Abstracts of issue 12-13 (2000)

Ion Zottos

Clement Harris, Paradise Lost, and its Performances in Greece

Section 1 deals with music in Victorian, and to a lesser extent with Edwardian England, with Liszt and the symphonic poem tradition. Section 2 is a synopsis of Milton’s Paradise Lost, with some critical commentary on the epic poem. A brief biographical note on Clement Harris (1871-1896), his voyage to the Far East (with Siegfried Wagner), Egypt and Greece, the inspiration and composition of Paradise Lost, A Symphonic Poem for Orchestra, and his death in Epirus, near Jannena, for the Greek cause, at the age of 26, constitute Sections 3-4, while in Section 5 an analysis of the score is attempted. The final Section (6) centers around the commemorative performance of Paradise Lost at the Herod Atticus Theatre in 1937, under the baton of Dimitri Mitropoulos, in the presence of members of the Greek Royal Family and the composer’s sister, Mrs Graham; it ends with the commemoration of Harris’ centenary in Athens and Messolonghi (talks and recitals), a recent performance of Paradise Lost at the Athens Megaron, and with appraisal of the composer’s œuvre and posthumous reputation.

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