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Ralph Vaughan Williams

Born: 1872. Died: 1958. Lived in: England

Composer, Conductor. He is considered the most important and influential British musician of his generation. Vaughan Williams' music displays a distinctly English character derived from his country's folk and Renaissance tradition, which he absorbed into a very personal style. His nine symphonies constitute one of the outstanding achievements of the 20th Century repertory. Ralph (pronounced "Rafe") Vaughan Williams was born at Down Ampney, Gloucestershire, the son of a clergyman. On his mother's side of the family he was related to Charles Darwin. He studied at the Royal College of Music and at Cambridge, followed by private instruction with Max Bruch in Berlin (1897). Despite his talent and training he was slow to develop as a artist because he had little sympathy for the Wagner-dominated musical scene of the time. While at the RCM in 1895 he formed a lifelong friendship with fellow student Gustav Holst, and the two tackled the problem of creating a new home-grown musical idiom. Vaughan Williams hit upon a solution through his discovery of old English folk and church music. From 1903 he gathered and published over 800 country tunes while also serving as editor of "The English Hymnal" (1904 to 1906), a collection of sacred vocal works from the 16th Century to the early 1900s. He contributed several original pieces to this set, in which he experimented with Elizabethan modal harmony within a modern framework.

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Arrangements | Recordings

Songbooks, Arrangements and/or Media

Displaying 1-18 of 18 items.


Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Vagabond : TTBB : Sheet Music : 073999976045 : 48009642

Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Vagabond

The Vagabond is based on words written by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894). With their saucy praise of the life on the road and the freedom of nature, they are reminders of the ancient traditions of the wanderer. But the musical elaboration is far from being just simple and popular : Ralph Vaughan Williams employs refined means of composition, in order to realize varied colors and moods ; and he offers the voice the possibility to sing magnificent phrasing and to evoke strong emotional impact.

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Voicing: TTBB | 8714b | Sheet Music | $10.95 | A Cappella


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Nine Carols For Male Voices : TTBB : 01 Songbook : 9780193859401

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Nine Carols For Male Voices

Vaughan Williams arranged these carols during World War 1 for the "choir" he developed among the men in his Field Ambulance unit. In 1917 they were stationed in Greece, near Katerini, on a hillside with Mount Olympus towering above. Ursula Vaughan Williams writes "Another experince, which no one who was there forgot, was carol singing on Christmas Eve: snow-capped Olympus, the clear night, the stars, and Ralph's choir singing carols of Hereford and Sussex with passionate nostaglia. The choir made that Christmas so far from home one that had a special quality, a special beauty, long remembered."

Songlist: God Rest Ye Merry , And Joseph Was A-Walking (Cherry Tree Carol), The First Nowell, The Lord At First, Coventry Carol, I Saw Three Ships, A Virgin Most Pure, Dives And Lazarus

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Voicing: TTBB | 9351b | Songbook | $5.50 | A Cappella


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Three Shakespeare Songs : SATB : 01 Songbook : 9780193438279 : 9780193438279

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Three Shakespeare Songs

Here's a collection from the great English composer of his original arrangements of three Shakespeare songs, two from "The Tempest" and one from "Midsummer Night's Dream". These are classics!

Songlist: Full Fathom Five , The Cloud Capp'd Towers, Overhill, over Dale

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Voicing: SATB | 9649b | Songbook | $3.95 | A Cappella


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Serenade to Music : SATB : Songbook : 9780193360020 : 9780193360020

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Serenade to Music

Serenade to Music is sublime - one of the most stunningly beautiful musical creations of the 20th century. This choral meditation on the nature of music and its power to enrapture is a setting of text from Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice. This tender and much-loved work was composed in 1938 in honour of Sir Henry Wood. It was written for 16 soloists and orchestra but may also be sung by four soloists and chorus, or by mixed-voice chorus. This beautifully presented edition includes an introduction by Michael Kennedy.
Also available for full orchestra without choir.

