(Harry Halbreich, Roger Nichols (Translator), Reinhard G. Pauly (Editor)
Arthur Honegger (1892-1955) is a major composer of the twentieth century. He first came to the attention of the musical public, along with Poulenc and Milhaud, as a member of Les Six and attained a certain notoriety with his composition Pacific 2.3.1., a musical representation of a steam locomotive. Although he earned popular acclaim with his oratorio King David (Le Roi David) early in his career, he was never concerned with musical fashion, and in his later years his musical language - serious, well crafted, consistently tonal - was considered outmoded. This important study considers both Honegger's life and his works. With the cooperation of Honegger's daughter, Pascale Honegger, Harry Halbreich has fully documented the composer's life since childhood; all his works are treated, with many of the more significant ones analyzed in detail. A concluding section attempts to discover, by examining the common threads in his life and music, the true nature of this giant, whose stature is finally being recognized more than forty years after his death.