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Brahms: Symphony No. 1; Elgar: Enigma Variations / Boult

Audio Samples

  1. Brahms — Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68: I. Un poco sostenuto - Allegro
  2. Brahms — Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68: II. Andante sostenuto $0.99 on iTunes
  3. Brahms — Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68: III. Un poco allegretto e grazioso $0.99 on iTunes
  4. Brahms — Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68: IV. Adagio - Piu andante - Allegro non troppo ma con brio
  5. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Introduction - $0.99 on iTunes
  6. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 2: H. D. S-P. (Hew David Steuart-Powell) - $0.99 on iTunes
  7. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 3: R. B. T. (Richard Baxter Townshend) - $0.99 on iTunes
  8. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 4: W. M. B. (William Meath Baker) - $0.99 on iTunes
  9. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 5: R. P. A. (Richard Penrose Arnold) - $0.99 on iTunes
  10. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 6: Ysobel (Isabel Fitton) - $0.99 on iTunes
  11. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 7: Troyte (Troyte Griffith) - $0.99 on iTunes
  12. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 8: W. N. (Winifred Norbury) - $0.99 on iTunes
  13. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 9: Nimrod (A. J. Jaeger) - $0.99 on iTunes
  14. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 10: Intermezzo: Dorabella (Dora Penny) - $0.99 on iTunes
  15. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 11: G. R. S. (George Robertson Sinclair) - $0.99 on iTunes
  16. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 12: B. G. N. (Basil G. Nevinson) - $0.99 on iTunes
  17. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 13: Romanza: *** (Lady Mary Lygon) - $0.99 on iTunes
  18. Brahms — Variations On an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma": Variation 14: Finale: E. D. U. (The Composer) $0.99 on iTunes
  19. Brahms — John Douglas Todd Interviews Sir Adrian Boult (Extract from 85th Birthday Broadcast) $0.99 on iTunes

Album Summary

>Brahms, Johannes : Symphony no 1 in C minor, Op. 68
>Elgar, Edward : Enigma Variations
>Word, Spoken : John Douglas Todd interviews Sir Adrian Boult
Performer Conductor Ensemble Composers

Notes & Reviews:

Sir Adrian Boult (1889 - 1983), one of the great British conductors of the 20th century, studied under the legendary Arthur Nikisch. This fiery 1976 Prom stereo broadcast of Brahms 1 is the only authorized live account available. Elgar's Enigma Variations was sourced from the Royal Albert Hall Centenary Concert (1971) and features the alternative organ part played by George Thalben-Ball. This CD is completed by an interview on the art of interpretation Boult gave on his 85th birthday.

"This Brahms 1 is superbly paced: hard-driven yet flexible, virile yet richly expressive. The opening’s 6/8 — relentless, tragic — has, rightly, the same pulse as the ensuing allegro (where Boult, unusually, observes the repeat). In Elgar, Boult could sometimes misjudge tempo, but not here. From the theme onwards (exquisitely judged), his touch is sure and masterly." -The Sunday Times

Fanfare
No admirer of this conductor or student of the conductor's art will want to be without this marvelous release. The sound is good, yielding little to the cavernous space of Royal Albert Hall.

MusicWeb International
This Brahms symphony performance, given at the Proms in 1976, finds Boult in very fine form and he gets an excellent performance from the BBC orchestra. What impressed me throughout was the sheer vitality of Boult's interpretation. These are fine, wise performances, which act as welcome supplements to Sir Adrian's studio versions of these works. Even if you have those recordings this CD is well worth your attention for the frisson of a live occasion is definitely present. The recordings have come up pretty well and there's a characteristically good note by Boult's biographer, Michael Kennedy.

American Record Guide
The Elgar Enigma is a different story altogether. It is much more concise and tightly organized than the soggy Brahms. The tempos vary obviously from one episode to another, but are appropriate in all events. The recorded sound is brighter and more detailed than in the Brahms. Finally, the sound is enhanced by the pedal notes of the organ - played by G Thalben Ball - which contribute mightily to a thunderous conclusion, particularly if you employ a good subwoofer.

Gramophone
The Allegro con grazia second movement is both swift and uncommonly delicate, and everywhere you sense an alert rostrum presence approaching the music afresh. Of the many instrumentaliststurned-conductors who have arrived on the scene in recent years, I'd say that Bashmet has to be among the most original. I look forward to hearing more rostrum work from him, much more.

Classic FM Magazine
These performances would surpass all superlatives under any circumstance, but what makes them especially incredible is that, despite Boult being in his nineties, they sound like the interpretations of a young man...Many recordings have been released since these first appeared, and yet one would be hard-pushed to name any that can truly top them.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Royal Albert Hall, London.



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Works Details

>Brahms, Johannes : Symphony no 1 in C minor, Op. 68
  • Conductor: Adrian Boult
  • Ensemble: BBC Symphony Orchestra
  • Running Time: 44 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1855-1876

>Elgar, Edward : Enigma Variations
  • Performer: George Thalben-Ball (Organ)
  • Conductor: Adrian Boult
  • Ensemble: BBC Symphony Orchestra
  • Running Time: 27 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1898-1899

>Word, Spoken : John Douglas Todd interviews Sir Adrian Boult
  • Running Time: 3 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic