Today’s choice for much loved work by English classical music composers sits at number 10 in the Classic FM’s Hall of Fame.
It’s Ralph Vaughan Williams darkly haunting Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis, written in 1910 for performance in Gloucester Cathedral. Wonderfully, there’s a YouTube video is of a performance in the cathedral, which is of Sir Andrew Davis conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra in 2010. Vaughan Williams composition is ‘scored for large string orchestra, slightly smaller string ensemble, and a string quartet, all playing alongside each other’.
The three pieces, to date, in my week of classical music favourites, today’s, Monday’s The Lark Ascending, and yesterday’s Elgar Cello Concerto in E Minor, all are deeply English in character, evoking an English romantic pastoral scene with influences from English folk song heritage.