During February 1990, the American composer Alan Hovhaness (1911-2000)—who wrote about 400 works, including ten operas, sixty-three symphonies (best known are Mysterious Mountain, op. 132, And God Created Whales, op. 229 and Mount St. Helens Symphony, op. 360), a hundred choral works, plus dozens of vocal, chamber and instrumental pieces (including three works for accordion and two works for harmonica)—composed a short piece for Henry Doktorski simply titled Hymn.
In a letter dated February 26, 1990, he wrote, "I improvised a hymn for you in 7/4 time—a sacred rhythm—three beats for heaven plus four beats for earth, as you are a religious man."
To read Mr. Hovhaness' complete letter, see Letters.
Hovhaness' Hymn for Doktorski and Suite for Accordion (op. 166) have been recorded and can be heard on Doktorski's compact disc Classical Accordion Recital.
January 2008 update: Doktorski's compact disc with Alan Hovhaness' Hymn for Doktorski and Suite for Accordion (op. 166) has been selected for admission into the extensive collection of The Alan Hovhaness International Research Centre in Yerevan, Armenia. Following is a letter acknowledging receipt of the CD from coordinator Martin Berkofsky: "What wonderful playing—and what a wonderful treasure to add to our Hovhaness collection."
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