Thursday, May 1, 2014

Elgar's Third Symphony

Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)
For those who might have missed more of this composer, there is now a third symphony reconstructed from fragments by Anthony Payne. Our reaction to this work is probably a lot like that of the tremendous public acceptance of this work. It came 60 years later, but this work will no doubt be performed more often, perhaps as often as his first two. Is it genuine Elgar? Well, it's frankly as close as it's likely to get to the composer's unmistakable style. Something like a synthesis or an outgrowth of his first two symphonies, you hear more and more of those exquisite Elgar moments. What I've always found remarkable about Elgar's music is how often I recall a phrase or a moment in one of his great symphonies, the Enigma or the concertos and then recall from whence it came. Gratefully we have this remarkable testament to a prior musical epoch. Enjoy! 

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