Harbison: Symphony No. 3
Harbison: Symphony No. 4
Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer John Harbison's six symphonies span three decades of his life. Each takes a unique view of this important genre while revealing the evolution of his own style. The Third Symphony, dating from 1990, is a compact, five-movement piece whose variety of character can be summed up by Harbison's movement titles: Disconsolate, Nostalgic, Militant, Passionate, and Exuberant. This recording was taken from performances led by James Levine in fall 2010 as part of the BSO's two-season survey of the six Harbison symphonies. The composer's Fourth Symphony, written in 2004, bears the traces of his preoccupation with 1920s jazz from his years working on the opera The Great Gatsby, but continues in a different, more "classical" direction. This recording, led by French conductor (and former BSO assistant conductor) Ludovic Morlot, was taken from live performances of fall 2011.