Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Roy Douglas

Letter No.: 
23rd. April, 1952.

The White Gates,
Dorking, Surrey.

Dear Roy

I feel I have done all I can now with the S.A,1 so it must now take its chance. I think Barbirolli will do it at the beginning of the New Year, but I think it ought to be ready for a try-through in the Autumn. As you know it wants its face washing badly. Will you undertake this? If so I will send you the score, but as you see, there is no hurry - that is to say, do not put off other work for it. Let’s make the date, say October 30th by which date the score [and] parts will be ready. You will see whether that is possible or not.
As regards the “Folk Songs of the Four Seasons” I enclose a letter from Miss Karpeles suggesting the orchestra required; but of course that would depend entirely on you. What you will go by is the number of strings which I imagine cannot be altered, but the rest of the instruments can be left entirely to you. I should imagine that four horns are unnecessary.2
Will you get in touch with Miss Karpeles or the Secretary of the Boyd Neel Orchestra and tell them what orchestra you think is necessary?
Yrs  RVW

(R. Vaughan Williams).

Roy Douglas, Esq.,
3, Eden Rd., Tunbridge Wells,


1. Sinfonia Antartica.
2. Roy Douglas was making a suite for small orchestra from Folk Songs of the Four Seasons, see Catalogue of Works 1949/1.


Location of original letter:

Shelfmark of original letter: 
Add MS 63547, f. 47
General notes: 


Cobbe 578; Douglas, Working with Vaughan Williams, p.42
Original database number: