Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans

Letter No.: 
6 March 1905

10, Barton Street

Dear Sir1

I am much obliged to you for your letter. I found it a little difficult to gather what you intended to ask me; but I think you intended to offer me the engagement to write and arrange the music for the forthcoming Masque, provided that we could come to terms as to fee. Of course this entirely depends on how much there is to be done. Glancing through the Masque hurriedly there appears not to be much and as you say that your funds are limited I suggest a fee of £12.12.02  in return for which I will provide the necessary music (if it is about the amount I imagine) and give you the right of performing it on April 24th at Stratford on Avon: but I shall retain my property in the work and shall be able to dispose of the copyright as I like. Also all expenses such as copying parts etc. to be defrayed by you.
It is a work that I should be very interested to undertake and I do not want the question of terms to be an obstacle, but I just point out that you have given me very little time in which adequately to prepare the music and if I find myself pressed for time I might have to call in help. I would of course be responsible for all the music and would promise that all should be well done.
Will you kindly tell me exactly what is expected of me - how long and elaborate the various dances are to be and what number and quality of soloists chorus and orchestra I am to expect.
I hope that there will be a good professional orchestra. Also I ought to consult with the stage-manager before I set to work on the music.
Kindly let me have all particulars.
Yours faithfully
R. Vaughan Williams 

1. F.W. Evans was Honorary Secretary to the Poet's Birthday Celebrations Special Committee of the Stratford-upon-Avon Shakespeare Club. See VWL191 for the background to this letter.
2. i.e 12 guineas.

General notes: 

The letter is written in the hand of AVW signed by VW.

Cobbe 34
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