Dennis Brain

Biography

Born: May 17, 1921; London, England   Died: September 1, 1957; Hatfield, England  
Few instrumentalists of the twenieth century did more to establish a solo role for an instrument than Dennis Brain. By age 36, he had helped restore the four Mozart and two Strauss horn concertos to the repertory, inspired Hindemith, Britten, and others to write for his instrument, and generally set the standard for twentieth century horn soloists.

Born in 1921, Brain was raised in a London horn-playing family. Both his father, Aubrey
Read more Brain, and his uncle played professionally, as did their father, Alfred Brain Sr., himself the son of a horn player. (His other brother, Leonard, was a noted oboist.) In 1936, he began studies with his father at the Royal Academy of Music, and two years later made an acclaimed London debut as a soloist in Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 1 with the Busch Chamber Players.

Brain soon became a frequent soloist with the Royal Air Force Central Band, with which he filled the position of principal horn during World War II. His growing reputation was cemented during a goodwill tour of America, during which he received an invitation from Leopold Stokowski to join the Philadelphia Orchestra after the war. This was just one of several invitations that Brain received, however, and he eventually took the job of principal horn with the Royal Philharmonic. Later he moved on to become principal horn of the Philharmonia Orchestra.

All the while, Brain was a sought-after horn soloist and chamber musician. During the postwar years, he made a series of now-classic recordings of concertos by Mozart, Strauss, and Hindemith, as well as of various chamber and recital works. Among the additions to the horn literature directly inspired by Brain were works by Britten, Hindemith, Malcom Arnold, and Gordon Jacob. His virtuosic command of the instrument stimulated two of Britten's greatest chamber works, the Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings (1943) and the Canticle III (1953).

Brain took up conducting as well and founded a wind quintet that won him considerable fame. It was following a concert by this quintet at the Edinburgh Festival on September 1, 1957, that Brain was killed in a car accident on his way back to London. Benjamin Britten has written of that fateful night that "it has robbed us of an artist with the unique combination of superb technical command of his instrument, great musicianship, a lively and intelligent interest in music of all sorts, and a fine performing temperament, coupled with a charming personality." Read less

Biography

Born: May 17, 1921; London, England   Died: September 1, 1957; Hatfield, England  
Few instrumentalists of the twenieth century did more to establish a solo role for an instrument than Dennis Brain. By age 36, he had helped restore the four Mozart and two Strauss horn concertos to the repertory, inspired Hindemith, Britten, and others to write for his instrument, and generally set the standard for twentieth century horn soloists.

