Letter from Ernest Irving to Ralph Vaughan Williams

Letter No.: 
Aug 19th [1952]

Ernest Irving
4, The Lawn,
Ealing Green, W.5.

11 Offington Lane

Dear R.V.W.

I hope you do not suppose for one moment that your modesty is any defence! The worst you are capable of is better than the best of the available hacks - would you write two or three themes and leave them to me to score and arrange[?] Anyway can I send you a script - so that you can confirm, revise or compromise your refusal.1
I know just what you feel about seeking new ideas in this age of synthetic & mathematical music, but this doesn’t want ‘young’ ideas - the sea is as old as Neptune, and the old Captain at least as old as Frobisher. And men on a raft don't make much use of the Lorentz equation!
So have at you again!
Yours affectionately


P.S. Let us (I mean the world) know in an essay, what it feels like to be an octogenarian with sixty odd years of musical culture.

1. This was the mehod of work adopted for the music for Bitter Springs - see VWL1977.

Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
MS Mus. 1714/1/19, f. 151
Original database number: