The Wicket Gate

Pilgrim, directed by the Evangelist, tries to see the wicket gate that marks the start of his journey to the Celestial City:

Sir Adrian Boult (conductor), John Noble (baritone), John Carol Case (baritone)
with the London Philharmonic Orchestra
EMI Classics CMS 7 64212 2

So starts a work that Vaughan Williams styled ‘a morality in a prologue, four acts and an epilogue’: The Pilgrim’s Progress. And so, also, starts the 5th symphony which makes extensive use of themes from this Morality.

On Wednesday our peregrinations will take us via the Slough of Despond (one of my favourite spots!) to the Celestial City; and to hear that state of ‘blessedness’ in which – according to Hugh Ottaway* – the symphony ends:

André Previn conducting the London Symphony Orchestra
BMG-RCA RED SEAL 82876-55708 – 2

* Vaughan Williams Symphonies

Course materials:

VW biography

The music:
André Previn – Symphony No. 5 in D: Preludio: Moderato
[Spotify search terms: vaughan williams “symphony no. 5” previn]

General musical materials:


Cycle of 5ths



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