Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Alan Frank (OUP)

Letter No.: 
1st October, 1952.

The White Gates,
Dorking, Surrey.

Dear Frank,

Thank you very much for your news about the “Sinfonia” and about the Harmonica piece, which I will come to hear if I possibly can.1
I hope that the death of Philip Godlee will not effect2 the fortunes of the Hallé Orchestra.
Now there is something else I want to ask about: Some friends have suggested to me that I ought to try to publish several essays and articles which I have written during the last fifteen years. A few of them have appeared in magazines but most are in manuscript. There is one long one of 15,000 words about Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony but the rest are quite short.
Do you think it would be any good my sending them to the O.U.P. when they are ready? I should like to ask your opinion before I make any advances to Mr. Cumberledge.3 I do not of course ask whether they would accept them but whether they would even consider them.4
Yours sincerely

R. Vaughan Williams.

Alan Frank, Esq.,
Oxford University Press,
44, Conduit St, W.1.

1. Sinfonia Antartica (Catalogue of Works 1952/2) and Romance in D flat for Harmonica (Catalogue of Works 1951/4). Also noted in the margin at the end of this paragraph: ‘Recording’.
2. sic. Godlee was chairman of the Hallé Orchestra.
3. Geoffrey Cumberlege, publisher to the University of Oxford in succession to Humphrey Milford.
4. Frank responded on 3rd October that the Oxford University Press had had in mind the possibility of publishing some of his writings for some time and would much like to see the texts. This eventually led to the publication by OUP in 1953 of Some thoughts on Beethoven’s Choral Symphony with Writings on Other Musical Subjects, incorporated posthumously in National Music and other Essays.


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Shelfmark of original letter: 
File AB(V)
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Typewritten, signed.

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