No 1: Hornpipe: Rollicking, but not too fast
No 2: The weary wave o' Tyne: Slow and sad
No 3: Culloden 'A country dance': Quick and merry
Boughton’s interest in folk music had first found an outlet in 1905 in a series of elaborate Choral Variations where his approach had been less that of a musical archaeologist than a believer in the authority of pure melody. That faith underpinned all his music, however complex its form and expression. Accordingly, the melodies of the Folk Dances are allowed to speak for themselves, even though the settings are subtle and imaginative. No actual ‘first’ performance has been recorded – unobtrusively, the work simply entered the repertoire of string orchestras, professional and amateur alike.
from notes by Michael Hurd © 2000