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Elgar/Payne - Symphony No 3 (LSO Davis) [CD]

Colin Davis Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
Price: 8.40 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Sir Colin Davis was President of the London Symphony Orchestra and Honorary Conductor of the Dresden Staatskapelle. From 1995 to 2006 he was Principal Conductor LSO, prior to which he was the orchestra's Principal Guest Conductor. He has recorded widely with Philips, BMG and Erato as well as LSO Live. His releases on LSO Live won numerous prizes including Grammy and Gramophone Awards and ... Read more in Amazon's Colin Davis Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Elgar/Payne - Symphony No 3 (LSO Davis) + Elgar-Symphony No 1 (LSO Davis) + Elgar: Symphony No. 2 (LSO Davis)
Price For All Three: 22.13

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Product details

  • Audio CD (6 May 2002)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Lso Live
  • ASIN: B000063DQE
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 52,635 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

In Autumn 2001, Colin Davis conducted an Elgar season with the London Symphony Orchestra, capturing the concerts on CD for the award-winning label LSO Live. They gave the Elgar/Payne Symphony No. 3 a week before Christmas. The stark, toiling first theme of the opening movement feels like an old man trudging through the snow lugging a heavy sledge behind him. Davis imparts a sense of gliding weight, of solid purpose without destination. The story of the symphony is well-known: Elgar died leaving only an incomplete short score (which the composer Anthony Payne completed in 1997)--solid purpose without realisation. The old man's mind wanders to a lovely and very different second theme, a lightly stepping female to which Davis allows beauty its own purpose. He shapes a sensuous minuet of the second movement.

Of the three recordings yet made of this symphony, the LSO's takes preference by its profoundly tragic account of the slow movement, Adagio solenne. Here there is purpose and destination, a feeling that all life ends in bleak despair. The following brassy fanfare, which announces the finale, suggests a grim determination to stiffen the sinews and face the 1930s. One senses Elgar's heart was not in it. The petering last pages Payne composed himself. The pianissimo gong-splash which ends the work sounds as unsure here as elsewhere. Nevertheless, this remains the best recording yet of Elgar's unfinished. --Rick Jones

Product Description

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very convincing - a wonderful gift 20 May 2011
By enthusiast TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
I found Payne's Elgar completion to be very convincing indeed. How wonderful to suddenly have a Third Elgar symphony! I know he often fails to please the British musical public but I am quite a fan of Colin Davis - he is always stimulating and often produces performances that are very memorable and rewarding. I have found his Elgar series for LSO Live to be excellent - each symphony sounding fresh and new and yet deeply ... Elgarian. This Third may be the best of the three. It is certainly a wondferful record.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The highlight of Davis' LSO Elgar Cycle 3 Oct 2010
Format:Audio CD
Many of the people looking at this item will know the story behind the Elgar "third" symphony; How Elgar said on his deathbed that his sketches for his third symphony should not be tinkered with. Well, the request was kept until the 1990's when the composer Anthony Payne was commissioned to gather the sketches and make them into a whole symphony. Was this really the right thing? Well, the outcome was most definitely a great piece, but probably nothing like Elgar would have intended. There are few places where one would listen and think that it was Elgar, many of the orchestration and harmonic tecniques Payne uses sound nothing like Elgar at all. As a conductor said to Payne on first seeing the score "Since when did Elgar finish a piece with a gong stroke?" But don't get me wrong, this is a really great piece of music.

Enough about the actual piece, lets move onto the performance.

Sir Colin Davis has a great insight of the piece, he uses well judged tempi and handles dynamics to perfection, leading to the most exciting climaxes and beautiful quiet sections. The playing of the LSO is impeccable, and the orchestra makes a brilliant sound together, with extra glorious brass.
The performance is consistently good throughout each of the four movements, but I am especially impressed by the handling of the two inner movements. The magic and mystery in the scherzo is really brought out and the adagio is played so passionately.

Many people critisize the sound quality of the LSO Live cd's but I am actually rather fond of it. It is rather dry sounding, but the balance is fantastic.

I would say that on hearing all of Davis's Elgar on the LSO Live label, that this is the highlight. But then again, this isn't the best set of Elgar orchestral music available...
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6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
The major interest in the Payne elaborations, the very few recordings of such a high profile completion, the element of hypothesis over the intended and the unwritten, and the window this offers on the composer and his time, all make it interesting that this recording has not inspired greater consumer response.

This review, of the Elgar 3 actually in the box set of all three symphonies, every one recommended, can only praise this handsomely recorded, produced, and presented LSO in-house issue. As "own label" numbers increase and gain approval, LSO is at the forefront given these standards (as with the Haitink Beethoven cycle, and the Davis Dream of Gerontius). Budget buying has always been an art, but gems do lurk amongst the commendable Naxos and even the variable to abysmal Regis and Brilliant reissues/rehashes. The LSO label brings a quality format, easily digested and navigable, with English-French-German translations and no meagreness in the authoritative, informed and informing booklet notes. (I found 2 spelling errors.) The recording quality (especially given the live element) deserves applause for engineer Tony Faulkner. Only in the Elgar 2 in the box set (not the Elgar 3 discussed here) is there the strangest warbling, seemingly of an audience member, which one would think could have been engineered or edited out from two sessions-worth of material.

In Elgar 3 there are no such sounds, indeed the recording is without any "white noise" or intrusive elements whatsoever, maintaining excellent quality throughout. What is in evidence is a great volume range, for which Davis and the LSO should be credited.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Elgar in many respects 21 April 2009
Format:Audio CD
I had dithered about investing in the "Elgar" third symphony, but I was pleased with the work and the performance when I sat down to listen. Not the 'complete' Elgar experience, but it has many moment of delight and emotion which make it unquestionably 'Elgarian'.
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0 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Elgar symphony No 3 11 Feb 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This item was bought for a client of mine who has difficuty in getting out shopping.
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