With characteristic generosity, in 1956 Vaughan Williams set up the RVW Trust (sister charity to the VWCT) to support the work of his fellow composers. In the last 20 years it has given around £6 million in grants averaging £2,200 each.
To celebrate RVW150, the Trust has supported a number of special projects which are inspired by or responding to RVW’s music, ideas, or life. Saints Triumphant: variations on Vaughan Williams’s hymn tune ‘Sine Nomine’ was composed by Philip Wilby and commissioned by Brass Bands England as the test piece for the European Brass Band Championship, and will be premiered by 13 bands at the European Brass Band Festival on 30 April.
Looking West is a co-commission and co-production between Nova Music Opera and the Ryedale and Presteigne festivals using use ideas of Pilgrimage to unlock key themes that thread through RVW’s life and work. The concert-theatre work from composer Julian Philips and librettist Rebecca Hurst, will be toured in the UK during the summer and autumn of 2022.
The vocal soloists are Rebecca Bottone soprano and Rebecca Afonwy-Jones mezzo-soprano. Nova Music Opera’s own ensemble will be conducted by artistic director George Vass. The stage director will be Richard Williams.
Thaxted Music Festival and Music at Paxton Festival have co-commissioned emerging composer Sarah Cattley to compose a song cycle on the themes of travel and nature to complement Vaughan Williams’s Songs of Travel. Both Cycles will be performed at the festivals in July by baritone Roderick Williams and pianist Susie Allan together with songs by friends and pupils of RVW: George Butterworth, Ruth Gipps, Rebecca Clarke, Gerald Finzi, Elizabeth Maconchy and Ivor Gurney.
Further pieces for 2022-23 will be announced this autumn.
Explore RVW 150