Mary Howe


Born: April 4, 1882   Died: September 14, 1964  
An underappreciated and rarely heard American original, Mary Howe was born in Richmond, VA, on April 4, 1882. She studied piano with Ernest Hutcheson and Harold Randolph and in Germany with Richard Burmeister, a pupil of Liszt. Her composition teacher at Peabody Conservatory was Gustave Strube, the first conductor of the Baltimore Symphony. After receiving her composition degree from Peabody in 1922 she traveled to Paris to study with Nadia Read more Boulanger, who was just then beginning to teach composition.

Mary Howe was also active as a pianist, appearing in solo concerts and in two-piano concerts with Anne Hull, and in chamber music performances. She also served as vice-president of the Friends of Music of the Library of Congress, and was a member of the Board of Directors of the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. She died in 1964.

Rock: Symphonic Poem lasts just over 11 minutes, but is a work of considerable instrumental grandeur. Yet, while utilizing traditional musical language, it never becomes romantic or affected. Granite it may not be, but strong and towering it definitely is, and its richness and power comes from a restrained and informed musical gift.

Mary Howe's prominent orchestral works include Poema (1924), Stars (1929), Sand (1929), Dirge (1931), Coulennes (1936), and the suite Potomac. Other scores include the ballet Cards, which predated Coulennes by a year, Castellana for two Pianos and Orchestra (1935), and Spring Pastorale for solo violin and 13 instruments (1936). She also wrote songs, choral works, and chamber and piano compositions.

Rock: Symphonic Poem has been recorded by the Richmond Symphony Orchestra conducted by Jacques Houtmann. It is still available on vinyl from Opus One (#100). Read less
Browse 1-6 of 6 Available Recordings
  • 1.
    American Art Songs & Their Poetry / Tingler, Thomas
    Label: Centaur Records   Catalog: 3552 Release Date: 09/01/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Uzee Brown,  Hall Johnson,  Undine Smith Moore,  Richard Hundley  ... 
    Performer:  Stephanie Tingler,  Martha Thomas
    CD: $15.99
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  • 2.
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 145 Release Date: 05/01/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Louise Talma,  Vivian Fine,  Julia Perry,  Mabel Daniels  ... 
    Conductor:  William Strickland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Imperial Philharmonic Orchestra Tokyo
    CD: $13.99
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  • 3.
    Johan Franco, Mary Howe: Orchestral Works
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 124 Release Date: 04/01/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johan Franco,  Mary Howe
    Performer:  Paula Lenchner,  Samuel Brill,  Celius Dougherty,  Vincenz Ruzicka
    Conductor:  Eduard Flipse,  William Strickland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Orchestra
    CD: $13.99
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  • 4.
    Luening, Antheil & Howe: Orchestral Works
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 103 Release Date: 03/01/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Otto Luening,  George Antheil,  Mary Howe
    Conductor:  F. Charles Adler,  Alfredo Antonini,  William Strickland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Orchestra,  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $13.99
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  • 5.
    Love's Seasons - Howe, Ward / Mcclain, Garrett
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1055 Release Date: 07/26/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Mary Howe,  Robert Ward
    Performer:  Sandra McClain,  Margo Garrett
    On sale! $16.98
    CD: $11.99
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  • 6.
    Mary Howe: Stars, Sand, Castellana, Etc / Strickland, Et Al
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 785 Release Date: 03/17/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Mary Howe
    Performer:  George Steiner,  Werner Lywen,  Norman Lamb,  John Martin  ... 
    Conductor:  William Strickland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chamber Arts Society of Catholic Univ. of America,  Imperial Philharmonic Orchestra Tokyo,  Vienna Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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