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Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis
by BBC Symphony Orchestra
The first performance of the composer's "Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis" took place at the Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester Cathedral on September 6th 1910, conducted by himself. (Today's featured performance was somewhat of a mirror of that day, insomuch as Andrew Davis and the BBC Symphony duly returned it to its origins in the same Cathedral in July 1999.)

The original programme was primarily devoted to Sir Edward Elgar's oratorio "The Dream of Gerontius", which may partly account for its relatively cool reception. But its treatment, unusual for its day, of the rather obscure source material may also have puzzled the audience. Vaughan Williams first encountered Tallis' hymn while editing "The English Hymnal" in 1906; it had first appeared in Archbishop Parker's "Metrical Psalter" in 1567, set to the words "Why fumeth in fight?".
Conductor: Andrew Davis.
Posted: 13th April 2019
© Prism Leisure Corporation - CD compilation set described at
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