Four Elgar World Premieres

A recording made with unqualified love and great care.

Composer: Elgar
Repertoire: Songs and Piano Music
Artists: The Works/Owen Norris
Rating: 4/5

Genre: Orchestral
Label: Avie AV 2129

Four Elgar world premieres, including the first recording of his unpublished final song XTC, are not the least of the charms offered here by David Owen Norris and his trusty companions who form The Works. Other attractions include the distinctive parlour-piano voice of Elgar’s 1844 Broadwood instrument, Owen Norris’s visionary musical leadership and fearless, convention-defying vocal performances. The overriding impression is of a recording made with unqualified love and great care to connect with a  lost age. English soprano Amanda Pitt’s blowsy delivery is not always easy on the ear, but one imagines Elgar would have approved. He’d certainly appreciate the panache of this 150th birthday tribute.