Charles-Marie Widor William Thomas McKinley Gardner Read Vittorio Rieti Ezra Sims

Gardner Read

Five Aphorisms, op. 150 (1991)

Janet Packer, violin
Howard Karp, piano

Also on CD:
Sonata Da Chiesa, op. 61 (1945)
Sonoric Fantasia No. 1, op. 102 (1958)
String Quartet No. 1, op. 100 (1957)

Composed in 1991 for Janet Packer, Five Aphorisms for Violin and Piano, op. 150, is a late masterwork by Gardner Read (1913-2005), who enjoyed a prolific career as composer, conductor, teacher and author.  Listeners are fascinated by the relationship between each aphorism (spanning the first century BC to the twentieth) and the emotional power, coloristic effects, and expressive content of the music.


"The moods change from the opening frenzy to the mystic rapture of the starry night. It is a beguiling and imaginative composition that shows off the violinist's technique and sensitivity. Any audience would certainly delight in this work."

—Penn Sounds

"These pieces display a touching expressive authenticity... and the performances by violinist Janet Packer and pianist Howard Karp do them justice."



Five Aphorisms for Violin and Piano, op. 150
I. “Whom the gods would destroy they first make mad.”

Publilius Syros

II. “Pains of love be sweeter far than all other pleasures are.”

John Dryden

III. “He that plants thorns must never expect to gather roses.”



“All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.”
Edgar Allen Poe

V. “Thou canst not stir a flower without troubling of a star.”

Francis Thompson

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