting his way of life, the density of the content is lower than other composers because of his tranquility, it may change into his virtue if we stop the attitude of evaluating music like we spend the busy urban life.

"Nadir / The Dream of Marionette (Sainton) : La Belle dame sans Merci / One Morning in Spring / Lenten Meditations (Hadley)" (Chandos : CHAN 9539)
Matthias Bamert (cond) Neill Archer (tnr) Stephen Richardson (bass) Philharmonia Orchestra & Chorus
4 years later from the first book in 1992 as above, here we had another book of Sainton-Hadley connection in 1996. As you may know already, the conductor had started to record the series of Martins to the same label which made his international fame getting much better. His well-ballanced way of conducting can be seen on these two recordings. 'Nadir' subtitled as symphonic tragedy which was written in 1942, is based on an episode of the composer that he saw a child's sudden death by bombing in Bristol while he was in military service. Such an motif apparently reflects the work. Comparing with 'The island', that can be described as bright and vivid themes that make the image of the work to be grasped easily, Nadir consists of far complicated rhythm which makes the work nationalist-dominant idiom. The sophisticated French modernist diction was replaced by Bax-Tschaikovski like heavy and dignified mood become dominant in this work. On the contrary, Marionette, written in 1929, can be characterized as French romantic feminine mood. Above all, the third movement 'dream of the Marionette' is typical ball-room dance (in a royal palace) tune in form whereas the harmony is former-Debussian rooted. Then we can conclude that he started to establish his diction from French-modernist to English modernism since he gradually came to be aware of his natinality as a composer. Hadley's coupling works shows the same tendency as we have seen in first disc. He takes more time to tell his musical language than other composers, and with hints of latter Holst's shade, he develops peaceful and tranquil at his pace. In case you might feel somewhat difficult to grasp the image of the work, it may be because of the performance. It is regrettable that the articulation of the chorus is hard to be praised.

(2006. 2. 7. uploaded)