Vaughan Williams: Symphony 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" - 3. Landscape / Winter in Norway





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Uploaded on Feb 9, 2012

Video and most of the photo´s made by Maarten kroon @ Hollandsk Gjestehus (Norway). Website: http://www.hollandskgjestehus.com / Tel.: +47 61290045.

Most of the photo´s are made in Vinstra, Gudbrandsdalen. Other one´s in Espedalen, Nordmøre, Averøy and the Lofoten (Norway).

Composer: Ralph Vaughan Williams (12 Oktober 1872 - 26 August 1958)
Music: Symphony 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" part 3. Landscape
Conductor: Bernard Haitink.
Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Vaughan Williams provided the music for the film Scott of the Antarctic in 1947, and was so inspired by the subject that he incorporated much of the music into a symphony. The piece was begun in 1949, and composition completed in 1952, with a dedication to Ernest Irving. The first performance took place on 14 January 1953 in Manchester with Sir John Barbirolli conducting the Hallé Orchestra The soprano soloist was Margaret Ritchie. The first American performance was given by Rafael Kubelík and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on 2 April 1953.

The work is scored for a large orchestra including three flutes doubling piccolos, two oboes, cor anglais, two clarinets, bass clarinet, two bassoons, contrabassoon, four horns, three trumpets, three trombones, tuba, timpani, four percussionists (playing side drum, bass drum, cymbals, triangle, gong, bells, xylophone, glockenspiel, vibraphone, and wind machine), celesta, harp, piano, organ (used quite startlingly and effectively in a spot towards the end of the third movement) and strings.
There is also a wordless three-part women's chorus and solo soprano, which sing only in the first and last movements.

Mechanics of the composition

A typical performance lasts around 45 minutes. There are five movements. The composer specified that the third movement lead directly into the fourth. The score includes a brief literary quotation at the start of each movement. They are sometimes declaimed in performance (and recordings), although the composer did not say that they were intended to form part of a performance of the work.

1) Prelude: Andante maestoso (quotation from Shelley, Prometheus Unbound)
To suffer woes which hope thinks infinite,/ To forgive wrongs darker than death or night,/ To defy power which seems omnipotent,/ ... / Neither to change, nor falter, nor repent:/ This ... is to be/ Good, great and joyous, beautiful and free,/ This is alone Life, Joy, Empire and Victory.

2) Scherzo: Moderato (quotation from Psalm 104, Verse 26)
There go the ships, and there is that Leviathan whom thou hast made to take his pastime therein.

3) Landscape: Lento (quotation from Coleridge, Hymn before Sunrise, in the vale of Chamouni)
Ye ice falls! Ye that from the mountain's brow/ Adown enormous ravines slope amain —/ Torrents, methinks, that heard a mighty voice,/ And stopped at once amid their maddest plunge!/ Motionless torrents! Silent cataracts!

4) Intermezzo: Andante sostenuto (quotation from Donne, The Sun Rising)
Love, all alike, no season knows, nor clime,/ Nor hours, days, months, which are the rags of time.

5) Epilogue: Alla marcia, moderato (non troppo allegro) (quotation from Captain Scott's Last Journal)
I do not regret this journey; we took risks, we knew we took them, things have come out against us, therefore we have no cause for complaint.

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