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Sir Adrian Boult - Elgar: The Complete EMI Recordings Box set

7 customer reviews

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Sir Adrian Boult - Elgar: The Complete EMI Recordings + Sir Adrian Boult - Vaughan Williams: The Complete EMI Recordings + The Complete Conductor - From Tchaikovsky to Gershwin
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Product details

  • Conductor: Sir Adrian Boult
  • Composer: Sir Edward Elgar
  • Audio CD (3 Jun. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 19
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: EMI CLASSICS.
  • ASIN: B00C68FJ0K
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 39,440 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By R. Kenchington on 18 Jun. 2013
At last! After nearly 10 years of campaigning, all of Sir Adrian Boult's EMI recordings of Elgar are finally brought together in one competitively priced box set.

And what a magnificent set it is too! Two versions apiece of the two symphonies, two 'In the South' overtures, two 'Falstaff's, two violin concertos and no less than four versions of the 'Enigma' Variations. In essence, these recordings offer a complete survey of Sir Adrian as the Elgar interpreter par excellence, beginning in 1920 and finishing in 1978 - practically the whole of his conducting career.

It's all here: overtures, marches, preludes, choral music and even a fascinating talk from Sir Adrian himself about 'The Apostles' and 'The Kingdom'.

It's fascinating to hear how Boult's performances developed over this period, from the no-nonsense urgency of the famous 1944 second symphony, to the glowing expanse of those classic 1960s and '70s recordings of 'The Dream of Gerontius' and smaller, more incidental treasures like 'Dream Children', 'The Wand of Youth' and 'The Sanguine Fan'.

Indeed, Boult's approach to Elgar's music ripened over the years - markedly so following the death of Barbirolli. After Sir John's passing, Sir Adrian felt he could introduce a more affectionate quality to his own performances - a quality you can hear in those lovingly conducted late versions of the symphonies, 'Cockaigne' and 'In the South'.

But whether it's tautly-conceived early recordings or 'Indian Summer' remakes, Boult's Elgar remained consistent in its approach to long-term structural control, clear orchestral balance and a painstaking fidelity to both the letter and the spirit of the score.
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"I feel that my reputation in the future is safe in your hands... Bless you!"
- Sir Edward Elgar to 27 year-old Adrian Boult (1920).

This 19 CD box contains all of Sir Adrian Boult's EMI recordings of Elgar,
from the 1932 BBC recording of Chopin's Funeral March (two years before Elgar's death)
to the 1978 Violin Concerto with Ida Haendel and the London Philharmonic (the year Boult retired from conducting).

There are a number of duplicates -
14 works were recorded twice, The Introduction and Allegro three times, and The Enigma Variations four times.
All are in this box.
Recorded 1967-1977 unless otherwise noted:

The Apostles
Bavarian Dances
Carillon
Chanson de Nuit and Chanson de Matin
Cockaigne Overture
Concerto for Cello (Pablo Casals - 1945 mono, Paul Tortelier - 1972 stereo)
Concerto for Violin (Yehudi Menuhin - 1965, Ida Haendel - 1978, both stereo)
Dream Children (1955 mono, 1974 stereo)
The Dream of Gerontius
The Dream of Gerontius, Prelude (1934 mono)
Elegy for strings
Empire March
Enigma Variations (1936 and 1953 mono, 1961 and 1976 stereo)

Falstaff - Symphonic Study (1950 mono, 1973 stereo)
Fantasia & Fugue in C minor - after Bach, BWV 537 (1949 mono, 1973 stereo)
Froissart Overture (1955 mono, 1971 stereo)
Funeral March (Chopin orch. Elgar) (1932 mono, 1974 stereo)
Grania and Diarmid, Op.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Robin of Sherwood on 17 Jun. 2013
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This release is self-recommending. Especially of interest are the BBCSO Enigma Variations (1937) and Second Symphony (1944) - both in excellent transfers! Also included are the superb Testament transfers of the post WWII LPO recordings (Symphony I & Falstaff etc). Otherwise all the other famous EMI material is included (including Philp Ledger's recording of Coronation Ode) - a veritable cornucopia of glorious music making in excellent transfers. Elgar was magnificently served by Sir Adrian Boult during a very lengthy and distinguished conducting career. Do not miss this release under any circumstances!
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Remarkable collection, one feels that through these recordings there is a link with Elgar himself, the recordings sound fresh, and as a collection has revitalised my love of Sir Edward. Nobilmente!
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