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Author Topic: Elgar's Hillside  (Read 85860 times)

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Offline raduneo

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1420 on: April 23, 2012, 05:31:04 AM »
Posted this in the 'Recs You Are Considering,' then saw a post by Daniel suggesting I wander over here instead:

Currently my only Elgar symphonies recordings are Tate/LSO and Elgar himself. I love Tate/LSO because it finally explained to me why I should cherish these symphonies, and it's quite hard for me to imagine the works going any other way but the aching elegiac warmth of those readings. But I also know that it's an Eccentric reading - or a Sarge-ic reading, very slow but sturdily built. Solti's Decca duo is on sale at Presto for $8 right now; would that make for an enjoyable contrast?

I will have to revisit Tate then! Those were the first recordings of the symphonies I got! :)

So far, I have a clear favorite for #1 in Hurst: tender when it needs to be, very noble, yet never bombastic, with plenty of vitality in the right places, a great sense of lyricism, and a very good attention to detail. LOVE it! I do not however have a clear favorite for #2 from what I've listened to.

Offline Elgarian

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1421 on: April 23, 2012, 08:47:21 AM »
While I love Sinopoli's Elgar (especially the Second), if you're looking for maximum contrast, Solti does make more sense. There's more to a performance than tempo, of course, but Tate and Sinopoli have near identical timings in many movements and, to me, that puts them in roughly the same camp. Boult EMI would make another good choice.

Elgar Symphony No.1

C.Davis         21:00   7:52     12:47   12:45
Sinopoli        20:41   7:10     14:10    13:17
Tate             20:39   7:10     14:16    12:22
Slatkin          20:28   6:31    13:40    12:31
Elder            20:05   7:14     12:33    12:15
Previn          19:26   6:52     12:58    12:27
Boult (EMI)   18:33   7:14     10:53    12:01
Solti             17:45   7:08     12:12    11:38


Elgar Symphony No.2

Sinopoli         20:43   18:25   9:00   17:14
Haitink          20:33   15:56   8:25   13:57
Tate              19:17   17:21   8:28   17:23
C.Davis         18:23   16:19   8:26   14:30
Boult (EMI)   17:29   14:13    8:00   13:15
Downes        17:16   15:01   8:13   15:33
Slatkin          17:15   15:11  7:40    14:43
Solti             15:30   15:30   7:49   12:33
Elgar            14:33   12:59   7:55   12:20
Svetlanov     14:01   15:54   7:11   14:00

Interesting comparison here (thanks for this helpful list, Sarge). Take a look at the timings for Boult's 1976 live Proms recording of the 1st symphony - the one that's been arousing so much enthusiasm for me and others (see #1415 above):

17:22  7:05  9:04  11:19

Remarkably, I don't feel even the slightest sense of undue haste; it's such a masterly performance that it seems perfectly natural.

« Last Edit: April 23, 2012, 08:50:02 AM by Elgarian »

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1422 on: April 23, 2012, 09:22:40 AM »
Elgar Symphony No.1

C.Davis         21:00   7:52     12:47   12:45

Wow, strange to see the timings put so plainly here. I had the feeling this performance would drag on until the end of time :(
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Online karlhenning

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1423 on: April 23, 2012, 09:25:18 AM »
Interesting comparison here (thanks for this helpful list, Sarge). Take a look at the timings for Boult's 1976 live Proms recording of the 1st symphony - the one that's been arousing so much enthusiasm for me and others (see #1415 above):

17:22  7:05  9:04  11:19

Remarkably, I don't feel even the slightest sense of undue haste; it's such a masterly performance that it seems perfectly natural.

A fresh lesson that it's not merely the time taken to walk through the music, but the manner.

Copy that thanks to the Sarge!
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
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nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1424 on: April 23, 2012, 11:18:53 AM »
Interesting comparison here (thanks for this helpful list, Sarge). Take a look at the timings for Boult's 1976 live Proms recording of the 1st symphony - the one that's been arousing so much enthusiasm for me and others (see #1415 above):

17:22  7:05  9:04  11:19

Remarkably, I don't feel even the slightest sense of undue haste; it's such a masterly performance that it seems perfectly natural.

