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The Starlight Express

Edward Elgar, Vernon Handley Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: 16.50
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Product details

  • Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Conductor: Vernon Handley
  • Composer: Edward Elgar
  • Audio CD (3 May 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Classics for Pleasure
  • ASIN: B0001ZM8V8
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 27,708 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
Listen  1. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster): 1. First Prelude (Overture and Organ-Grinder's Song 1: To the Children)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 7:010.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act I (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle), Scene 1: 2-5. (The Earth had forgotten it's a star; The Lamplighter passes - LighValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:140.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act I (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle), Scene 1: 6-7. (Daddy's star story - The Star Cave)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:030.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act I (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle), Scene 1: 8-10. (The Gardener comes - A great Un-wumbler's coming - Jinny tries onValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:230.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act I (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle), Scene 1: 11. Interlude (The Organ-Grinder and the Sprites bring Henry's luggage)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley0:530.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act I (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle), Scene 2: 12, 14. (What jolly stars! - Good night) [No.13 omitted]Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:290.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster): 15. Second Prelude (Organ-Grinder's Song 2: The Blue-Eyes Fairy)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 3:340.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 17-18. (Orion and the Pleiades - Melody; Organ-Grinder's Song 3: The CuValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 6:370.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 19. Interlude (Home to sleep)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:230.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 20-22. (Outside the Star Cave - The Wumbled people call out for Star-DuValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 3:020.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 23-25. (Entry of the Sweep - Entry of the Organ-Grinder - Entry of theValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley0:430.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 26-28. (Entry of the Laugher; Laugher's Song 1: I'm everywhere - EntryValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:240.99  Buy MP3 
Listen13. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 29. (Organ-Grinder's Song 4: Wake up, you little Night Winds)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:180.99  Buy MP3 
Listen14. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 30. Ballet (The Dance of the Little Winds)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:360.99  Buy MP3 
Listen15. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 31-32. (The kind old Dustman - Into the Star Cave)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:340.99  Buy MP3 
Listen16. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 33. (Loading up with Star-Dust) [Sun Dance from 'The Wand of Youth', SuValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:380.99  Buy MP3 
Listen17. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 1 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest): 34. Interlude (The Wistaria Pension at night)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:090.99  Buy MP3 
Listen18. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 2 (Bourcelles: The Wistaria Pension): 35-36. (The Lamplighter at work - Off again)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:030.99  Buy MP3 
Listen19. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 3 (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle): 37-38. (The Den at night - Un-wumbling Daddy and Laugher's Songs 2 & 3:Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 4:110.99  Buy MP3 
Listen20. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act II, Scene 3 (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle): 39-41. (The Lamplighter at work again - Departure of the Sprites - TheValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 2:250.99  Buy MP3 
Listen21. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster): 42. Third Prelude (Organ-Grinder's Song 5: My Old Tunes)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 4:490.99  Buy MP3 
Listen22. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 1 (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle): 43-45. (Jane Anne's Song - Miss Waghorn - The source of life; Daddy'sValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 3:000.99  Buy MP3 
Listen23. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 1 (Bourcelles: The Den at La Citadelle): 46. Interlude (The Waltz of the Blue-Eyes Fairy)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 4:130.99  Buy MP3 
Listen24. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 2 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest at Night): 47. (Outside the Star Cave again...Laugher's Song 4: Laugh aValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 8:080.99  Buy MP3 
Listen25. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 2 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest at Night): 48. (The spirit of Miss Waghorn - Daddy's tender light - DaddValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:320.99  Buy MP3 
Listen26. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 2 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest at Night): 49. (Our Fairyland - Ensemble)Valerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 1:590.99  Buy MP3 
Listen27. The Starlight Express - Incidental Music, Op. 78 (1989 Digital Remaster), Act III, Scene 2 (Outside Bourcelles: The Pine Forest at Night): 50. Finale (The Dance of the Pleiades - Song (soprano) - SongValerie Masterson/Derek Hammond-Stroud/London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley 4:230.99  Buy MP3 


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully imaginative & inspired performance! 26 Dec 2009
By Scriabinmahler TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
This is the most comprehensive recording of 'Starlight Express' available on CD (TT78:57), based on Elgar's own recording on eight 78rpm discs. The all three acts are presented as faithfully as possible to the original 300 page score and to the world premiere version realised by the composer himself. Elgar's creative, compositional process and the story of the first production, the historical background of the original tale which inspired the composer, and the synopsis, and the original text of the songs are all thoroughly documented in 27 page booklet. Learning about late Elgar's great enthusiasm for this work and its historical context in the raging Great War, deepens your appreciation of this largest stage work Elgar ever composed, and makes for a poignantly moving listening experience.

