Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Michael and Eslyn Kennedy

Letter No.: 
3 March 1957

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

My dear Michael and Eslyn,

I am so glad that you were able to come to the St John and that you approved of it.1 I think it was the best performance that we have given: I believe that it is our tenth year!
I should like to see your article on The Apostles2 very much. I am afraid that I have never cared about it, except the final Alleluias which are beautiful. I always feel that he was oppressed by the fact that he was writing for the Church of England and could not get rid of the bombazine and bonnets of the Anglican Sunday morning service. On the whole I like the Kingdom3 better, though of course there is nothing so bad in the Apostles as the “Lord’s prayer”. This is all for your ear only, please!
I think we shall probably not go to Cheltenham after all this year – though we may change our minds.
Our love to Eslyn


 1. The Kennedys had been at the performance of the St John Passion at Dorking on 23rd February
 2. Michael Kennedy had written a piece on Elgar’s oratorio for The Hallé Magazine.
 3. The 1906 oratorio by Elgar intended as the second work of a trilogy after The Apostles.


Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
MS Mus. 159, f.159
General notes: 

Typewritten, signed. This letter is printed in part in Michael Kennedy, Works of Vaughan Williams, p.388.

Cobbe 709; Kennedy, Works of Vaughan Williams, p.388
Original database number: