Alfreda Hodgson

Biography

Born: June 7, 1940; Morecombe, England   Died: April 16, 1992; Morecombe, England  
The tragically short-lived Alfreda Hodgson had become one of England's most-respected mezzo-sopranos, regarded with much affection by many colleagues and conductors who were all inspired by her deep and intuitive musicianship. Her voice was a full mezzo-soprano (or mezzo-contralto) of great warmth, if sometimes one of imperfect steadiness. Her interpretations, however, frequently probed far beneath surface elements to reach a life-altering Read more musical truth. While she occasionally sang in opera, her greatest imprint was made on the concert stage, both in recital and in orchestral performance. Many recordings survive to attest to her stature as a singer. Hodgson received her formal training at the Northern School of Music in Manchester and made her first concert appearance in Liverpool in 1961. Two years later, she made her London debut, after which engagements followed with many of England's principal orchestras. Within the next decade, she traveled to America and Israel, continually expanding her repertory. In 1974, she accepted a contract with the English National Opera and she later sang at Covent Garden (1983), but she principally remained a concert artist. Her interests were wide ranging, from music of the Baroque to scores by contemporary composers. Within Hodgson's recorded legacy are many significant items. Her Das Lied von der Erde with conductor Jascha Horenstein is regarded as among the best ever. Hodgson's heart-piercing poignancy is matched by Horenstein's own in leading the live performance. The mezzo's singing of the alto arias in Robert Shaw's final recording of Messiah was striking, as was her work in an English-language recording of Bach's St. John Passion led by Benjamin Britten. Hodgson recorded Elgar's The Kingdom twice and left a memento of her way with the music of Michael Tippett when she recorded Sosostris' aria under the direction of the composer himself. Other important discs included those devoted to an English-language Bach St. Matthew Passion directed by David Willcocks, madrigals by Monteverdi, and Rossini's Petite messe solonnelle conducted by Laszlo Heltay. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 39 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Elgar: The Apostles / Hickox, London Symphony Orchestra & Chorus
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 24149 Release Date: 08/26/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar
    Performer:  Alison Hargan,  Alfreda Hodgson,  David Rendall,  Stephen Roberts  ... 
    Conductor:  Richard Hickox
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Chorus
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  • 2.
    Britten The Performer - Complete Decca Recordings
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001922102 Release Date: 10/22/2013   Number of Discs: 27
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Henry Purcell,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Adrian Thompson,  John Tobin,  Jenny Hill,  Robert Tear  ... 
    Conductor:  Benjamin Britten
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Wandsworth School Boys' Choir,  Wandsworth School Choir  ... 
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  • 3.
    Britten: Spring Symphony; Welcome Ode; Psalm 150
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 10782 Release Date: 07/30/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Benjamin Britten
    Performer:  Alfreda Hodgson,  Elisabeth Gale,  Martyn Hill
    Conductor:  Richard Hickox
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Chorus,  Southend Boys Choir
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  • 4.
    Dream Of Gerontius
    Label: Regis   Catalog: 1079 Release Date: 07/12/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar
    Performer:  Robert Tear,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Benjamin Luxon
    Conductor:  Sir Alexander Gibson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Scottish National Chorus,  Royal Scottish National Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Elgar: Dream Of Gerontius (Abridged) / Gibson, Tear, Hodgson, Luxon
    Label: Regis   Catalog: 1322 Release Date: 07/12/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar
    Performer:  Alfreda Hodgson,  Robert Tear,  Benjamin Luxon
    Conductor:  Sir Alexander Gibson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Scottish National Chorus,  Royal Scottish National Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Elgar: Complete EMI Recordings / Sir Adrian Boult
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 35922 Release Date: 07/02/2013   Number of Discs: 19
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Yehudi Menuhin,  Pablo Casals,  Paul Tortelier,  Ida Haendel  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Adrian Boult,  Sir Philip Ledger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  BBC Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 7.
    Rachmaninov: The Bells; Prokofiev: Alexander Nevsky / Evgeny Svetlanov
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5069 Release Date: 05/29/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Daniil Shtoda,  Yelena Prokina,  Sergei Leiferkus,  Alfreda Hodgson
    Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra,  BBC Symphony Chorus,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 8.
    Handel: Jephtha / Rolfe Johnson, Marshall, Kirkby, Marriner
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4804916 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel
    Performer:  Emma Kirkby,  Christopher Keyte,  Margaret Marshall,  Paul Esswood  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chorus
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  • 9.
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 314 Release Date: 10/01/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Ives
    Performer:  John Elwes,  Hazel Holt,  John Noble,  Alfreda Hodgson
    Conductor:  Roger Norrington
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  London Heinrich Schütz Choir
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  • 10.
    Mahler: The Complete Works
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 08985 Release Date: 06/29/2010   Number of Discs: 16
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Thomas Hampson,  Wolfram Rieger,  Christa Ludwig,  Fritz Wunderlich  ... 
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Otto Klemperer,  Klaus Tennstedt  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 11.
    Haydn: The Creation, Salve Regina / Dorati, Popp, Moll, Hollweg
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 421605 Release Date: 06/25/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn
    Performer:  Benjamin Luxon,  Helena Döse,  Kurt Moll,  Werner Hollweg  ... 
