As the 19th century gave way to the 20th, the work of the American poet Walt Whitman seemed to many to capture the essence of the new age, portraying an optimistic vision of a world inspired by human and scientific endeavor and the spirit of adventure. Towards the Unknown Region had its first performance in Leeds in 1907. It made an immediate impression on the public and the critics, and identified composer Ralph Vaughan Williams as a new and important voice in English music. The work’s enduring success stems from its remarkable marriage of music and text, the unmistakable quality of Vaughan Williams’ inspired music perfectly encapsulating Whitman’s noble, humanistic aspirations.
Come and hear us perform Toward the Unknown Region
Glory and Praise
Gloria (Francis Poulenc)
Symphony of Psalms (Igor Stravinsky)
Toward the Unknown Region (Ralph Vaughan Williams; text by Walt Whitman)