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Enigma Variations / Pomp & Circumstance
Elgar, Previn, Rpo
Enigma Variations / Pomp & Circumstance
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (20) - Disc #1

André Previn elicits beautiful playing from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in his account of the Enigma Variations, and projects a darker, more subdued view of the score than does Sir Adrian Boult. This is a reading of...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Elgar, Previn, Rpo
Title: Enigma Variations / Pomp & Circumstance
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Polygram Records
Release Date: 10/25/1990
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
Styles: Marches, Historical Periods, Modern, 20th, & 21st Century
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 028941681324

Synopsis

Amazon.com
André Previn elicits beautiful playing from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in his account of the Enigma Variations, and projects a darker, more subdued view of the score than does Sir Adrian Boult. This is a reading of substantial cumulative power, convincing through and through, and distinguished by the velvety sound of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Previn's treatment of the marches, while not exactly fiery, is genial and warm. Rhythms are nicely sprung, and the readings have a relaxed, almost playful quality about them, although they take on plenty of gravity where appropriate. The digital sound is excellent and of a wide range. --Ted Libbey

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CD Reviews

Surprised to discover the best Enigma is out-of-print
Martin Selbrede | The Woodlands, Texas | 01/09/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I grew up on Toscanini's Enigma Variations, and have enjoyed the interpretations by Slatkin, Barbirolli, Boult, and the new LSO Live release with Sir Colin Davis. (We'll leave Bernstein's BBC Phil fiasco out of the discussion.) I've heard others as well, but encountered Ted Libbey's recommendation for this CD in his informative NPR book and thought I'd give it a whirl.

Mind you, I had just visited an audiophile store with the LSO-Davis CD to test out the top-line system in the demo room, telling the proprietor that it was probably the best Enigma I'd encountered. Two days later, THIS disc arrives in the mail, and I end up eating my words. And, contra Libbey, I think he placed his two recommendations in the wrong order (he puts Boult before Previn). I'd take Previn before any other interpretation at this point. Interpretation-wise, sonically, emotionally, in respect to detail -- this version has it all. And it's inexplicably out of print, while Bernstein's version (which made Norman Lebrecht's list of the 20 Worst Recordings Of All Time) remains in print in three different editions! Is there not a God?

It's time Philips resurrected this singular achievement in Elgar recording. By the way, I had planned to go to bed after hearing the Enigma, but let the first Pomp & Circumstance march start. Transfixed by how Previn had breathed new, vivid life into it, I ended up listening through all five marches. For once someone didn't just phone it in.

I can't recommend this disc highly enough -- and I had just purchased the Barbirolli (in the Elgar Edition box set) and the Davis version two weeks before I bought this one, thinking I really didn't need another Enigma but let's put Libbey's recommendation to the test.

On this one, you can trust Libbey."