Born in 1921, Brain was raised in a London horn-playing family. Both his father, Aubrey
Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
I. Allegro
II. Romanze
III. Allegro
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Prologue
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Pastoral
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Nocturne
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Elegy
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Dirge
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Hymn
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Sonnet
Britten: Serenade for tenor, horn & strings, Op.31 - Epilogue
Horn Concerto No. 1 in D Major, K.412 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in D Major, K.412 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Rondo (Allegro) (K.514 version, arr. Süßmayr)
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E Flat Major, K.417 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro maestoso
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E Flat Major, K.417 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Andante
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E Flat Major, K.417 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Rondo
Horn Concerto No. 3 in E Flat Major, K.447 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Concerto for Horn and Orchestra No. 3 in E flat major, KV447 (1997 Remastered Version): Second movement: Romance (Larghetto)
Horn Concerto No. 3 in E Flat Major, K.447 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro moderato
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Romanza (Andante)
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Rondo (Allegro vivace)
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Largo - Allegro moderato
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Larghetto
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Rondo (Allegro)
Quintet for Piano and Wind in E flat K452 (1990 Remastered Version): I. Largo - Allegro moderato
Quintet for Piano and Wind in E flat K452 (1990 Remastered Version): II. Larghetto
Quintet for Piano and Wind in E flat K452 (1990 Remastered Version): III. Rondo (Allegro)
Concerto for Horn and Orchestra No. 4 in E flat major, KV495 (1997 Digital Remaster): Third movement: Rondo (Allegro vivace)
Horn Concerto No.4 in E flat, K.495 (2008 Remastered Version): I. Allegro moderato (cadenza by Norman del Mar)
Horn Concerto No.4 in E flat, K.495 (2008 Remastered Version): II. Romanza: Andante
Horn Concerto No.4 in E flat, K.495 (2008 Remastered Version): III. Rondo: Allegro vivace
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat K417 (2008 Remastered Version): I. Allegro maestoso
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat K417 (2008 Remastered Version): II. Andante
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat K417 (2008 Remastered Version): III. Rondo
Adagio & Allegro in A flat, Op.70 (2008 Remastered Version): I. Adagio
Adagio & Allegro in A flat, Op.70 (2008 Remastered Version): II. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in D Major, K.412 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in D Major, K.412 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Rondo (Allegro) (K.514 version, arr. Süßmayr)
Horn Concerto No. 3 in E Flat Major, K.447 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Concerto for Horn and Orchestra No. 3 in E flat major, KV447 (1997 Remastered Version): Second movement: Romance (Larghetto)
Horn Concerto No. 3 in E Flat Major, K.447 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Allegro
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): I. Largo - Allegro moderato
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): II. Larghetto
Quintet in E flat for Piano and Wind, K452 (1997 Remastered Version): III. Rondo (Allegro)
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Remastered Version): II. Andante
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Remastered Version): III. Allegro - Rondo (Allegro)
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Remastered Version): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Remastered Version): II. Andante con moto
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Remastered Version): III. Rondo (Allegro molto)
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Remastered Version): I. Moderately fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Remastered Version): II. Very fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Remastered Version): III. Very slow - Moderately fast - Fast - Lively - Very slow
Ein musikalischer spaß in F major K.522 (2008 Remastered Version): I Allegro
Ein musikalischer spaß in F major K.522 (2008 Remastered Version): II Menuetto (Maestoso & Trio)
Ein musikalischer spaß in F major K.522 (2008 Remastered Version): III Adagio cantabile
Ein musikalischer spaß in F major K.522 (2008 Remastered Version): IV Presto
Divertimento No. 14 in B flat K270 (2008 Remastered Version): Allegro molto
Divertimento No. 14 in B flat K270 (2008 Remastered Version): Andantino
Divertimento No. 14 in B flat K270 (2008 Remastered Version): Menuetto: Moderato & Trio
Divertimento No. 14 in B flat K270 (2008 Remastered Version): Presto
Divertimento No.16 in E flat, K.289 (2008 Remastered Version): II. Minuet
Divertimento No.16 in E flat, K.289 (2008 Remastered Version): III. Adagio
Horn Concerto (1950) (1994 Digital Remaster): I. Moderately fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (1994 Digital Remaster): II. Very fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (1994 Digital Remaster): III. Very slow
I. Allegro
II. Romance: Larghetto
III. Allegro
I. Allegro maestoso
II. Andante
III. Rondo: Allegro
Prologue
Pastoral
Nocturne
Elegy
Dirge
Hymn
Sonnet
Epilogue
I. Allegro
II. Romance: Larghetto
III. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Andante
Horn Concerto No. 1 in E flat major Op. 11 (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Allegro - Rondo (Allegro)
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Allegro
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Andante con moto
Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major AV132 (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Rondo (Allegro molto)
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Moderately fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Very fast
Horn Concerto (1950) (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Very slow - Moderately fast - Fast - Lively - Very slow
Concert Music Op. 50 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Mässig schnell, mit Kraft - Sehr breit, aber stets fliessend
Concert Music Op. 50 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Lebhaft - Langsam - Im ersten Zeitmass (Lebhaft)
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 - Remaster): I. Allegro moderato
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 - Remaster): II. Romanza (Andante)
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E Flat Major, K.495 (1997 - Remaster): III. Rondo (Allegro vivace)


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