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Tuba Concerto

By Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958). Arranged by Phillip Littlemore. Faber Edition. 20th Century; Masterwork Arrangement. Score and Parts. Faber Music #12-0571564690. Published by Faber Music (AP.12-0571564690).

Item Number: AP.12-0571564690

ISBN 9780571564699. English.

The Tuba Concerto was written in 1953/4 in response to an invitation to compose a work for the golden jubilee of the London Symphony Orchestra. Vaughan Williams was by then in is eighty-second year; an interest on unusual instrumental sonorities was a feature of his music in the latter part of his life. He had used saxophones in the masque Job, vibraphone and wind machine in the Sinfonia Antartica (Symphony No. 7) and even completed a concerto for harmonica, piano and strings for Larry Adler. So his choice of tuba as solo instrument was less surprising than it might have seemed, and he justified it by treating it seriously and poetically, emphasizing its lyrical capabilities rather than the more comic propensities. The work is dedicated to the London Symphony Orchestra and its then principal tuba player, Philip Catelinet, whom the composer consulted constantly throughout the writing of the work. The lively, outer movements both conclude with extended cadenzas, while the beautifully lyrical Romanza is Vaughan Williams at his best. The brass band arrangement is by Phillip Littlemore and is a welcome addition to the Faber's brass band repertoire.

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