Harry Haskell


Available to purchase online here:

The Early Music Revival: A History

Hailed by the New York Times as "a book full of information and ideas," The Early Music Revival is a comprehensive study of the historical performance movement, tracing its origins back beyond 19th-century antiquarianism to the 18th century. Based on extensive original research, as well as interviews with leading artists and scholars in Europe and the United States, the book scrutinizes major figures and trends in the early music revival, and assesses the remarkable impact they have had--and continue to have--on mainstream musical life.

Written in a lively and entertaining style that "makes characters spring off the page" (Classical Music magazine), the book covers such topics as Mendelssohn's critical role, in 1829, in the "rediscovery" of Bach's St. Matthew Passion; the impact of the Schola Cantorum of Paris, founded by Vincent d'Indy and others to promote the study and performance of early religious masterworks; the pioneering work of Arnold Dolmetsch and other instrument makers; the influence of such early-music celebrities as Wanda Landowska, Alfred Deller, Christopher Hogwood, Jaap Schröder, and Jordi Savall; plus controversial issues of "authentic" performance philosophy that continue to be hotly debated.

Described in its 2013 French edition, Les Voix d'un renouveau, as "a veritable legend in the Anglo-Saxon world," Haskell's book won the prestigious Prix des Muses in musicology awarded by the Fondation Singer-Polignac in 2014.

“This fine book has established [Haskell] as an important writer in our field. . . . Although a serious historical study, it is written with journalistic energy. Although full of facts and thoughtful analysis, it urges you forward with human interest elements. Neither scholar nor casual reader will want to put it down.” (Brent Wissick in the American Recorder)

“A splendidly organized and entertainingly written survey which should stimulate much debate.” (Nicholas Kenyon in the London Times Literary Supplement)

"With its unfailing erudition, [Haskell's book] reads like a novel." (Readers Blog, Bibliothèque Nationale de France)

"Essential reading." (ClassiqueNews.com)

Selected Works

Fiction/creative nonfiction
"Masterfully drawing on intimate family letters, Haskell crosses the boundaries of fact and fiction to bring to life the distinctive voices of an era and illuminate one exceptional woman's struggle for independence and fulfillment."
–Lauren Belfer, New York Times bestselling author of City of Light, A Fierce Radiance, and And After the Fire
“This could be the best book on Kansas City history published in decades. The writing is excellent, literate, and informed.”
—William S. Worley, author of J. C. Nichols and the Shaping of Kansas City
"A book that will delight and instruct everyone who reads it, even those who have lived through important parts of the story; better still, it will leave the reader thinking about what it all means."
--Richard Dyer in the Boston Globe
"A beautifully collected and annotated anthology of occasional writings about music. . . . I recommend it to anybody who likes music and wants to like it yet again."
--Boston Book Review

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