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Voicing: SATB | 40568b | Songbook | $13.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Dona Nobis Pacem : SATB : Songbook : 9780193388611 : 9780193388611

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Dona Nobis Pacem

A cantata for soprano and baritone soloists, SATB, and large or small orchestra
Drawing upon the Bible, sections from the Mass, and poems by Walt Whitman, this is a powerful evocation of the destruction and death brought about through war and violence, with an overarching message of peace and reconciliation.
Materials for the full and small orchestral versions and an accompaniment for strings and piano are available on hire.

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Voicing: SATB | 40569b | Songbook | $19.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : In Windsor Forest : SATB : Songbook : 9780193391215 : 9780193391215

Ralph Vaughan Williams : In Windsor Forest

This cantata was adapted by the composer from music from his opera Sir John in Love. Comprising five choral songs, it features texts by Shakespeare (from 'Much Ado About Nothing') and his near contemporaries Thomas Ravenscroft, John Lyly, and Thomas Campion. The first song is a gleeful denunciation of men and their devious ways, scored for women's voices, while the second is a rollicking drinking song for men's voices. The third maintains this energy, with sparkling orchestration to evoke the 'fairies' of its title, before the 'Wedding Chorus' changes the mood to one of blissful tranquillity. The Epilogue is celebratory and grand, bringing the cantata to a powerful close. All of the songs except the third are available individually.

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Voicing: SATB | 40570b | Songbook | $14.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Magnificat : Upper Voices - 3 par : Songbook : 9780193391543 : 9780193391543

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Magnificat

This is an unusual setting of the text, in that after an ethereal opening, a contralto/mezzo-soprano soloist sings the Magnificat text while the female chorus interpolates with other texts in praise of the Virgin Mary. The contrast between the rhapsodic lines of the soloist and the more reflective emotions of the chorus result in a moving work.

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Voicing: Upper Voices - 3 par | 40571b | Songbook | $10.25


Ralph Vaughan Williams : An Oxford Elegy : SATB : Songbook : 9780193392052 : 9780193392052

Ralph Vaughan Williams : An Oxford Elegy

An Oxford Elegy combines adapted versions of The Scholar Gypsy and Thyrsis by Victorian poet Matthew Arnold. It conveys the story of an Oxford scholar who abandons his friends and studies to live in the countryside surrounding the city as a gypsy. The work is unusual in the fact that the text is largely spoken by a narrator, with the chorus providing mostly wordless accompaniment. The result is a highly atmospheric and evocative work that combines pastoral simplicity with darker, more melancholic passages. Scores and parts for the string and chamber orchestra accompaniments are available on hire.

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Voicing: SATB | 40572b | Songbook | $19.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Sons of Light : SATB : Songbook : 9780193395015 : 9780193395015

Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Sons of Light

For mixed chorus and orchestra, to a poem by Ursula Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SATB | 40573b | Songbook | $19.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Hodie (This Day) : SATB : Songbook : 9780193395510 : 9780193395510

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Hodie (This Day)

A cantata for soprano, tenor, and baritone soloists, SATB choir, and orchestra
In this Christmas cantata Vaughan Williams uses and a wide range of musical styles to create a compelling, vivid, and highly original retelling of the Christmas story. Composed in 1953â4, Hodie (This Day) was Vaughan Williamsâs final large-scale choral-orchestral work, and was premiered under his own baton in Worcester Cathedral as part of the 1954 Three Choirs Festival. It comprises sixteen movements, including 'narrations' of words from the Bible, chorals, and a variety of other forms for both soloists and choir. The words are taken from diverse sources, with sacred texts from the Vespers of Christmas Day and the Bible interspersed with secular texts by poets including John Milton, Thomas Hardy, and the composer's own wife Ursula Vaughan Williams.

