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Aldbourne Band

An Evening of English Music
Conductor: Glyn Williams
St. Michael's Church, Aldbourne
Saturday 6th April

This concert collaboration with the Ralph Vaughan Williams Society, Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust and Holst Society, saw Aldbourne along with respected folk singer Jonathan Causebrook chart a musical journey of ‘Englishness’ over a span of 800 years or more.

The historic roots lay deep in the soil of the local villages of Ramsbury, Aldbourne and Ogbourne St. George, the flowering branches courtesy of the great composers inspired by the people and their surroundings.


The first half was dedicated to Ralph Vaughan Williams; opening with his regal overture, ‘Henry V’, played with brilliance and pomp, followed the exquisite ‘Fantasia’ on ‘Greensleeves’ which enabled the band to display tonal warmth and broad, textured phrasing.    

The ‘Prelude’ from the wartime propaganda film, ‘The 49th Parallel’ contrasted with his ‘English Folk Song Suite’ - both bucolic and bravura, with the MD expertly giving the music time to find its flow and stylish pace.

The second half featured his contemporaries; Holst’s ‘Second Suite in F’ played with simple appreciation to enhance evocative musical imagery, whilst the ‘Cortege’ from Herbert Howells’ ‘Pageantry’ was full of melancholic pathos.  

The ‘Prelude’ from the wartime propaganda film, ‘The 49th Parallel’ contrasted with his ‘English Folk Song Suite’ - both bucolic and bravura, with the MD expertly giving the music time to find its flow and stylish pace.


John Golland’s tender arrangement of Vaughan Williams’, ‘Sine Nomine’ was finely textured, before the concert was rounded off with a robust rendition of Holst’s ‘A Moorside Suite’. 

In between the band’s performances, the audience was treated to some wonderful folk singing from Johnathan Causebrook, whilst the concert was preceded by a lecture from John Francis, Vice Chairman of the Ralph Vaughan Williams Society, entitled, ‘Vaughan Williams and the Soul of the Nation’.

In all it made for a memorable event.
Ashley Jones

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