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Elgar / Payne - The Sketches for Symphony No. 3 [CD]

Anthony Payne , Sir Edward Elgar , Paul Daniel , Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Elgar / Payne - The Sketches for Symphony No. 3 + Elgar: Symphony No. 2 (LSO Davis) + Elgar/Payne - Symphony No 3 (LSO Davis)
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Product details

  • Orchestra: Paul Daniel, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Sir Edward Elgar, Paul Daniel
  • Composer: Sir Edward Elgar
  • Audio CD (1 Jan 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B00004RC80
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 153,566 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Symphony No. 3, Op. 88 (elaborated A. Payne): I. Allegro molto maestoso16:15Album Only
Listen  2. Symphony No. 3, Op. 88 (elaborated A. Payne): II. Scherzo: Allegretto 8:31Album Only
Listen  3. Symphony No. 3, Op. 88 (elaborated A. Payne): III. Adagio solenne15:23Album Only
Listen  4. Symphony No. 3, Op. 88 (elaborated A. Payne): IV. Allegro14:46Album Only

Product Description

Yet another Naxos big-hitter, presenting an interpretation which, in its clear-sighted control, lean urgency and fractionally more objective manners, marvellously complements Sir Andrew Davis's bestselling world premier recording on NMC. With Paul Daniel extracting some of the most accomplished playing heard from the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in many a month (and what a boon, by the way, to have the first and second violins so helpfully divided across the sound-stage), it's a performance to well and truly nail the weary old adage that Elgar's twilight invention somehow didn't do him justice at all. Timing-wise, the only eye-catching statistic comes in the "Allegretto" second movement, which Daniel dispatches over a minute quicker than Davis. As a result, the music perhaps takes on more of the character of a conventional scherzo rather than the incidental intermezzo it is under Davis. The glorious slow movement here resounds with an ideal combination of imposing defiance and tender vulnerability. The finale, too, is a terrific success, better held together than Davis's (and the concluding measures are handled with exceptional perception). Boasting really clear, excitingly wide-ranging engineering (the work of that highly-respected sound guru, Tony Faulkner), this deserves to sell by the bucket-load. --Andrew Achenbach

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece - By Two Composers 5 Nov 2003
Format:Audio CD
When Sir Edward Elgar died in 1934 it was generally believed that the symphony commissioned from him by the BBC died with him. It was known that he had written some sketches but that in total they amounted to little of substance. This was odd since a large proportion of these sketches were printed in facsimile in a book on Elgar, written by one of his friends shortly after his death. Some parts were already fully scored and many other parts were detailed and specific about Elgar's intentions; yet they caused little interest in the musical community at large, perhaps because Elgar had written nothing of major significance since the death of his wife in 1920 - so what would a handful of sketches contain? The few specialists who did show any inclination to do anything with the sketches were denied the opportunity since the Elgar family wanted to respect the composer's dying wish not to allow anyone to "tinker" with his symphony.
However, in 1995, realising that in ten years time the copyright on the sketches would expire, the family commissioned Anthony Payne, a composer, musicologist and Elgar enthusiast, to use the sketches to construct the symphony Elgar might have written. Payne worked with intensity and excitement, piecing together the "jigsaw" fragments and filling in where necessary.
The completed work, described as "The Sketches for Symphony no.3 elaborated by Anthony Payne" was performed for the first time in public in February 1998 by the BBC Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Andrew Davis to massive critical acclaim. These same forces had recorded the work two months earlier for the NMC label and the recording was released later in 1998.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Addictive 22 Mar 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Does it really matter which bits are Elgar and which are Payne? This is a glorious piece of music and a super recording. The sublime second subject of the first movement (Elgar's own, incidentally!) is enough to justify the purchase. Forget the why's, wherefore's, rights and wrongs of the piece: just enjoy the music!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Ralph Moore TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Having just reviewed the NMC disc which was the first recording of this "elaboration" of Elgar's sketches by Anthony Payne I wanted to hear this bargain Naxos version for purposes of comparison. I have to say that they are not so very different; timings are virtually identical (except in the Scherzo, where Daniel is considerably zippier) but differences there are which sway me slightly in favour of the first account.

