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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67381/2
Recording details: July 2002
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: November 2002
Total duration: 15 minutes 31 seconds

Three Preludes on Welsh Hymn Tunes 'Household Music'
composer
1940/1

Introduction
Broadcasting on ‘The Composer in Wartime’ in 1940, Vaughan Williams suggested that composers should write works for ‘combinations of all manner of instruments which might be played by people whiling away the waiting-hours of war’. He followed his own advice by composing in 1940/41 Household Music: Three Preludes on Welsh Hymn Tunes for string quartet, but he said that instead of strings there could be oboe, clarinet, flute, saxophone or cornet, or other equivalents at different pitches: bassoon, bass clarinet, recorder, B flat saxophone and euphonium. He also made an arrangement for medium-sized orchestra. The first performance, on 4 October 1941, was given in Wigmore Hall by the Blech String Quartet. The hymn tunes are ‘Crug-y-bar’, ‘St Denio’ and ‘Aberystwyth’ (eight variations on Joseph Parry’s tune). The scherzo on ‘St Denio’ is particularly engaging but the three melodies are all affectionately treated.

from notes by Michael Kennedy 2002

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