That's fascinating. Even faster than Solti! I failed to respond to your original post but did read it with interest...well, more than interest: I ordered the disc. It was shipped today so I might have it tomorrow morning. Looking forward to it. Boult seldom disappoints.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1425 on: April 23, 2012, 11:31:46 AM »
Wow, strange to see the timings put so plainly here. I had the feeling this performance would drag on until the end of time :(

Which was my response to Davis too. And yet, Sinopoli and Tate, even slower in some movements, don't have that effect (on me, anyway). Which proves Karl's point:

A fresh lesson that it's not merely the time taken to walk through the music, but the manner.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline Lisztianwagner

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1426 on: April 23, 2012, 12:38:39 PM »
Edward Elgar is one of the English composers I admire most, along with Gustav Holst and Ralph Vaughan-Williams. :)
His music is very beautiful, harmonic and elegant, but the same time, incredibly expressive and poetical, full of strenght and intesity, with a very majestic style and a splendid orchestration, really brilliant.
My favourite Elgar's works are the symphonies, the Enigma Variations, the Violin Concerto, Salut d'Amour, the Cello Concerto, Cockaigne and Froissart. I also appreciate the Pomp & Circumstance Marches a lot, especially No.2, No.4 and No.5; they are doubtless extremely involving and enjoyable, although I think Elgar is a bit too associated with this series of compositions.....they're are Elgar's most famous work , but not the most beautiful as well.

By the way, I would be interested in buying another recording of the symphonies, so far I've got just Solti's version; any suggestion? :)
« Last Edit: April 23, 2012, 01:11:38 PM by Lisztianwagner »
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Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1427 on: April 23, 2012, 12:50:22 PM »
By the way, I would interested in buying another recording of the symphonies, so far I've got just Solti's version; any suggestion? :)

My favorites (not necessarily recommendations--precede with caution: I accept responsibility only for my own taste  ;D ) :

1 - Previn and Boult EMI (we'll soon see if the BBC Boult will displace that)

2 - Sinopoli and Tate, both about as different from Solti as can be imagined.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline madaboutmahler

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1428 on: April 23, 2012, 01:07:10 PM »
Edward Elgar is one of the English composers I admire most, along with Gustav Holst and Ralph Vaughan-Williams. :)
His music is very beautiful, harmonic and elegant, but the same time, incredibly expressive and poetical, full of strenght and intesity, with a very majestic style and a splendid orchestration, really brilliant.
My favourite Elgar's works are the symphonies, the Enigma Variations, the Violin Concerto, Salut d'Amour, the Cello Concerto, Cockaigne and Froissart. I also appreciate the Pomp & Circumstance Marches a lot, especially No.2, No.4 and No.5; they are doubtless extremely involving and enjoyable, although I think Elgar is a bit too associated with this series of compositions.....they're are Elgar's most famous work , but not the most beautiful as well.

By the way, I would interested in buying another recording of the symphonies, so far I've got just Solti's version; any suggestion? :)

Beautiful description! All of those works you mention are very special to me. Overall, I could easily say Elgar is one of the most special composers to me. A composer who I have grown up with, who I have enjoyed from the very beginning of my musical life! :)

As I have been saying, perhaps try Boult's EMI set, or Elder's set with the Halle. Also, I would really really recommend you get Downes' performance with the BBC Philharmonic on Naxos. The Solti is excellent, so you made a good first choice! :) I really wished that Bernstein had recorded the symphonies. He did such an amazing job with the Enigma Variations, his recording is my favourite performance of the piece.
"Music is ... A higher revelation than all Wisdom & Philosophy"
— Ludwig van Beethoven

Offline Lisztianwagner

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1429 on: April 23, 2012, 01:42:48 PM »
My favorites (not necessarily recommendations--precede with caution: I accept responsibility only for my own taste  ;D ) :

1 - Previn and Boult EMI (we'll soon see if the BBC Boult will displace that)

2 - Sinopoli and Tate, both about as different from Solti as can be imagined.

