JAN VAN GILSE (1881-1944): Symphonies No. 1 in F and No. 2 in E Flat.
Catalogue Number: 07K001
Reference: 777 349
Description: Van Gilse lost both his sons to the Nazis and he himself was deeply involved with the Dutch Underground during the Second World War, spending two years in various hiding places with his wife until he died of cancer in a hospital under an assumed name. His music had long since been outlawed by the occupation authorities (he had been anti-Nazi throughout his period working in Germany during the 1930s) and much of it was hidden to prevent it being destroyed. Changes in musical tastes and styles after the war led to his music being almost completely forgotten. The first symphony (1901) has not been heard since 1902 and the second (1902) probably not since autumn of 1941. van Gilse was studying under Franz Wüllner when he wrote the first but both symphonies bear the marks of a young man infatuated with the larger-than-life figure of Mahler. Except in size - each of these comes out to just over 33 minutes here and, in the second, there is much that is plainly van Gilse's own personality coming out. Very attractive and colorfully orchestrated, these works whet the appetite for the composer's remaining two symphonies. Netherlands Symphony Orchestra; David Porcelijn.