First, it seems to me that in the first movement Paul Daniel does not quite secure the surging grandeur that Davis achieves. Daniel takes a nervier, more fluid tack and doesn't quite nail the big moments as Davis does. I prefer, too, Davis's more hesitant, mysterious approach to the fluttering Spanish-fan figure in the Scherzo, although it is true that this slightly repetitive movement could be said to outstay its welcome when taken more leisurely. Again, in the Adagio solenne, Davis brings greater weight and melancholy to the noble, opening theme and achieves a more poignant effect than Daniel, who is a bit perfunctory, in the gentle, pulsing passage beginning around four minutes in with its singing violas, sighing harps, and a plaintive solo clarinet. Both are tender in the concluding fade-out. In the final movement, Davis's restraint exposes its structural weaknesses more than Daniel's propulsion. It could be argued that Daniel has the more unified, symphonic overview and his brisker, tauter phrasing holds the music together better than Davis's more relaxed and affectionate manner.

I could imagine this music played with more luscious tone than either orchestra in question generates but it is noticeable that the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra is the more deficient in warmth in the strings, which are at times a little thin and edgy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unmistakably Elgarian and no mere pastiche 27 Mar 2011
By Ralph Moore TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
While this completion of Elgar's manuscript sketches may not be a masterpiece and is, to a large extent, the fruits of "educated guesswork and intuition" there is much in it which is redolent of genuine Elgarian inspiration and it would be ungrateful in the extreme to be snarky about Anthony Payne's labour of love. He modestly calls it an elaboration, a term taken to interpretative limits by his borrowing a haunting, repeated theme from the "The Wagon Passes" in "The Nursery Suite" which Elgar had recently completed before embarking on the symphony.

The test is how much of this music is moving and memorable and returning to this disc after an interval of some ten years I was struck by how much of it I recalled and was newly moved by. Despite the inevitable impression of the symphony lacking some cohesion, there are some uniquely beautiful fragments in each movement such as the angular, muscular first subject which opens the symphony and the equally typical, melting second subject with its falling intervals. The Scherzo has a delicate, crepuscular Spanish atmosphere reminding us that Elgar had an affinity with Latin sensuousness to complement his bristly British sturdiness. Best of all, I think is the Adagio featuring a noble brass theme combined with a Mahlerian breadth and tenderness. I concur with other commentators that the last movement is a mite ramshackle; a rumbustious martial tune melds awkwardly into a rather repetitive development before the allegro marches into a more reflective, "new, visionary world".

The BBC Symphony Orchestra plays well under Andrew Davis although I was conscious that they made more of the dreamier moments than those which called for more fire and passion. I have not yet heard Paul Daniel's account for Naxos and wonder if that has more spark, but find much to enjoy and admire in this very welcome and courageous performance.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars lively mongrel
This is a fine work by Sir Edward Elgar and Anthony Payne. The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra under Paul Daniel make a success of the music with good sectional playing. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Andrew C. Mitchell
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice music
I have always loved this work ever since I heard about it in '95.
I would love to find P&Cmarch 6
Published 5 months ago by David Michael Hawkins
4.0 out of 5 stars Elgar (and Payne's) 'Symphony No.3'
This is a performing edition elaborated by Anthony Payne of sketches for a third symphony left by Edward Elgar at his death in 1934. Read more
Published on 20 Aug 2012 by Dr. H. A. Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent recording of an afterword
A top flight performance of a work that has attracted a great deal of attention ever since Payne's broadcast on the sketches in 1995. Read more
Published on 10 July 2009 by Mondoro
5.0 out of 5 stars Symphony No.3 at its most spellbinding
I've been able to hear both Davises and Daniel conduct this (new) Elgar symphony, on record. To my mind, it is Andrew Davis and the BBCSO who make the strongest case for a work... Read more
Published on 3 Feb 2008 by Philoctetes
5.0 out of 5 stars Still the most compelling recording!
There are several recordings of Elgar's 3rd symphony, but this is still the most compelling and vivid account of the work by the great Elgar conductor, Andrew Davis.
Published on 10 Jan 2008 by Scriabinmahler
5.0 out of 5 stars Okay so it's not Elgar, but so what?
If the alternative to this elaboration of Elgar's sketches is no elaboration at all, then I'm all for it. Read more
Published on 27 Mar 2002 by Matt Westwood
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful glimpse of what might have been
.......I found this CD wonderfully stimulating. It gives the lie to the barren no ideas after the Cello Concerto image of Elgar. It knocks the davis version.....
Published on 24 Aug 2000
2.0 out of 5 stars Spot the composer
I expect most listeners to this disc to be like me, non-musicologists, with no copy of the score or Payne's written account of his painstaking reconstruction, just a liking for... Read more
Published on 23 Mar 2000
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