Ralph Vaughan Williams

Ralph Vaughan Williams

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(1872 e 1958)

Ralph Vaughan Williams is most well known for his orchestral music: Norfolk Rhapsodies, Fantasia on a theme by Thomas Tollis, and his nine Symphonies.

His numerous works include oratorios, operas, and choir music, chamber music, songs, music for film amongst others. Different from the romantic epigones of his time he strove for a renewal in English music.

At the beginning of the century when Ralph Vaughan Williams was organist at the St Barnabas Church in London, he trained a choir and directed an orchestral society.

He was confronted with many popular tunes. At that rime he discovered his passion for English folk music. Like Bartok and Kodaly he started to research, to gather and to write down songs, in order to prevent them from being lost. In 1903 he become member of the Folk Song Society. His great merit and later on his enormous success was based on the creative integration of these original sources with their typical harmonies, intervals and rhythms in his composition works, which was at the same time strongly influenced by the English School of the early seventeenth century and Johann Sebastian Bach.