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Saturday, February 24, 2018

Musical Interlude

(For politics, please scroll down)

Enjoy this lovely piece by the English composer Edward Elgar (1857-1934):


According to the YouTube blurb:
Elgar wrote this piece for his friend Augustus Jaeger, who encouraged him to continue when about to give up composing after a fit of depression.
"Nimrod" is Variation IX of Elgar's Enigma Variations. Here is the entirely of the Enigma Variations, conducted by Elgar himself (Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, 1926):

6 comments:

  1. I watched your first selection of the work in full screen.. a must to have a wonderful experience. It seems so modern...

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  2. The great Edward Elgar, possibly the most quinestessentially British composer since the days of Henry Purcell, Jeremiah Clarke, William Byrd, John Bull and Orlando Gibbons, then the German George Frederick Handel who chose Engand as is asopted home, and English baroque composers William Boyce, Maurice Green and others.

    Oddly, Elgar was an ardent ROMAN CATHOLIC–– not a member of the Church of England, yet the spirit of Power, Pride and Lyrical Passion that infuse his work could never be identified with any country other than England, –– as she was at the height of her glory before the hideous events of the Twentieth Century tore the world part, and left it in shreds.

    I have long felt Edward Elgar to have been consistently underrated. He stands as one of the greatest examples of the late-Romantic tradition, and that includes Brahms, Wagner, Richard Strass and Gustave Mahler, but few have ever said so in print.

    Elgar stands tall with Gustav Holst, Ralph Vaughan-Williams, Frederic Delius, and later Benjamin Britten.

    This single variation stands alone as a great masterpiece of orchestration and deep lyrical expression. It has been transcribed for very effectively for solo organ, providing the player has a large, well-maintained late-nineteenth or early twentieth-century instrument at his disposal.

    Ironically –– and so tragically typical of the flippant, sarcastic, perverse, irreverent culture we must live with today –– "Nimrod" in vulgar parlance is now used commonly to as a stand-in for Idiot, Moron, Imbecile, Jerk, Misfit, Geek, Nerd, Dork, Creeo, etc.

    To Elgar, however, "NIMROD" was a mighty heroic hunter or warrior, because the biblical Nimrod is described as such.

    Elgar's MUSIC, however, demonstrates a deep and intense feeling of AFFECTION tinged with AWE and certainly ADMIRATION.

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    Replies
    1. FT,
      Thank you for this additional information! I do appreciate it when you bring to our attention more information about the music I choose to post.

      Delete
  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've listened to the complete set of variations with great pleasure this morning after not having heard the work for a long time. To call this beautifully crafted casket of musical gems a "masterpiece" would be a profound understatement.

    I'm SO glad you thought to bring this lovely work to our attention.

    There is no better way to spend time than to sit quietly and and truly LISTEN to great music.

    Like prayer "it restoreth the soul."

    ReplyDelete

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