Elgar, O.M.: A Study of a Musician

By Percy M. Young | Go to book overview

CHAPTER V
"SPLENDID SAGA-ING"

. . . that lively heartfelt music . . . Sir George Grove to Alice Elgar, Oct. 24th, 1897

BY THE age of thirty-four or -five the model composer has successfully emerged from his "first period" and is, beyond doubt, well established. Elgar was no model composer. He was, however, a composer. But in 1891 there were very few to believe this. The man from the west had failed in his frontal attack on the metropolis and began, with some bitterness and much disappointment, to plan a strategic withdrawal to a safe defensive position. At the end of January he engaged in a last minute tour of the publishing houses--Schotts, Metzlers and Beares--before going down to Birmingham for Stockley's concert at Birmingham on February 5. Stockley put Froissart into his programme and Chivalry's uplifted lance struck a response from the Midlanders. "E. called and applauded on to platform. A. very proud." In London prospective tenants were being shown round 51 Avonmore Road, and in April a House to Let notice was put up. In the following month the Elgars were house-hunting in Malvern, where Edward had been visiting regularly to extend his teaching connection.

On June 20 they entered into possession of Forli, their Malvern home for the next few years. Throughout this year anxiety and the wear and tear caused by much travelling brought Edward into a debilitated state of health. The record, in the diaries, of minor and major bouts of ill-health is an index to the nervous condition of an excessively sensitive individual. He had not been well in April. On August 26 he was ill enough for Alice to send for the doctor. Four days later "quinsy" was pencilled in the

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Elgar, O.M.: A Study of a Musician
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Contents 9
  • Illustrations 11
  • Preface 13
  • Part One 17
  • Chapter I - Greenings and Elgars 19
  • Chapter II - Edward 30
  • Chapter III - "Passed with Honours" 39
  • Chapter IV Mr. Elgar 51
  • Chapter V - "Splendid Saga-Ing" 66
  • Chapter VI - Dr. Elgar 78
  • Chapter VII - Sir Edward 96
  • Chapter VIII - The Professor 124
  • Chapter IX - Order of Merit 150
  • Chapter X - "The Spirit-Stirring Drum" 168
  • Chapter XI - ". . . and All Remote Peace" 189
  • Chapter XII - Master of the King's Musick 205
  • Chapter XIII - Three Score and Ten 225
  • Chapter XIV - Unfinished Symphony 239
  • Chapter XV - The Man Himself 248
  • Part Two 261
  • Chapter XVI - In Search of a Style 263
  • Chapter XVII - Music for Orchestra 273
  • Chapter XVIII - Music for Voices 294
  • Chapter XIX - Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam 307
  • Chapter XX - The Symphonic Composer 326
  • Chapter XXI - Chamber Music 345
  • Chapter XXII - Incidental Music 354
  • Chapter XXIII - Unfinished Opera 360
  • Chapter XXIV - Epilogue 376
  • Musical Examples 383
  • Appendix - Inscriptions by Elgar in G. R. Sinclair's "Visitors' Book" 398
  • Index of Works 402
  • Bibliography 426
  • Sources & Acknowledgments 429
  • General Index 431
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