Sinfonia’s selection of seasons with an English flavour

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BRIDGEWATER Sinfonia presents Seasons of Life – a concert of orchestral and choral works reflecting the positive aspects of life and mortality next Saturday at St Peter’s Church in Berkhamsted.

To open the programme the orchestra will perform George Butterworth’s On Banks of Green Willow – an ‘idyll’ as the composer put it, basking in overt Englishness.

Written in 1913 it is a musical illustration of the ballad of the same name – a tragic tale of a young sea captain and a farmer’s daughter.

Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis features next in the programme. Intended as a filler prelude to Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius at the Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester Cathedral in 1910 the short composition for strings turned out to be a masterpiece which has not diminished in its appeal since that auspicious premiere.

It is based upon a hymn tune written by the Tudor composer Thomas Tallis.

The final major work in the evening’s programme is Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem which was written between 1861 and 1868.

In this greatest of Brahms’ choral works the Chiltern Chamber Choir will be joined by soloists Elizabeth Roberts (soprano) and Christopher Foster (bass). The work contains some of the composer’s most haunting, memorable and beautiful melodies.

Bridgewater Sinfonia’s final concert of the season takes place at St Peter’s Church, Berkhamsted on Saturday, June 9 at 7.30pm.

Go online at for tickets or pop into Aitchisons in Berkhamsted or Perfect Pitch in Chesham.