Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Margery Cullen

Letter No.: 
VWL2821
May 11 1954

From R. Vaughan Williams,
10, Hanover Terrace,
Regents Park,
London, N.W.1.

Dear Miss Cullen

Will you please give all the choirs my affectionate greetings and thank them all for their beautiful singing.  I was so glad to hear my “Three Choral Hymns”1 again, which I had not heard for a long time - last time I heard it in Dorking it was sung by the first division and it was considered rather difficult for them; we have come on since those days!
I hear that the first division found my “Toward to Unknown Region”2 difficult.  All I can say is that their beautiful and assured singing made it sound easy - theirs is truly the art which conceals art.
The “5 Tudor Portraits”3 one4 are [a] hard nut to crack and at early rehearsal I wondered if the kernel was going to emerge.  But with indomitable perseverance and artistic insight they finished up with a really splendid performance.
I am no longer the official conductor - but my successor5 has shown that he has it in him, if loyally supported by all concerned, to lead the LHMF on from strength to strength.
Yrs ever

R Vaughan Williams


1. Three choral hymns for baritone (or tenor) solo, mixed chorus and orchestra, Catalogue of Works 1929/3.
2. Catalogue of Works 1907/2.
3. Catalogue of Works 1935/5.
4. sic.
5. VW's successor was William Cole, who also bought VW'S house, The White Gates.

Location of original letter:

Location of copy:

Format: 
Letter
Citation: 
Cobbe 631
Original database number: 
540511a