Poll

Which one is your personal favourite?

no.1
no.2
'no.3'
Impossible to choose!

Author Topic: The Elgar Symphony Poll  (Read 2639 times)

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Offline madaboutmahler

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The Elgar Symphony Poll
« on: December 16, 2011, 12:14:54 PM »
On the 'Elgar's Hillside' thread, this question is sometimes brought up, so I thought it would be a fun and fascinating idea to create a poll to see which one of the symphonies are our favourite. I've included 'the third' just in case someone turns up and criticises me for not doing so.... then again, someone might criticise me for including it....
If you find it too hard to choose between the two, then just choose impossible. But, from what I've heard, there tends to be one that you love just a tad more than the other. For me it is no.2, which gets my vote.

Will be interesting to see the results.
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Offline 71 dB

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2011, 12:24:36 PM »
The second is my favorite.  ;D
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Offline Lisztianwagner

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2011, 12:33:58 PM »
I think Elgar No.2 will get my vote as well, it's a very beautiful and melodious work :)
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Offline madaboutmahler

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2011, 03:45:05 AM »
Thank you to those who have voted! Please take your vote the rest of you! :)
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Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2011, 03:51:57 AM »
This is one of those polls where I have to imagine someone pointing a gun at my head and threatening to shoot if I don't make a choice. Otherwise I can't choose. Even the Third can't be easily dismissed (a pity Elgar didn't live to finish it himself). So, with a .44 Magnum pointed at my head, I pick the Second.

Sarge
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he was as f*cked-up as you are."
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Offline madaboutmahler

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2011, 04:01:23 AM »
This is one of those polls where I have to imagine someone pointing a gun at my head and threatening to shoot if I don't make a choice. Otherwise I can't choose. Even the Third can't be easily dismissed (a pity Elgar didn't live to finish it himself). So, with a .44 Magnum pointed at my head, I pick the Second.

Sarge

Yes, I agree. It really is that hard to choose! And I also agree, the third can't be easily dismissed but I doubt that it will get many votes here. It certainly is a great piece, and Payne did a great job with it. Would have been interesting to have read Elgar's mind to discover how the piece would have turned out if he had lived longer though.... but still, the '3rd' remains an absolute favourite of mine.
Thank you Sarge.
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Offline MDL

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2011, 04:23:01 AM »
I don't know 3 well enough to comment, but I think 2 is far greater than 1. Time to dig out that recording of 3. How do our Elgar experts rate the Naxos/Daniel recordings (the only CDs I have of the symphonies, apart from a few BBC Music Magazine freebies)?

Offline madaboutmahler

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2011, 05:44:02 AM »
Wow - no.3 recieved a vote! :D Who voted for it?
Time to dig out that recording of 3. How do our Elgar experts rate the Naxos/Daniel recordings (the only CDs I have of the symphonies, apart from a few BBC Music Magazine freebies)?

Very highly! The first recording I got of the symphony and my favourite recording of the symphony by far. It's about time for another conductor to take up the symphony though. I wonder when the last concert performance of it was....

Keep voting! :D
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Offline Leo K.

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2011, 08:10:45 AM »
It appears I'm the only vote for No.1 so far! I'm a newbie though, and I'm only learning these works. It sure is fun being taken away by a new composer!

 8)

Offline TheGSMoeller

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2011, 08:29:08 AM »
I voted No.2, with my choice of recording being Sinopoli/Philharmonia on DG (I know Sarge agrees  ;D)

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2011, 08:46:00 AM »
It appears I'm the only vote for No.1 so far! I'm a newbie though, and I'm only learning these works. It sure is fun being taken away by a new composer!

 8)

I'm shocked...not that you voted for #1 but that no one else has  :o

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: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2011, 08:47:22 AM »
Sinopoli....I know Sarge agrees  ;D

So do the boys   8)

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 hbswebmaster

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2011, 08:56:52 AM »
No. 2 for me also; although I have to say that I do have a soft spot for the Elgar/Payne third. I went to two Barbican performances five years apart, both under Sir Colin Davis (the second was recorded for LSO Live) and that remains my favourite performance; very involved. Daniel is good though, although Colin Davis' orchestra is the more assured. I say 'Colin Davis' because there's another Davis: Sir Andrew of that ilk, who conducted the premiere with the  BBCSO; I have a recording of that transmission, and that's the version I tend to play alongside Sir Colin, since as it was the premiere, it seems to be more 'authentic'?

Not so keen on no.1, apart from the horse-laughs in the first movement!

;)

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2011, 11:41:26 AM »
It appears I'm the only vote for No.1 so far!

I have joined you. I do think that #2 is probably the more interesting and multi-layered work. But #1 is a lot of fun to listen to, very invigorating, and I do listen to it more than its slightly cryptic and unsettling successor.
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Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2011, 12:22:42 PM »
The choice is difficult, but not impossible - No. 2 for me.
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

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Re: The Elgar Symphony Poll
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2011, 01:18:26 PM »
For me it's no contest: in terms of favourite, it's No. 1 all the way. It's occupied my personal favourite symphony number one slot for nearly 50 years, which could of course indicate how little personal growth I've achieved in that time; but I prefer to think it demonstrates its inexhaustibility. It has inspired me, year in, year out, to believe that the best might still be possible, even when we're confronted with the worst. I don't think I can ask more of a work of art than that.

No. 2, I'm told, by people far more knowledgeable than me, is a greater piece of music, and I'm sure they're right. But I find it a disturbing, uneasy work: full of great beauty, but a tragic, insecure, restless beauty, in which hope may be vain. It may well convey a great truth, in both a general artistic sense and a human one, and he needed to write it; but it prevents me from regarding it as a favourite. It troubles me too much.

No.3. Well, maybe it shouldn't be on the list. But who can forget those great swelling waves of warning that introduce the symphony, once they've heard it? And who can forget the heartbreaking and fragile femininity of the second subject, as it first appears, in such a daunting musical context? That's pure late Elgar, reaching down to his roots, and contemplating whether fear and power can somehow be redeemed by gentleness.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2011, 01:20:23 PM by Elgarian »