On demand: At Home Concert Club I: England, my England

Welcome to the first At Home Concert Club, a regular event in which like-minded music fans can get together online and enjoy the fantastic concerts in our on demand archive. Each event will be curated around a central theme or genre. Join us to watch the concerts, discuss the performances and works and to connect with other classical music lovers!

In the first instalment of the At Home Concert Club, Mark Pullinger curates a programme of English music. See below for the programme, videos and related articles.

Malvern Hills: Elgar's inspiration © Wiki Commons

At the opening weekend of BBC Proms, Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin demonstrated how wonderfully non-British orchestras can play Elgar. English music is all too rarely programmed outside the UK – and then only a handful of works or composers, such as Elgar’s Cello Concerto – which prompted me to curate a programme of English works performed by Norwegian, German and Swedish orchestras in our At Home archive.

The four works I’ve chosen are very different in feel. Elgar’s overture Cockaigne is subtitled "In London Town" and is an affectionate portrait of the capital city at the turn of the 20th century. The Enigma Variations offer portraits of a very different kind – a simple theme is treated to variations each in the style of Elgar’s friends. Delius’ The Walk to the Paradise Garden is an orchestral interlude of great pastoral beauty taken from his opera A Village Romeo and Juliet. Much darker is the Serenade for tenor, horn and strings, Benjamin Britten’s song cycle based on six poems on the subject of night, which slips into something quite eerie and sinister.

- Mark Pullinger







Bachtrack internalRecorded at Konserthuset Stockholm: Stora Salen, Stockholm, Sweden
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