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The eloquence of Edward Elgar

I have just got in, hot and tired after my trudge back from the office. Flicking on the television, and, behold on BBC 1, is the first night at the Proms, commencing the famous series of music nights held for a period of weeks at the Royal Albert Hall.

The orchestra is bashing out a piece by Edward Elgar right now, a composer associated – not entirely correctly – with brash British patriotism. In the current climate, it makes me smile rather wryly that this supreme genius of British music should be beamed into our homes on this sultry Friday evening, and via those lovely people at the BBC.

7 comments to The eloquence of Edward Elgar

  • The Beeb probably don’t know Elgar is British,otherwise his music would never get on the play list.

  • On the radio last weekend (in Tucson here), they put on Hilary Hahn playing the violin concerto (I think it was a beeb radio production). It was awesome.

  • Johnathan

    I heard this too. Very fine.

    The piece we heard, Cockaigne, as the announcer explained, is about London, rather than about an illegal substance.

  • John J. Coupal

    If the BBC didn’t know Elgar was British (believable), do you think they’d play Gustav Holst’s “The Planets – Jupiter”?

  • Julian Taylor

    Don’t equate the BBC’s political views with the magnificent Proms concerts. Listening to Berlioz, Mendelssohn and then Elgar’s Overture – Cockaigne, promptly followed on BBC2 by Tippett’s A Child of Our Time must surely equate to one of the high points of this week.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes, whatever they were thinking, the B.B.C. did broadcast the concerts – and that is a good thing.

  • Orson Olson

    After 9/11, in the weeks and months to follow, I returned several time to Elgar’s incomparably swaggering, confident, celebratory music.

    It was the antidote to the post-modern, morally relativist swill I had forcibly imbibed earlier.

    I highly recommend all British late romantics – but elgar in particular: the symphonies, the Dream of Gerontius, and more.

    He restoreth the soul, after helping one weep.