program notes > R > Rhosymedre
Search the program notes for entries containing:
Ralph Vaughan Williams
Rhosymedre In 1920, Vaughan Williams wrote three organ preludes based on Welsh hymn tunes. Rhosymedre, sometimes known as "Lovely," became the best known. The original hymn tune, written by J.D. Edwards, is primarily composed of whole and half notes. These act as a cantus firmus around which is provided a three-voice contrapuntal texture. The counterpoint is well-planned, providing beautiful melodic contours and countermelodies to the hymn tune.
Ralph (pronounced “Rayf”) Vaughan Williams (1872–1958) was a highly influential British composer. He was educated at Charterhouse School, then Trinity College, Cambridge, and the Royal College of Music. He studied with Max Bruch in Berlin and Maurice Ravel in Paris. At the age of 40, he enlisted in the Royal Army Medical Corps. During WWI he endured grueling duty as a stretcher bearer before being commissioned as an artillery officer.
The music of Vaughan Williams is notable for its power, nobility and expressiveness, representing, perhaps, the essence of “Englishness.” His body of work included nine symphonies, five operas, film music, ballet and stage music, several song cycles, church music and works for chorus and orchestra. His ashes are interred in Westminster Abbey.
Last updated on April 17, 2015 by Palatine Concert Band