This afternoon’s live BBC Radio 3 broadcast with conductor John Wilson reveals two sharply contrasting sides to Vaughan Williams’s work.
We hear In the Fen Country, an orchestral tone poem and one of the composer’s earliest works. Showcasing his fascination with folk song, it’s tinged with echoes of Delius and evokes the East Anglian countryside.
It’s a far cry from the ferocity that the Sixth Symphony unleashed in 1948 and, 70 years on, this firestorm of a symphony still leaves listeners reeling. First heard in 1948, the symphony's violence and dissonance came as a huge shock after the serenity of Symphony No 5. Vaughan Williams always denied this work was a 'war' symphony, but in some passages war imagery is, for many, hard to ignore. The first three movements are wild and complex both rhythmically and harmonically, while the conclusion is a desolate and haunting epilogue.
Part ofBBC Philharmonic Studio Concerts
- Cancelled: RNCM International Artist Diploma Concerti with BBC Philharmonic13 May 2020 MediaCityUK Salford
- Cancelled: RNCM International Artist Diploma Concerti with BBC Philharmonic7 May 2020 MediaCityUK Salford
- Cancelled: Beethoven, Stravinsky & Mozart28 Apr 2020 MediaCityUK Salford
- Cancelled: An afternoon of Gerhard1 Apr 2020 MediaCityUK Salford