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Voicing: SATB | 40574b | Songbook | $22.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Old Hundredth Psalm Tune : SATB : Songbook : 9780193850293 : 9780193850293

Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Old Hundredth Psalm Tune

For SATB and orchestra or brass

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Voicing: SATB | 40575b | Songbook | $33.50


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Dona Nobis Pacem : SATB : Songbook : 9780193850682 : 9780193850682

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Dona Nobis Pacem

Drawing upon the Bible, sections from the Mass, and poems by Walt Whitman, this is a powerful evocation of the destruction and death brought about through war and violence, with an overarching message of peace and reconciliation.

More details
Voicing: SATB | 40576b | Songbook | $59.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Folk Songs of the Four Seasons : Upper Voices - 3 par : Songbook : 9780193850873 : 9780193850873

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Folk Songs of the Four Seasons

This cantata features sixteen highly-varied folk song settings, bound together in seasonal groupings to take the listener on an engaging journey through the year from Spring to Winter. The prologue implores us to 'sing and be merry', and many of the songs facilitate this with their charmingly light-hearted melodies and imaginative orchestral accompaniment. There are also darker moments, such as the haunting and heart-rending setting of 'The Unquiet Grave' in 'Autumn'.

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Voicing: Upper Voices - 3 par | 40577b | Songbook | $19.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Benedicite : SATB : Songbook : 9780193851597 : 9780193851597

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Benedicite

Published in 1929, Benedicite is a substantial setting of texts from the 'Song of the Three Holy Children' (part of the Apocrypha) and John Austin's hymn text 'Hark, my soul, how everything'. Forceful and dynamic passages with thick choral-orchestral textures are juxtaposed against more solemn passages, often with a gentle soprano solo floating over the choral texture.

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Voicing: SATB | 40578b | Songbook | $19.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Hodie (This Day) : SATB : Songbook : 9780193870017 : 9780193870017

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Hodie (This Day)

In this Christmas cantata Vaughan Williams uses and a wide range of musical styles to create a compelling, vivid, and highly original retelling of the Christmas story. Composed in 1953â4, Hodie (This Day) was Vaughan Williamsâs final large-scale choral-orchestral work, and was premiered under his own baton in Worcester Cathedral as part of the 1954 Three Choirs Festival. It comprises sixteen movements, including 'narrations' of words from the Bible, chorals, and a variety of other forms for both soloists and choir. The words are taken from diverse sources, with sacred texts from the Vespers of Christmas Day and the Bible interspersed with secular texts by poets including John Milton, Thomas Hardy, and the composer's own wife Ursula Vaughan Williams.

More details
Voicing: SATB | 40579b | Songbook | $11.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Folk Songs of the Four Seasons : Upper Voices - 3 par : Songbook : 9780193871007 : 9780193871007

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Folk Songs of the Four Seasons

This cantata features sixteen highly-varied folk song settings, bound together in seasonal groupings to take the listener on an engaging journey through the year from Spring to Winter. The prologue implores us to 'sing and be merry', and many of the songs facilitate this with their charmingly light-hearted melodies and imaginative orchestral accompaniment. There are also darker moments, such as the haunting and heart-rending setting of 'The Unquiet Grave' in 'Autumn'.

More details
Voicing: Upper Voices - 3 par | 40580b | Songbook | $12.25


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Three Choral Hymns : SATB : Songbook : 9780571514182 : 12-0571514189

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Three Choral Hymns

Written for Vaughan William's choir in surrey, these are beautifully judged for amateur voices. The music is direct and sharply characterized. Originally with orchestra, they are equally suitable for performance within choral concerts or as church anthems, with either organ or piano accompaniment.

Songlist: Easter Hymn, Christmas Hymn, Whitsunday Hymn

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Voicing: SATB | 40780b | Songbook | $7.95


Ralph Vaughan Williams : Two Partsongs : SATB divisi : Songbook : 9780571530366 : 12-0571530362

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Two Partsongs

Ralph Vaughan Williams's setting of Shakespeare's Sonnet 71 and Ben Jonson's Echo's Lament for Narcissus are here published for the first time, and present a fascinating insight into the early development of one of Britain's greatest twentieth-century composers. Vaugh Williams's Two Partsongs were published to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the composer's death (1872-1958).

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Voicing: SATB divisi | 40796b | Songbook | $7.50


Individual Folios

Displaying 1-9 of 9 items.


An Acre of Land : Unison : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Songbook : 9780193853638 : 9780193853638

Ralph Vaughan Williams : An Acre of Land

This setting was originally published as part of Folk Songs of the Four Seasons. The attractive melody is set to a lilting accompaniment to create a charming arrangement that will appeal to choirs and audiences of all ages.

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: Unison | $2.50 | With Piano |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 9780193853638


Down Among the Dead Men : TTB : Emily Crocker : Ralph Vaughan Williams : 00124292 : 884088965860

Emily Crocker : Down Among the Dead Men

One of Vaughan Williams' most popular arrangements for men's voices, this edition is adapted for 3-part male voices with piano. Despite the morbid title, it is a comical farce, with interweaving vocal lines and lots of opportunities for expression.

Arranger: Emily Crocker | Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: TTB | Sheet Music | $1.90 | With Piano |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 00124292


Festival Te Deum : SATB : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Sheet Music : 9780193515307 : 9780193515307

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Festival Te Deum

The Festival Te Deum was composed for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937 and sets the Te Deum text in its English translation from the Book of Common Prayer. It is suitably majestic and celebratory in style, though the grand tone does briefly give way in a solemn central section.

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SATB | $8.25 |
9780193515307


For All the Saints : SATB : Hart Morris : Ralph Vaughan Williams : 00125120 : 884088988203

Hart Morris : For All the Saints

One of the great hymns by Ralph Vaughan Williams, Hart Morris has arranged it for SATB choir and organ. Sure to be a favorite on All Saints Sunday and services honoring those in missions, the congregation is invited to join in the final stanza. The hymntune remains firmly intact in this arrangement, while the harmony provides creative pleasure and celebration.

Arranger: Hart Morris | Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SATB | Sheet Music | $2.35 |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 00125120


For All the Saints : SATB : John Purifoy : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Sheet Music : 08752167 : 884088518370

John Purifoy : For All the Saints

Uses: All Saints Day, Eternal Life, Heaven, Christian Heritage Scripture: Hebrews 12:1 One of the most revered hymns of the church is given special treatment here by John Purifoy. The optional brass and percussion parts may be used with piano or organ accompaniment, generating a noble rendition of this majestic anthem.

Arranger: John Purifoy | Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SATB | Sheet Music | $2.25 |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 08752167


O My Dear Heart : SSA : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Sheet Music : 9780193364905 : 9780193364905

Ralph Vaughan Williams : O My Dear Heart

Published for the very first time, this is a beautiful arrangement of the old German tune 'Lasst uns das Kindlein Wiegan', setting words adapted from an old Scots poem by Ursula Wood. With flowing contrapuntal lines and characteristic harmonies, O my dear heart will be popular with all upper-voice choirs.

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SSA | $3.25 | A Cappella |
9780193364905


Orpheus with his Lute : Unison : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : 9780193870352 : 9780193870352

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Orpheus with his Lute

For unison voices and piano or string orchestra.

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: Unison | $2.50 |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 9780193870352


The Old Hundredth Psalm Tune : SATB : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : 9780193535084 : 9780193535084

Ralph Vaughan Williams : The Old Hundredth Psalm Tune

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: SATB | $2.90 |
(Minimum order 4 copies)
| 9780193535084


Two songs of winter : Unison : Ralph Vaughan Williams : Ralph Vaughan Williams : 9780193857612 : 9780193857612

Ralph Vaughan Williams : Two songs of winter

These two settings from the Winter section of Folk Songs of the Four Seasons are full of Christmas spirit. 'God bless the master' is a hymn-like setting of a folk song that Vaughan Williams collected in Hampshire in 1909, while 'Wassail Song' is full of joie de vivre. The latter evokes the merriness of wassailing, in which people went from door to door singing carols and exchanging mulled cider for gifts.

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Voicing: Unison | $3.25 | With Piano |
9780193857612

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