Ralph Vaughan Williams

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Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby trombonepirate » Mon Apr 03, 2006 8:59 pm

I recently heard a performance of Vaughan Williams' first symphony. I was quite impressed by the way the words and music fit together. However, I felt the last movement dragged on a bit and the whole thing felt like the style was a bit immature. Anyone else have an opinion on VW or this piece?
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby dai bread » Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:17 pm

The only piece of VW that comes to mind is the "Antarctic" symphony, comprised of music written for the film about Robert Falcon Scott's expedition to Antarctica. It's very moody and atmospheric, as you'd expect.

Normally, I find VW a bit insipid, but a lot depends on my mood at the time.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Andy Warton » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:44 am

Originally posted by dai bread:
Normally, I find VW a bit insipid, but a lot depends on my mood at the time.
How do I reply to that?! RVW is my favourite composer. Some of his works are, admittedly, quite dull. But his English folk song suite is lovely. My favourite piece is "The Lark Ascending". Now, played by most people, this is a nice piece. But in the hands of the violinist, Sara Chang, it is a piece of genius . That's the only recording really worth listening to.

If you hear that, Dai, and still don't like it, then nothing will change your mind!! :D

<small>[ 04-10-2006, 02:24 PM: Message edited by: Andy W ]</small>
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Andy Warton » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:45 am

PS

Earlier this year I saw the composer's name spelled "Rayfe Vaughan Williams." I was most unimpressed.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby DavidS » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:19 am

I have a cousin called Raif (maybe short for Raphael) but I have heard VW's first name pronounced like that.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby trombonepirate » Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:17 pm

Originally posted by Andy W:
PS

Earlier this year I saw the composer's name spelled "Rayfe Vaughan Williams." I was most unimpressed.
That just looks pompous.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Andy Warton » Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:28 pm

Originally posted by DavidS:
I have a cousin called Raif (maybe short for Raphael) but I have heard VW's first name pronounced like that.
Oh, yeah - absolutely. A lot of "Ralph"s pronounce it like that; but I'm pretty sure that's not how it's meant to be spelt. Of course I could be wrong; but I was merely making a joke. Have I offended?
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby DavidS » Mon Apr 10, 2006 2:51 pm

Andy - I would never take offence from you! :)
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Selma in Sandy Eggo » Mon Apr 10, 2006 3:23 pm

I've never heard "Ralph" pronounced without the "L"; at least not knowingly. "Rafe" is a fairly accepted nickname for "Raphael" so if I heard "Ralph" without the "L" that's what I'd take it for.

"Zeke" always stops me cold. I never know if it's an "Ezekiel" or a "Hezekiah" I'm talking to.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby BigJon@Work » Mon Apr 10, 2006 4:06 pm

I thought it was the Irish pronunciation.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Shapley » Mon Apr 10, 2006 4:39 pm

Around here, R A L P H is pronounced Rawf. :)

Zeke could be the abbreviation for Zeke, which is a name all by itself in these here parts.

I had never heard R A L P H pronounced Raif before.

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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby BigJon@Work » Mon Apr 10, 2006 4:54 pm

The fine Ralph, Ralph Fiennes, pronounces his name as Raif.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby shostakovich » Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:31 pm

Good observation, BigJon.

VW's name is always spelled RALPH, and should be pronounced RAIF/RAFE. It rarely is in this country. Many moons ago Adrian Boult was scheduled to conduct the premiere recording of the 9th symphony and Ralph was to be in attendance. Unfortunately, he died the night before. The record was prefaced by Boult announcing his death the previous night. He pronounced the name RAIF/RAFE.

I think VW would have approved of calling him RALPH if you enjoyed his music. He was a very nice man, from all I've read about him.
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby trombonepirate » Mon Apr 10, 2006 8:28 pm

Originally posted by Andy W:
Originally posted by DavidS:
[b] I have a cousin called Raif (maybe short for Raphael) but I have heard VW's first name pronounced like that.
Oh, yeah - absolutely. A lot of "Ralph"s pronounce it like that; but I'm pretty sure that's not how it's meant to be spelt. Of course I could be wrong; but I was merely making a joke. Have I offended? [/b]
You haven't offended me at all! I thought it was funny and reminded me of all the people I know who spell their names funny to try to look hip, cool, important, and exciting. I should have made that more clear in my post. I'm really sorry about that. Goodness! Can't you read my mind? ;)
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby jamiebk » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:31 pm

Ralph is generally pronounced "Rafe" or "Raif" by the Brits. We Americans butchered it into "RALF"
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Schmeelkie » Tue Apr 11, 2006 8:11 am

Pronouncing it 'Raif' instead of 'ralf' sounds so much nicer. Ralf is something you do after a heavy night drinking....

Course, around here we prounounce Charlotte (part of the city of Rochester), shar-lot, and the town of Chili is chai-lie, not to mention Lima (pronounced like the bean not the country)... Somewhat near Penn State is the town of Du Bois - pronounced doo-boys. We really like to mangle pronounciations in this country...

And I still have the aunt/ant argument with my husband - a Newenglander - he says 'awnt' and I say 'ant'. We'll see what Pumpkin says...

sorry for hijacking....
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Shapley » Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:19 am

Why would you spell it R A L P H if you want to pronounce it otherwise? The English used to spell my name S H A P L E I G H. Why do you need to write leigh if you want to pronounce lee? Wastes ink, IMHO.

Jamie says we Americans butchered the pronunciation, but I say the British butchered the spelling. :D

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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Andy Warton » Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:27 am

Originally posted by trombonepirate:
You haven't offended me at all!
Originally posted by DavidS:
Andy - I would never take offence from you!
Whew! :D

That sorted, I do actually have a personal preference for the "Ralph" pronunciation. Perhaps because of Lord of the Flies?

Shapley - tell me about it. :D But don't you just love the way English is just full of things that don't seem to make sense? (Cough and though and so on...) I think it's got something to do with the languages that English takes its words from. I love it; but it must make learning English as a second language a nightmare.

<small>[ 04-11-2006, 10:33 AM: Message edited by: Andy W ]</small>
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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Shapley » Tue Apr 11, 2006 10:09 am

Andy,

RE:but it must make learning English as a second language a nightmare.

I think it makes learning English as a first language a nightmare! :D

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Re: Ralph Vaughan Williams

Postby Selma in Sandy Eggo » Tue Apr 11, 2006 11:22 am

I have it on good authority that learning Chinese as a second language is worse.

Perhaps the many irregularities in English make us more flexible? I'm an incurably sanguine optimist. There's gotta be an upside to everything. :D
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