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Waltzes, madrigals and summer songs: Royal Free Music Society

Saturday June 23, 2018 at 19:30
St John's Wood Church, London
on the door: £12 (£6 for full-time students and unwaged); in advance: £10/£5; children are free
Other Sources: via choir members
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Tickets "at the door" - until sold out
  1. 18 Liebeslieder-Waltzer, for 4 part choir and piano 4 hands Op 52 - Johannes Brahms
  2. 5 English Folksongs - Ralph Vaughan Williams
    • The dark eyed sailor
    • Just as the tide was flowing
  3. Linden Lea - Ralph Vaughan Williams
  4. As torrents in summer - Sir Edward Elgar
  5. My love dwelt in a Northern land Op 18 No 3 - Sir Edward Elgar
  6. I sowed the seeds of love, A Hampshire folksong - Gustav Holst
  7. My bonny lass she smileth - Thomas Morley
  8. April is in my mistress' face - Thomas Morley
  9. Weep, O mine eyes - John Bennet
  10. God is gone up Op 27/2 - Gerald Finzi
  11. Cantique de Jean Racine Op 11 - Gabriel Fauré
  12. En bateau, from Petite Suite, for piano 4 hands L 65 - Claude Debussy
  13. Slavonic Dance No 8 in G minor, from 8 Slavonic Dances Op 46 - Antonín Dvorák
  14. Fanfare, from 4 Extemporisations, for organ - Percy Whitlock

For our joyous midsummer concert, the Royal Free Music Society choir will be performing a wonderful mix of waltzes, madrigals and love songs from across the ages. Many of the pieces, like Johannes Brahms’s Liebeslieder Walzer, draw their inspiration from folk melodies and poems.

First performed in Vienna in 1870, Brahms’s Love Song Waltzes were an instant hit with both professional musicians and amateur music-makers in the home. The cycle of short romantic songs evoke both exuberant joy and brooding melancholy – all set to the lively ¾ tempo of the rustic Ländler folk dance.

Ralph Vaughan Williams too was inspired by traditional folk songs – travelling the English countryside to collect and write down tunes that, by the early 1900s, were already starting to die out.

His contemporary, Edward Elgar was also a great lover of the British countryside - nature clearly inspired the poetic imagery in the graceful songs of his that we’ll be performing.

And we’ll be taking you back more than four-hundred years with a selection of classic madrigals – complex polyphonic pieces that were hit songs in Elizabethan England.

St John's Wood Church
Lord's Roundabout
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