Haack [Haacke, Haak, Haake], Friedrich Wilhelm

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Holst, Henry

(b Saeby, 25 July 1899; d Copenhagen, 19 Oct 1991). Danish violinist. He studied at the Royal Danish Conservatory and for a year with Telmányi before going on to Willy Hess in Berlin. He made his début in Copenhagen in 1919 and increased his reputation in 1921 when he played three concertos at one concert with the Berlin PO. In 1923 he became leader of the Berlin PO under Furtwängler. He joined the staff of the RMCM in 1931. Holst’s concerto repertory was extensive and included Walton’s Violin Concerto of which he gave the first British performance. In 1941 he formed the Philharmonia Quartet. After World War II he taught at the RCM (1945–54) until he took over the violin class at the Royal Danish Conservatory; his Method of Scale Study was published in Copenhagen in 1960. From 1961 to 1963 he gave masterclasses at the National University of Fine Arts and Music in Tokyo. Both as a teacher and a performer, Holst was a good representative of the German school of violin playing. The outstanding feature of Holst’s playing was his very full tone, achieved through a strong and steady bow arm. His instrument was made by Guarneri ‘del Gesù’ in 1742.


J. Creighton: Discopaedia of the Violin, 1889–1971 (Toronto,1974)

M. Campbell: The Great Violinists (London, 1980)

Obituaries: M. Campbell: The Guardian (21 Nov 1991); A. Inglis: The Independent (25 Nov 1991)


Holst, Imogen (Clare)

(b Richmond, Surrey, 12 April 1907; d Aldeburgh, 9 March 1984). English writer on music, conductor, composer and administrator, daughter of Gustav Holst. She studied at the RCM, where she held a composition scholarship for tuition with George Dyson and Gordon Jacob. She won the Cobbett Prize in 1928 and the Octavia travelling scholarship in 1930. Following a period of teaching, she became a traveller for the Council for the Encouragement of Music and the Arts (CEMA) in 1940, and in 1942 was appointed Director of Music at Dartington Hall. She is well known for folksong arrangements, but her serious compositions remained underestimated and largely unknown until the 1980s. Her earliest works were influenced by her father but her own musical language developed great individuality during the 1940s. Her music is linear in construction, often featuring the minor 2nd, with quartal harmony adding to its tonal ambiguity; her increasingly personal use of scales and simultaneous major and minor 3rds extends to polymodality. Examples from this period include the Serenade (1942) and String Quartet no.1 (1946); later examples such as the Duo for Viola and Piano (1968) progress to 12-note experimentation.

During her appointment as amanuensis to Britten (1952–64) she produced the piano reductions of Noye’s Fludde and the War Requiem; her conductorship of the Purcell Singers involved much editing of Renaissance and Baroque music, and she continued as Artistic Director of the Aldeburgh Festival until 1977, when she retired to devote more time to writing about her father. She was made a CBE in 1975. A renewed enthusiasm for composition inspired some of her finest music, such as the String Quintet of 1982.


(selective list)


Meddling in Magic (ballet, after J.W. von Goethe), 1930

Love in a Mist or The Blue Haired Stranger (ballet); London, Rudolf Steiner Hall, 19 Jan 1935; music lost

Young Beichan (puppet op, 7 scenes, B. de Zoete), 1945; Dartington, Devon, sum. 1946; withdrawn

Benedick and Beatrice (op, 12 scenes), 1950; Dartington, 20 July 1951

other works

Orch: Suite, small orch, 1927; Suite, F, str orch, 1927; Persephone, ov., 1929; Conc., vn, str orch, 1935; Suite, str orch, 1943; Variations on ‘Loth to Depart’, str orch, 1963; Trianon Suite, 1965; Woodbridge Suite, 1969; Joyce’s Divertimento, 1976; Deben Calendar, 1977

Chbr: Qnt, ob, str, 1928; Str Qt ‘Phantasy’, 1928; Sonata, vn, vc, 1930; Str Trio, 1944; 2 str qts: no.1, 1946, no.2, 1950; Str Trio, 1962; Fall of the Leaf, vc, 1963; Duo, va, pf, 1968; Str Qnt, 1982

Vocal: A Hymne to Christ (J. Donne), SATB, 1940; 4 Songs, S, pf, 1944; 5 Songs, SSSAA, 1944; Lavabo inter Innocentes, SSSAA, 1955; The Sun’s Journey (cant., T. Dekker, J. Ford), SA, small orch, 1965; Hallo my Fancy (W. Cleland), Ct, T, SSBB, 1972; Homage to William Morris, B, db, 1984

Works for brass, wind band, rec, chorus with orch; many arrs. for chorus, orch and chbr groups

Principal publishers: Boosey & Hawkes, Cramer, Faber, Novello, OUP


Gustav Holst: a Biography (London, 1938/R, 2/1969/R)

The Music of Gustav Holst (London, 1951, 3/1975/R)

with B. Britten: The Story of Music (London, 1958, rev. 2/1968 as The Wonderful World of Music; Ger. trans., 1969; Fr. trans., 1971)

ed.: Henry Purcell, 1659–1695: Essays on his Music (London, 1959)

ed., with U. Vaughan Williams: Heirs and Rebels (London, 1959/R)

Henry Purcell (London, 1961)

Tune: the Structure of Melody (London, 1962/R)

An ABC of Music (London, 1963/R; Sp. trans., 1989; Ger. trans., 1992)

Bach (London, 1964; Jap. trans., 1975)

Britten (London, 1966, 3/1980)

Byrd (London, 1972)

Conducting a Choir: a Guide for Amateurs (London, 1973/R)

Holst (London, 1974, 2/1981)


C.G. Tinker: ‘Imogen Holst’s Music, 1962–84’, Tempo, no.166 (1988), 22–7

C.G. Tinker: The Musical Output of Imogen Holst (diss., U. of Lancaster, 1990) [incl. catalogue of works]


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