CHRISTOPHER HOGWOOD (1941-2014)

Conductor, Musicologist, Keyboard player

Archive


Cambridge University Honorary Doctorate - Orator's Speech

November 10, 2008

 

'THERE stands before you a distinguished musician beloved of the Muses. He began his career as a harpsichordist, and quickly gained renown as a major proponent of early music and as a conductor of the greatest skill. His repertoire runs the gamut from ancient to modern: his name is associated with Haydn and Handel, but he is also a devotee of the neo-Classical and neo-Baroque, and he has a particular penchant for Czech composers. Indeed, the Martinu Society of Prague awarded him their medal. But whatever he is working on, from whatever period, whether he is playing or conducting others, there is one thing in particular that marks out his music and draws praise from the critics: he does not allow a single note to be played until he has used all his skill to discover and recreate the original intention of the composer.

For he is not just a musician, but a student of the art, or rather science, of music. No, not a student, but a most learned practitioner. For the techniques of textual criticism which others apply to Greek and Roman authors, he (who indeed read Classics as an undergraduate at Pembroke College), applies to music. He has produced many editions, including of Mendelssohn's overtures and symphonies; by showing their many variations he has revealed how the composer produced his art.

But for those like your Orator whom the Muses begrudge any such skill, it is his talent which is the greatest marvel. What praise do the critics not lavish upon him? Is there an opera house in which he is not known, which does not welcome him with open arms? The City of Halle this year awarded him the Handel Prize. Today we add our honours to theirs.

I present to you

CHRISTOPHER JARVIS HALEY HOGWOOD, C.B.E., M.A.

Honorary Fellow of Pembroke College and of Jesus College, Honorary Professor of Music, Founder and Emeritus Director of the Academy of Ancient Music'


INSIGNEM hunc uidetis, magistri, philomusum, qui cum initium cursus uitae fecisset plectrocymbalo canens, tantum ut unus e maximis musicae antiquioris fautoribus quantum ut summa ingenii acie praeditus mesochorus laudem celeriter cepit. amplitudo peritiae a priscis musicis usque ad eos qui nunc sunt extenditur: in illis nomen eius cum Haydniana Handelianaque musica praecipue coniungitur; apud hos eis qui classicis ac tumidioribus modis cantus componant maxime studet. magna est ei uoluptas in scriptoribus Boicis, qui a sodalitate Pragensi quae Bohuslav Martinu celebrat proprio nomismate ornatus est. sed quidquid cuiuslibet aeui tractat, siue canit ipse, siue alios ducit, hoc in primis symphonias eius notat, hoc existimatoribus laude maxima dignum uidetur, quod ne sonus quidem produci sinit dum operam omnem dat non ad inueniendum modo sed ad renouandum quid auctor in mente habuerit.

nam non est musicus tantum, sed ipsius musicae artis uel potius scientiae discipulus. discipulum dixi? immo, uir doctissimus. artes illas enim quibus alii ut inueniant quid scripserint auctores Romani et Graeci utuntur, hic uir (qui litteris humanioribus apud nos studebat) ad rem musieam adhibet. multa alia et corpus Mendelssohnianum edidit per quod, uariis emendationibus patefactis, artem illius quo modo excogitata esset in lucem protulit.

indoles tamen eius, quam mihi quidem Musae omnino inuiderunt, miraculo est maximo: quid enim est laudis quod critici ei non impertiunt? quod theatrum cothurnatum eum non cognouit, accipit, exoptatum amat? urbs Halae in Salam nuper eum praemio Handeliano exornauit; ad illas laureas hodie nos nostras addimus.

praesento uobis magistrum in artibus, Excellentissimi Ordinis Imperi Britannici commendatorem, Collegiorum Pembrochiani et Iesu socium honoris causa, apud nos musicae professorem honoris causa, Musicae Antiquioris Academiae conditorem et quondam rectorem,

CHRISTOPHERVM JARVIS HALEY HOGWOOD

 
 

powered by typomania