Haack [Haacke, Haak, Haake], Friedrich Wilhelm

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Horst, Anthon van der

(b Amsterdam, 20 June 1899; d Hilversum, 7 March 1965). Dutch composer, conductor and organist. An extremely talented child, at the age of four he was already playing piano duet arrangements of Beethoven symphonies with his father. At the age of ten he appeared in his first concerts. From 1915 to 1919 he attended the Amsterdam Conservatory, where he was the first Dutch organist to receive the prix d'excellence. His teachers were J.B. Charles de Pauw (organ) and Bernard Zweers (composition). He gained a great reputation as an organist and accompanist, playing on important historical organs in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands Antilles. In 1929 he recorded for the Columbia label in the Central Hall, London. From 1935 to 1964 he taught the organ at the Amsterdam Conservatory.

From the age of about 20, van der Horst conducted several choirs in Utrecht, Leiden, The Hague and Amsterdam. From 1931 until his death he was conductor of the Nederlandse Bachvereniging, whose annual performances of Bach's Passions at the Grote Kerk in Naarden became internationally famous and marked the beginning of historical performing practice in the Netherlands. For his study of the B minor Mass, written in collaboration with Gerardus van der Leeuw, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Groningen.

Van der Horst himself considered his activity as a composer to be the most important part of his work. His output comprises more than 100 opus numbers: organ works, songs, chamber music, three symphonies (the last with chorus) and several choral compositions, with or without instrumental accompaniment, the most important of which are the eight works entitled Choros. He developed his own tonal language, the ‘modus conjunctus’, in which two centres at a distance of a diminished 5th act as tonic and dominant, analogous to day and night, male and female. The resultant eight-note scale, consisting of alternating tones and semitones (e.g. C–D–E–F–F–G–A–B), is equivalent to the octatonic scale of Messiaen's second mode of limited transposition, though the philosophy behind it is quite different.


(selective list)

Choral: Mass, solo vv, 2 choruses, boys' chorus, orch, org, 1915; 2 Fragments from the Song of Songs, female vv, fl, hn, 1920; Choros I, S, Bar, chorus, orch, 1932; Te Deum, Bar, 2 choruses, orch, org, 1945; Holland, nar, chorus, orch, 1950; Alianora, Mez, A, Bar, chorus, orch, 1952; Choros II (C. Péguy: La nuit), chorus, orch, 1954; Choros III, chorus, org, 1955; Choros IV (Whitsun Cantata), 3 choruses, wind orch, 1956; Choros V, chorus, orch, 1956; Choros VI, solo vv, chorus, orch, org, 1957; Choros VII, chorus, org, 1959; Hommage to the BBC, chorus, large orch, 1962; Choros VIII, chorus, orch, 1964

Orch: Sym., 1939; Nocturne funèbre, 1950; Conc. per organo romantico, 1952; Conc. spagnuolo, vn, orch, 1953; 3 études symphoniques, 1954; Divertimento pittorale, 1955; Symfonie II, 1956; Symfonie III, solo vv, chorus, orch, 1957; Conc., org, str, 1960; Réflexions sonores, 1964; Salutation joyeuse, 1965

Solo vocal: Oratio Moysi, S, org/orch, 1928; 7 Italiaanse liederen, 5, pf, 1935; Hymne ‘Blijdschap’ (G. Gezelle), 1935; Le ciel en nuit s'est déplié, v, pf

Chbr and solo inst: Suite, vc, 1941; Suite in modo conjuncto, org, 1943; Partite diverse sopra ‘O nostre dieu’ (Ps viii), org, 1947; Sonata in modo conjuncto, org/hpd, 1948, arr. 2 pf/fl, vn, vc, 1948; Thema met variaties in modo conjuncto, pf, 1950; Suite, 31-tone org, 1953; Thème, variations et fugue, fl, vn, va, 1957; Etude de concert, org, 1963


Principal publisher: Donemus


with G. van der Leeuw: Bach's Hoogmis (Wageningen, 1948)

Plaats en betekenis van het weten in de wereld van de muziek (Groningen, 1948)


J. Geraedts: ‘Anthon van der Horst: Réflexions sonores’, Sonorum speculum, no.21 (1964), 35–41

J. Wouters: ‘Anthon van der Horst’, Sonorum speculum, no.23 (1965), 1–17

G. Oost: Anthon van der Horst, 1899–1965: leven en werk (Alphen aan den Rijn, 1992)


Horst, Louis

(b Kansas City, 12 Jan 1884; d New York, 23 Jan 1964). American composer. In 1892 the Horsts moved to San Francisco, where Louis attended the Adams Cosmopolitan School and studied the violin and piano. After working as a performer and dance accompanist from 1902 until 1915, he served as the music director of the Denishawn dance company (1915–25). In 1925 he studied composition in Vienna with Stöhr and in New York with Max Persin and Riegger. Horst became music director of Martha Graham’s company in 1926, and his tenure lasted until 1948; during these years he composed many dance scores for Graham, including Primitive Mysteries (1931), Frontier (1935) and El penitente (1940). Horst worked with an economy of means in his composing process, often using simple melodic phrases on the keyboard with the breath of woodwinds and strong rhythmic accompaniment of percussion, resisting any hint of romanticism he associated with stringed instruments.

During a career that embraced performing, composing, conducting and critical writing, Horst became one of the chief architects of American modern dance in the 20th century: he encouraged dancers to choreograph their own work and composers such as Copland, Cowell, Norman Lloyd and Riegger to write music for dance. Martha Graham relied on his expertise and was his intimate for decades. Horst, however, also influenced many other important dancers, including Agnes de Mille, Doris Humphrey, Anna Sokolow, Helen Tamiris and Paul Taylor.

Horst reversed the traditional relationship of music and dance, in which dance works were choreographed to independently composed musical works. He was the first to teach formal dance composition to professionals, beginning with actors at the Neighborhood Playhouse, New York, in 1929. His courses related choreographic principles to musical forms and applied ideas developed in music and the visual arts to dance composition to foster aesthetic understanding and experimentation. These intensive courses were held at Bennington Summer School of the Dance (1934–42), the American Dance Festival at Connecticut College (1948–63) and the Juilliard School (1951–64). He founded, with Ralph Taylor, and edited the journal Dance Observer (1934–64), and published Pre-classic Dance Forms (1937) and, with Carroll Russell, Modern Dance Forms in Relation to the Other Arts (1961).


E.E. Pease: Louis Horst: his Theories on Modern Dance Composition (diss., U. of Michigan, 1953)

J.M. Soares: Louis Horst: Musician in a Dancer’s World (Durham, NC, 1992)

D. Madden: You can call me Louis, not Mr Horst (Amsterdam, 1997)


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