Title graphic: Encyclopedia Entries
Composers and Music: 6

A more sustained commitment to modernism can be heard in the music of other composers of Walton's generation. Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903-89), a pupil of Nadia Boulanger in Paris and a lifelong friend of Poulenc, found Stravinsky's neoclassicism congenial. Unfortunately, Berkeley's reticence can sometimes lead to anonymity, but such works as the precision-crafted Six Preludes for piano (1945) and the grave, yet radiant, Six Poems of St. Teresa of Avila for contralto and string orchestra (1947) reveal a successful balance between emotional statement and restraint. In her series of thirteen string quartets, Dame Elizabeth Maconchy (1907-94) turned to Bartók rather than Stravinsky as a model - the five-movement design of her Seventh Quartet (1956) forms an obvious allusion to that of Bartók's Fourth - but for Elisabeth Lutyens (1906-83), Humphrey Searle (1915-82) and Benjamin Frankel (1906-73) it was the twelve-note works of the Second Viennese School that proved influential.

As early as 1939 in her Chamber Concerto No. 1, Lutyens began to explore her characteristic brand of serialism, which became fully developed in O saisons, o chateaux! (1946) and reached a new level of intensity in Quincunx (1960), both vocal works with orchestra. Searle's preference for Schoenberg's emotionalism coupled with his enthusiasm for Liszt, made possible the one-movement Piano Sonata (1951), closely modelled on Liszt's and employing Lisztian thematic transformation but within a twelve-note context. Frankel's development of an individual twelve-note style during the 1950s bore fruit in his eight symphonies composed between 1958 and 1971, although the richly sombre Violin Concerto (1951), written "in memory of the 'Six Million' [Jews killed in World War II]", contains some of his most eloquent music. Another composer to draw on serial processes, if not a systematic twelve-note technique, during the later part of his career was Alan Rawsthorne (1905-71), who made an intial impact with his Theme and Variations for two violins (1937) and the orchestral Symphonic Studies (1938). In these works his music's rapidly shifting tonal centres, facilitated by inflecting major thirds to minor and vice-versa, created a distinctive idiom that he perfected in the Violin Sonata (1958). By introducing serial processes into his Quintet for piano and wind (1963) and Third Symphony (1964), Rawsthorne expanded the technical scope of his style, but not markedly its expressive variety and breadth.