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Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 21 Jul 2012, 11:43
by Gavin
Surely one of the finest pieces of classical music ever composed.


Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 30 May 2013, 19:19
by Michael
Gavin recently posted Elgar's Nimrod. I wanted to follow that up with what I believe is one of the saddest pieces of music in the world - Elgar's Cello Concerto (1st Movement). Written in the aftermath of World War One as society (and Elgar himself) struggled to come to terms with Britain's staggering losses, I think it encapsulates the melancholy of that time.

The first time I heard it I imagined contrasting images - nostalgic scenes of summer gaiety in the spring and summer of 1914, contrasted with the aftermath in 1919. Young men and women walk, talk, eat, drink, and play together in the summer sunshine, then the scene fades. The sky is overcast, everyone wears funereal gray, and the men are almost all gone. What remains are shattered veterans, wounded in body and mind.

A full train pulls away from a station in early 1914, men and women talking together. When the music intensity builds to its height the scene fades and the men disappear; older, sadder women sit next to empty seats.

At the same time I feel there is a transcendent side to the loss, a sense that the separation is merely temporal, that the loved ones await on the other side of the veil.


Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 18 Nov 2013, 22:52
by Paul
Another good version of Nimrod, the commentary as well as the fine music.


Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 18 Nov 2013, 23:16
by Gavin
Powerful stuff. A beautiful slow rendition - I usually like a slow rendition. Also "Nimrod" has been extended here and has the choral addition (I notice this version is from the soundtrack of the film Elizabeth). Lovely video, stirring words. I think this is a piece of music we are all going to be able to stand behind in the coming months and years - I've thought of using it in videos myself and may yet do so.

Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 19 Nov 2013, 00:00
by Paul
Thanks for sorting out the embed Gavin.

Great that isn't it? Almost brings a tear to the eye. And Elizabeth yes, I realise now that where it's from. A fine film also I think.

Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 19 Nov 2013, 00:07
by Gavin
Yes, agreed (the embed code just didn't work because it had the time parameter included at the end).

Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 19 Nov 2013, 00:39
by Paul
Thnks again Gavin. Something else I've learned.

I agree also that more than maybe any other piece of music, this is an anthem for how we feel or to which we should get behind - at least for England.

Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 22 Nov 2013, 00:42
by Gavin
I'll leave it to viewers to notice what is most obvious about both the performing musicians and the audience here, given London's demographic (anyone could attend). The real pick-up point is at 4"53' - note there is an encore too. I suppose the Conservative Party will call this piece "racist" at some point!


Re: Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)

PostPosted: 23 Jan 2015, 12:52
by Yessica
I have played this a lot in the last weeks. Never heard of Elgar before I came to this boards though I love classical music.

Thanks a lot for sharing this.