As a prelude to the season of Christmas music, the December Lyceum at First Parish on the Common will celebrate Ralph Vaughn Williams, noted English composer who is known for his interest in English folk music and carols, among many other genres. The community is invited to attend the Sunday, Dec. 4 event from 4 to 5 p.m. – either in person at the church or via Zoom. First Parish is wheelchair accessible.
Brad Conner, Music and Choral Director at First Parish in Bedford, will present “Ralph Vaughn Williams: The Musical Soul of England,” a program which is free and open to all. Conner’s exploration of Vaughan Williams’ music will explore its influence and connection to the holidays, and will include many well-known choral and orchestral pieces.
In his lifetime (1872-1958), Vaughn Williams wrote operas, ballets, chamber music, secular and religious vocal pieces, hymns, and orchestral compositions, and nine symphonies. He was particularly interested in music from Tudor times and English folk music and carols. He was almost single-handedly responsible for the resurgence of scholarship in these areas. One composition that is familiar to many is his Fantasia on Christmas Carols.
In his 18 years as Music Director at First Parish, Conner has brought a variety of music programs to the community. His enthusiasm for music ranges across all genres, from classical to contemporary to jazz to blues, to the Great American Songbook, to Broadway/film music, to classic rock … to all good music.
Conner has multiple degrees from West Virginia University, including musicology, vocal and piano performance, and teaching.
During the Covid lockdown, he used his time to work on piano works by Schubert and Beethoven. Since then, he has resumed his professional performing life as a conductor, pianist, singer, and lecturer at First Parish in Bedford, Beacon Hill Seminars. and the Cambridge Center for Adult Education.
To enjoy the concert, here is the Zoom link:
Meeting ID: 930 6284 8345
One tap mobile +19292056099,,93062848345#
By phone +1 929 205 6099
[Editor’s Note 11/27: Please note the correct date and time is December 4 from 4-5pm.]