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Saturday, July 30, 2016 Permalink

The Hymn Connection

Aaron Copland & Sister Ann Lee, Thomas Tallis & Ralph Vaughan Williams


Two of the 20th century’s most popular orchestral works are based on hymns—one from 16th century England, and the other from 19th century America.  And both hymns are well-known today almost entirely because of their use in those two concert pieces.

In this hour, the story of the Tudor hymn that inspired Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis--and the Shaker tune “Simple Gifts,” rediscovered by Aaron Copland and made famous in perhaps his best-known work, Appalachian Spring.

Whales and Nightingales (Judy Collins) Elektra 75010   

Vaughan Williams Norfolk Rhapsody No. 1 (under narration)    EMI CDM 7 640222
New Philharmonia Orchestra, Adrian Boult

Vaughan Williams: Collector's Edition, disc 19        EMI 2066362   
"Old One Hundredth," Choir Of Winchester Cathedral and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, David Hill, cond.

Tallis Scholars Sing Thomas Tallis  Gimell CDGIM203   
Sancte Deus & Tunes for Archbishop Parker's Psalter   

O Thou Transcendent [DVD]         Tony Palmer Films TPDVD106   
"When Rising from the Bed of Death" Choir of Gloucester Cathedral)

Vaughan Williams: Collector's Edition, disc 10        EMI 2066362
Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis, Bournemouth Symphony, Silvestri

Heartstrings (Muriel Anderson)            CGD 99   
"Simple Gifts" (break/end music)       

Simple Gifts (Coulter & Phillips)            Gourd Music 106   
"Simple Gifts"    (music under narration)   

Simple Gifts (Boston Camerata)            Erato 4509-98491-2   
"Simple Gifts" (choral)       
Copland: Applachian Spring, etc.            Nimbus NI 2506   
Appalachian Spring, St. Luke's  Chamber Ensemble, Davies

Long Time Ago             Teldec 9031-77310-2   
Copland, Old American Songs: "Simple Gifts," St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Wolff; Thomas Hampson

John Williams: "Air and Simple Gifts"             iTunes
"Air and Simple Gifts," Yo-Yo Ma, Anthony McGill, Gabriela Montero and Itzhak Perlman.

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