Friday 30 Sep 2022 7.30 pm St Swithin’s Church – Concert: A Celebration of William Herschel’s Music

The Bristol Ensemble and the Vauxhall Players.
Image credit: (c)

Performed by The Bristol Ensemble and the Vauxhall Players and introduced by Dr Matthew Spring

This programme intermixes music composed by William Herschel during his years in Bath (1766-82) and in the six years he spent in the North of England, with music by those who worked with him and whose music he knew: Charles Avison, Thomas Linley, Venanzio Rauzzini and Benjamin Milgrove. We include music intended for the home, for the church and chapels, for the Assembly rooms, and for the Pleasure Gardens. Instrumental items are intermixed with vocal pieces, both unaccompanied and accompanied, to produce an introduced varied programme that charts the musical life of William Herschel.

  • William Herschel: Symphony di Camera no.4 in D minor (1760), Allegro moderato; Adagio ma non troppo; Allegro moderato
  • William Herschel: Three movements from 24 Capriccios for solo violin (1763), nos. 1, 11, 17
  • William Herschel: Service Music – Te Deum in G major
  • William Herschel: Solo for harpsichord in G major, from Sei Sonate per il Cembalo (1769): allegro grazioso
  • Charles Avison: trio sonata no.2, op.1, in G minor: Andante, Adagio, Allegro
  • Thomas Linley: Song with English guitar, ‘No flower that blows’; William Herschel: Song with Eighteenth-Century Spanish guitar ‘Ah! non lasciami’; Thomas Linley: Madrigal, ‘Let me careless and unthoughtful lying’
  • Venanzio Rauzzini – Opera Aria ‘Infelice! In tant orror’ from Pyramus and Tisbe (1775)
  • William Herschel; Serious Glee in three parts with band ‘We sing of love’; Duetto –‘with thee my Strephon; Pleasure Garden Patriot Song – ‘Let humble faithless France’ (1778)
  • William Herschel: Unaccompanied catches ‘You’r tipsy Tom’; ‘Pray let us sing a merry catch’; ‘Today I am just 29’;’Echo catch’ (1778)
  • Benjamin Milgrove: ‘Funeral Hymn on the death of George Whitfield’; ‘The rose had been washed’ – pleasure garden song with band
  • William Herschel: Symphony no. 9 in F (1761): Allegro assai, Andante assai, Allegretto

If you would like to listen to this music, a virtually identical concert by the same performers and introduced by Dr Matthew Spring, was recorded in a studio setting and is available on

Friday 23 Sep 2022 7.30 pm BRLSI Film showing – William Herschel and the Universe

Director George Sibley

Image credit: (c)

This event is part of H200 – the Herschel Society’s celebration of William Herschel on the bicentenary of his death.

William Herschel, a 42 year old musician and amateur astronomer, discovered the first “new” planet in history in 1781. His telescopes, observations and theories transformed what was the clockwork universe imagined by Isaac Newton into the evolutionary and wonder-filled cosmos we know today. This is the story of how modern astronomy took shape under the pre-industrial skies of the 18th century.

George Sibley is a film director based in Florida. He plans to be present to introduce the film, and to answer questions in the discussion that follows. A trailer of the film is available here.

The film is available on Amazon.

Sept/Oct 2022 Herschel 200: This month we marked the bicentenary of the death of William Herschel in 1822 with a series of three very special events:

Friday 23 Sep 2022 7.30 pm BRLSI Film showing – William Herschel and the Universe. The film director, George Sibley, from Florida, will introduce the film and answer questions afterwards.

Friday 30 Sep 2022 7.30 pm St Swithin’s Church, The Paragon, Bath – Concert: A Celebration of William Herschel’s Music, Performed by The Bristol Ensemble and the Vauxhall Players and introduced by Dr Matthew Spring.

Saturday 1 Oct 2022 09:30 – 17:45 BRLSI All-day conference – A Celebration of William Herschel’s Astronomy

You can also attend the two BRLSI events remotely on Zoom. Click on the above links for more information and further links to video recordings and the 3-D virtual telescope,

A full list of Herschel 200 events, including those of other organisations in the UK and other countries can be seen here – International Herschel 200 event list.

Friday 2 Sep 2022 7.30 pm BRLSI lecture – Exploring Astronomy and Space Through Philately – A Brief Introduction

Katrin Raynor-Evans FRAS

Image credit: (c) Katrin Raynor-Evans

The first astronomy themed stamp dates to 1887 when Brazil issued a perforated stamp, buff and blue in colour, depicting the Southern Cross, an asterism seen in the Southern Hemisphere. Even throughout the 1800s, stamps were being printed with astronomical watermarks, such as suns and stars and early stamps issued in Egypt were designed with a pyramid and star.
Over the decades, we have celebrated astronomy and space on stamps including comets, astronomers, man on the moon and events in the astronomical calendar such as solar eclipses. Exploring Astronomy and Space Through Philately will take you on an out of this world journey looking at and discussing a selection of astronomy and space themed stamps that have been issued all over the world, proving that we can enjoy the wonders of the Universe even on a cloudy night.

Katrin Raynor-Evans is a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society and Royal Geographical Society and also a member of the Cardiff Astronomical Society and Astro Space Stamp Society. She writes articles and interviews for popular astronomy magazines including the BBC Sky at Night, Popular Astronomy, Stanley Gibbons and has a regular monthly column for All About Stamps. She is co-authoring her first book and is the astronomer for the Country Focus show on BBC Radio Wales. Asteroid 446500 Katrinraynor is named after her.

This lecture will be delivered remotely from Wales, but may be attended either in the BRLSI or remotely on Zoom.

A recording of this lecture is freely available on YouTube here.