Gustav Holst | FAQ

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Questions about Holst's Life

  1. When was Holst born? Where was he born?
  2. Gustav Holst was born on September 21, 1874 in Cheltenham, England.

Questions about Holst's Choral Music

  1. Who was it that connected Holst's Jupiter theme to the poem "I Vow to Thee, My Country"? Was Holst in favor of this?
  2. Sir Cecil Spring Rice wrote the poem, "I Vow to Thee, My Country," in 1918. Holst himself was commissioned to set the words to music. Under time constraints he was "delighted" to find that the words fit his previously composed tune.

Questions about Holst's Orchestral Music

  1. Why isn't there a movement for Earth in Holst's piece The Planets?
  2. Earth wasn't included because The Planets has a loose basis in astrology, and in the practice of astrology, the reference point is Earth, so it is not included in the mapping.

  3. When composing The Planets, did Holst include Pluto, or was this piece added later?
  4. The movement, Pluto, The Renewer is actually a separate piece written by Colin Matthews, an English composer who also serves as head of the Holst Foundation. Matthews was commissioned to write a "Pluto" movement by Kent Nagano for a performance of The Planets in 2000.