Sarge
Beautiful description! All of those works you mention are very special to me. Overall, I could easily say Elgar is one of the most special composers to me. A composer who I have grown up with, who I have enjoyed from the very beginning of my musical life! :)

As I have been saying, perhaps try Boult's EMI set, or Elder's set with the Halle. Also, I would really really recommend you get Downes' performance with the BBC Philharmonic on Naxos. The Solti is excellent, so you made a good first choice! :) I really wished that Bernstein had recorded the symphonies. He did such an amazing job with the Enigma Variations, his recording is my favourite performance of the piece.

Haha, no problem, Sarge, and thanks for the feedback ;D I read very good reviews about Boult's recording, which was also recommended me by Daniel before; I think I may choose this one, then. Anyway, Previn on EMI looks very interesting too.

Thank you, Daniel :) Very well, besides Boult's set, and eventually Previn's one, I may also consider Downes' performance. Yes, absolutely, Bernstein's Enigma Variations is simply outstanding, impressive; I wished that he had recorded the symphonies too, I'm sure they would have been excellent. But at least he made some performances of Elgar's pieces, Karajan never did it. :(
Certainly, I know Elgar's music is very important for you, that's wonderful it is able to strike and inspire you in a so deep way; I could easily share the feeling about me and Johann Strauss as I've grown up listening to the Neujahrskonzerte. :)
"Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents." - Ludwig van Beethoven

Offline madaboutmahler

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1430 on: April 23, 2012, 01:45:59 PM »
Thank you, Daniel :) Very well, besides Boult's set, and eventually Previn's one, I may also consider Downes' performance. Yes, absolutely, Bernstein's Enigma Variations is simply outstanding, impressive; I wished that he had recorded the symphonies too, I'm sure they would have been excellent. But at least he made some performances of Elgar's pieces, Karajan never did it. :(
Certainly, I know Elgar's music is very important for you, that's wonderful it is able to strike and inspire you in a so deep way; I could easily share the feeling about me and Johann Strauss as I've grown up listening to the Neujahrskonzerte. :)

My pleasure, I always love sharing my passion for these two works. Two of my favourite pieces of all time. :) Glad to hear that are going to get the Boult set, please let us know when you do! The Downes should be available really inexpensively from the Amazon MP if you are tempted by the incredible praise that myself and various others have given it on this thread!
Yes, I do sometimes wonder what Karajan's Elgar would have been like... would certainly have been fascinating to hear!

:)
"Music is ... A higher revelation than all Wisdom & Philosophy"
— Ludwig van Beethoven

Offline Lisztianwagner

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1431 on: April 23, 2012, 02:06:09 PM »
My pleasure, I always love sharing my passion for these two works. Two of my favourite pieces of all time. :) Glad to hear that are going to get the Boult set, please let us know when you do! The Downes should be available really inexpensively from the Amazon MP if you are tempted by the incredible praise that myself and various others have given it on this thread!
Yes, I do sometimes wonder what Karajan's Elgar would have been like... would certainly have been fascinating to hear!

:)

I will :) I've always wanted to increase my Elgar's collection, but unfortunately here in Italy it's a little hard to find recordings which are not the Enigma Variations or Pomp & Circumstance, and unless you're a great lover of classical music, those ones are the only works you could hear talking about. :( I remember a friend of mine called Elgar "the Englishman mad for marches", because of Pomp and Circumstance, I suppose; he left me speechless.
I think I will take a look at Downes' version on Amazon to have a clearer idea of what it is like, I'm rather curious. :)
Haha, well, it would have certainly been a masterpiece, as all Karajan's performances!!
"Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents." - Ludwig van Beethoven

eyeresist

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1432 on: April 23, 2012, 05:59:00 PM »

I have to ask, since I'm the only one who's mentioned him, am I somehow the only one here who owns the Barbirolli EMI recordings?