'Starlight Express' is filled with amazingly inspired melodies and imbued with the magical, other-worldly beauty of childhood innocence. I listen to this music on every Christmas day alongside Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker - just a right kind of music to let you forget all the meaningless stress associated with the whole business of being merry (often forcefully!) this time of year.

All these memorable songs and masterly orchestration suggest what might have happened to British classical music history, if Elgar had become a great opera composer. As in his great oratorios, it seems, the spirit of creative inspiration visited the composer most naturally, when his thoughts and imaginations were guided by literatures. Elgar had a rare gift of uniting the literary narratives with the musical ideas in such an intimate and inseparable way, that the essence of the story is communicated to listeners even without knowing the whole story!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
This originally appeared on 2 full-price lps in 1976. The BBC broadcast them on Radio 3. Most of the performance was new, excerpts had been recorded by Elgar on 78s and George Hurst had recorded selections in Bournemouth, very well.
Vernon Handley had top-quality soloists in Valerie Masterson, at her peak, and Derek Hammond-Stroud, characterful and sensitive. The LPO played marvellously for him, with rich sound and extremely expressive phrasing, so vital in this of all pieces.
To hymn this cd would take ages, but there is one moment, for me, which illustrates why this is a great work and a great performance of it. Track 21, verse 4 of the Organ Grinder's song. Towards the end of the verse Handley brings out such delicacy and refinement of sound and phrasing and Hammond-Stoud, sits beautifully on the words "As that night in leafy June, when I caught the children dancing..." This is a tear-inspiring moment, as it encapsulates what Elgar was doing in the work. The booklet essay is a masterpiece of analysis and insight by the great Elgar scholar Jerrold Northrop Moore. Elgar put his whole being into this work and had a unique affection for it - as witness his letters and reactions to its fate.
When, in the final pages, he quotes the first part of "The First Noel", he brings such tears of remembrance and spirit-lifting grace, the work moves even the coldest hearts, knowing that Elgar meant this music very deeply. You cannot appreciate Elgar and not know this work, and this is THE recording to have. It is a great tribute to the late Vernon Handley that we can share in its glories.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Elgar's lighter music at its best 28 Mar 2011
By Bacchus TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
I confess that I am writing this review after only one hearing.

Elgar was a consummate professional composer who wrote music in most genres. His symphonies, concertos and major choral works (for me) express a depth of inspiration that show him to be a truly great composer.

Not only was he inspired, he was also highly technically gifted. Vaughan Williams once said that you could not remove a single instrument from his orchestral writing without losing something vital. This craftsmanship was put to good effect in everything that he wrote, even in his 'lighter' works, like The Starlight Express.

The Starlight Express was a play based on a children's novel by Algernon Blackwood called "A Prisoner in Fairyland". Elgar was commissioned to write the music in November 1915 and one month later, he completed the score for performance - quite an achievement! Furthermore, you don't get the impression that it has been written in a hurry although it must be admitted that he did reuse material that he had used in the past.

The play was not a great success and it closed a month later. The music, however, lives on. Elgar certainly did not let it go to waste and he reused the material in vocal and instrumental form.

I have certainly enjoyed getting to know this work. It has a magical quality about it and is extraordinarily easy on the ear. Vernon Handley was of course a fantastic Elgarian and I can't imagine a better guide through this work. He is aided by two wonderful singers. Derek Hammond Stroud was brilliant character singer who, although a baritone, had a fantastically wide vocal range. He brings wit and sparkle to some rather twee lyrics. Valerie Masterson sings with gorgeous creamy tone - I love her songs on this recording.

Highly recommended.
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