Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Edward Elgar Concert at New Brighton, 1899 Part 2

Further to my recent post about the Elgar Concert at New Brighton, on the 16th July 1899, I found this review in the library copy of the Musical Times for August 1899. To complete the picture, I have found yet another review of this concert: I will post it in due course!

"On the 16th [July 1899] another of these ‘personally conducted’ concerts gave an opportunity too rarely enjoyed by a provincial audience of appreciating Mr. Edward Elgar's powers as a composer. A very enjoyable afternoon's work included Mr. Elgar's original and fascinating Variations for orchestra (recently produced at a London Richter concert) the Imperial March, the superb Triumphal March from Caractacus, and the Serenade in E minor for strings. Mr. Reginald Brophy sang the song 'As a Spirit didst Thou pass’, from The Light of Life, and the long but stirring scena beginning ‘And King Olaf heard the cry,’ from King Olaf, and did full justice to them. Particular interest was lent to the concert by the production, for the first time in public, of Three Characteristic Pieces for orchestra (Mazurka, Serenade Mauresque and Contrasts: the Gavotte, A.D. 1700 and 1900). They are early works, being numbered Op. 10, but they have recently been scored and partly re-written and they well display Mr. Elgar's gift of inventing fresh melodies and captivating master of his art. Altogether this was one of the most interesting and enjoyable concerts of the series, as far as it has progressed, series which has shown and will show that there is no lack of beautiful British music upon which to draw when arranging orchestral concerts. For his devotion to our native art Mr. Granville Bantock deserves the warmest thanks of all British musicians, and we exclaim, ‘O si sic omnes!’ [1] But why has he altogether omitted his own name from the list of British composers represented at this festival? Such modesty is almost uncanny."
Musical Times Aug 1 1899 (with minor edits)

[1]'Oh, if only everybody acted so

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