Sunday 13 June 2010


Philharmonia Orchestra: Hovhaness

Spoken introduction at the start of the performance
Ralph Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis
Alan Hovhaness: Fantasy on Japanese wood prints for xylophone & orchestra, Op.211
Alan Hovhaness: Prayer of St Gregory for trumpet & string orchestra, Op.62b
Ralph Vaughan Williams: 5 Variants of 'Dives and Lazarus' for string orchestra & harp
Alan Hovhaness: Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam

Philharmonia Orchestra perform works by the American composer Alan Hovhaness and Ralph Vaughan Williams, two of Richard Thompson's favourite composers. Acclaimed British-Iranian actor and comedian Omid Djalili appears as special guest narrator for Hovhaness's wonderful Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.

`It has been remarkable that English art is all about the past and the landscape - in that sense it is sentimental and the English wouldn't have it any other way. Ralph Vaughan Williams was a great re-discoverer of traditional and early music, which he revived, re-harmonised and returned to us in new forms.' (Richard Thompson)

`With this concert, Thompson brings us a musical rarity. The Armenian-American composer Alan Hovhaness (1911 - 2000) shares Richard's fascination with music of mystic contemplation, and an interest in Eastern cultures and religions. Hovhaness' music has an expressive simplicity and Richard Thompson's Meltdown provides audiences with a very rare chance to hear it.' (Gillian Moore, Head of Contemporary Culture, Southbank Centre)


Philharmonia Orchestra
Charles Hazlewood conductor
Colin Currie percussion
Alistair Mackie trumpet
James Crabb accordion
Omid Djalili narrator

Watch & Listen