Vaughan Williams and the Symphony

January 2003
352 pages
Symphonic Studies
ISBN: 9780907689546
Format: Hardback
Toccata Press
BISAC MUS020000, MUS033000

Vaughan Williams and the Symphony

Lionel Pike

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Reveals the hidden complexities in the work of `RVW'.
Vaughan Williams' nine symphonies are among the finest pieces of music written in the twentieth century, each one revealing new aspects of Vaughan Williams' formidable creative personality. But for many years these works were undervalued by imperceptive critics - and Vaughan Williams did himself no favours by joking, with misplaced humility, about what he felt was his own lack of expertise.

Lionel Pike's penetrating analysis of all nine works reveals the hidden complexities that lie below the surface. He argues that `RVW' has been consistently denied his rightful place in twentieth-century music and in the history of the symphony, and that close investigation can uncover elements of construction that show the mind of a genius at work.

LIONEL PIKE is Senior Lecturer in Music at Royal Holloway (University of London), and has been organist of the college chapel since 1969. For four years he was Dean of the Faculty of Music in the University of London. He was a chorister and assistant organist at Bristol Cathedral, and at the University of Oxford he was organ scholar of Pembroke College.

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