    Conductor:  Antal Doráti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Brighton Festival Chorus,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Elgar: The Dream Of Gerontius / Luxon, Tear, Gibson
    Label: Crd Records   Catalog: 33267 Release Date: 05/01/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar
    Performer:  Alfreda Hodgson,  Robert Tear,  Benjamin Luxon
    Conductor:  Sir Alexander Gibson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Scottish National Orchestra,  Scottish National Chorus
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  • 13.
    Purcell: Fairy Queen, Dido And Aeneas / Britten, Bedford
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 468561 Release Date: 09/02/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Norma Burrowes,  Mary Wells,  Ian Partridge,  Charles Brett  ... 
    Conductor:  Benjamin Britten,  Steuart Bedford
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian Opera Chorus,  English Chamber Orchestra,  London Opera Chorus  ... 
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  • 14.
    The Essential Vaughan Williams / Willcocks, Boult, Bean, Barbirolli, Et Al
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 07992 Release Date: 06/24/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ralph Vaughan Williams
    Performer:  Robin Doveton,  Nigel Perrin,  John Eaton,  David Van Asch  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks,  Stephen Cleobury,  Sir Adrian Boult,  Sir Philip Ledger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bach Choir,  Cambridge King's College Choir,  The Wallace Collection  ... 
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  • 15.
    Ireland: Songs / Luxon, Mitchinson, Hodgson, Rowlands
    Label: Lyrita   Catalog: 2261 Release Date: 11/13/2007   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  John Ireland
    Performer:  Benjamin Luxon,  Alan Rowlands,  John Mitchinson,  Alfreda Hodgson
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  • 16.
    Elgar - The Collector's Edition [30-Disc Set]
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 03603 Release Date: 11/06/2007   Number of Discs: 30
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Charles Hubert Parry,  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Hugh Bean,  David Parkhouse,  John Ogdon,  Herbert Sumsion  ... 
    Conductor:  Vernon Handley,  Sir Charles Groves,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Sir Edward Elgar  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Allegri String Quartet  ... 
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  • 17.
    Mahler: Symphonies No 1-10, Das Klagende Lied, Etc / Rattle
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 00721 Release Date: 10/02/2007   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Peter Seiffert,  Thomas Hampson,  Helena Döse,  Alfreda Hodgson  ... 
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra,  City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $95.99
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  • 18.
    Maw: Scenes And Arias;  Milner: Roman Spring, Etc
    Label: Lyrita   Catalog: 267 Release Date: 09/04/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anthony Milner,  Nicholas Maw
    Performer:  Felicity Palmer,  Robert Tear,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Anne Howells  ... 
    Conductor:  David Atherton,  Norman Del Mar
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Sinfonietta Chorus,  London Sinfonietta,  BBC Symphony Orchestra
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  • 19.
    Handel: Jephtha / Neville Marriner, Rolfe Johnson
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 425701 Release Date: 03/15/2007   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel
    Performer:  Alfreda Hodgson,  Paul Esswood,  Emma Kirkby,  Anthony Rolfe Johnson  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Sir David Willcocks
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Cambridge King's College Choir
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  • 20.
    Bach: St Matthew Passion / Willcocks, The Bach Choir
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000799202 Release Date: 12/05/2006   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  John Shirley-Quirk,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Felicity Lott,  Neil Jenkins  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bach Choir,  Thames Chamber Orchestra,  St. Paul's Cathedral Boy's Choir
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  • 21.
    Classic Opera - Ponchielli: La Gioconda / Bartoletti, Et Al
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000425502 Release Date: 05/10/2005   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Amilcare Ponchielli
    Performer:  Montserrat Caballé,  John del Carlo,  Luciano Pavarotti,  Nicolai Ghiaurov  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Bartoletti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Opera Chorus,  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 22.
    Mozart: Requiem / Hickox, Northern Sinfonia
    Label: Virgin Classics   Catalog: 62478 Release Date: 03/29/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Yvonne Kenny,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Arthur Davies,  Gwynne Howell
    Conductor:  Richard Hickox
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Northern Sinfonia,  Northern Sinfonia Chorus
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  • 23.
    Haydn: Stabat Mater / Augér, Hodgson, Howell, Rolfe Johnson, Et Al
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4762441 Release Date: 02/21/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn
    Performer:  Arleen Augér,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Anthony Rolfe Johnson,  Gwynne Howell
    Conductor:  Laszlo Heltay
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Argo Chamber Orchestra
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  • 24.
    Purcell: Dido & Aeneas / Leppard, Troyanos, Stilwell, Et Al
    Label: Apex   Catalog: 89242 Release Date: 09/17/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Felicity Palmer,  Elisabeth Gale,  Patricia Kern,  Richard Stilwell  ... 
    Conductor:  Raymond Leppard
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra Choir,  English Chamber Orchestra
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  • 25.
    Handel: The Messiah / Alldis, London Philharmonic, Et Al
    Label: Sparrow Records   Catalog: 51560 Release Date: 03/12/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel
    Performer:  Philip Langridge,  Ulrik Cold,  Alfreda Hodgson,  Felicity Lott
    Conductor:  John Alldis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Choir
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