Offline Jeffrey Smith

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1433 on: April 23, 2012, 06:05:02 PM »
I have to ask, since I'm the only one who's mentioned him, am I somehow the only one here who owns the Barbirolli EMI recordings?

I have them as part of that 30 CD Elgar EMI box (the one where they gathered all their most popular/famous recordings), but to tell the truth I've only listened to them once.  My other recording of the symphonies is Tate.  To tell the truth,  when I want Elgar, I generally go for Gerontius,  the Enigma Variations and the Cello and Violin Concertos before I pop onto the symphonies.
Every kind of music is good, except the boring kind.
---Rossini

Offline Elgarian

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1434 on: April 23, 2012, 11:28:34 PM »
Edward Elgar is one of the English composers I admire most, along with Gustav Holst and Ralph Vaughan-Williams. :)
His music is very beautiful, harmonic and elegant, but the same time, incredibly expressive and poetical, full of strenght and intesity, with a very majestic style and a splendid orchestration, really brilliant.
My favourite Elgar's works are the symphonies, the Enigma Variations, the Violin Concerto, Salut d'Amour, the Cello Concerto, Cockaigne and Froissart. I also appreciate the Pomp & Circumstance Marches a lot, especially No.2, No.4 and No.5; they are doubtless extremely involving and enjoyable, although I think Elgar is a bit too associated with this series of compositions.....they're are Elgar's most famous work , but not the most beautiful as well.

Ilaria, do you have, or have you heard (at this point, groans are heard all around, because this is a drum I frequently bang) his The Spirit of England? In a lifetime of listening to Elgar, this is the piece above all that, for me, expresses his particular sense of longing for an ideal of nobility, chivalry, brotherhood, in the face of tragedy and loss. Out of all my shelvesful of Elgar recordings, this is the one I'd take to my desert island: his most neglected masterpiece. The singing in this particular version is stupendous.



Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Elgar-Coronation-Ode-Spirit-England/dp/B000000A9N/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1335252242&sr=1-1

Offline Elgarian

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1435 on: April 23, 2012, 11:33:23 PM »
I have to ask, since I'm the only one who's mentioned him, am I somehow the only one here who owns the Barbirolli EMI recordings?

Certainly not. That EMI 5-CD box of Barbirolli's Elgar is an essential, I'd say.


Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1436 on: April 24, 2012, 12:41:17 AM »
I have to ask, since I'm the only one who's mentioned him, am I somehow the only one here who owns the Barbirolli EMI recordings?

I have the 5-CD box too (with a different cover) but I acquired it after I'd compiled the timings. I'll add them to the list now.




Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

eyeresist

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1437 on: April 24, 2012, 02:39:23 AM »
I have the 5-CD box too (with a different cover) but I acquired it after I'd compiled the timings. I'll add them to the list now.


I have that one. I don't think the cover colour looks so much like baby shit in real life  ::)

Online karlhenning

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1438 on: April 24, 2012, 04:48:59 AM »
Ilaria, do you have, or have you heard (at this point, groans are heard all around, because this is a drum I frequently bang) his The Spirit of England? In a lifetime of listening to Elgar, this is the piece above all that, for me, expresses his particular sense of longing for an ideal of nobility, chivalry, brotherhood, in the face of tragedy and loss. Out of all my shelvesful of Elgar recordings, this is the one I'd take to my desert island: his most neglected masterpiece. The singing in this particular version is stupendous.



Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Elgar-Coronation-Ode-Spirit-England/dp/B000000A9N/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1335252242&sr=1-1

’Tis a fine drum, and you employ a soft beater.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://henningmusick.blogspot.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Elgarian

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Re: Elgar's Hillside
« Reply #1439 on: April 24, 2012, 04:53:12 AM »
’Tis a fine drum, and you employ a soft beater.

Either that, Karl, or you forgot to remove your ear-protection.

BANG! The BANG! Spirit BANG! of BANG! England BANG!

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