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CHAN 5038
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CHAN 5038

Elgar: Symphony No. 2/ In the South

The Classical Shop
release date: August 2005

Originally recorded in 2004


BBC National Orchestra of Wales

Richard Hickox


Brangwyn Hall, Swansea


Brian Couzens


Ralph Couzens

Michael Common


Record Label


Orchestral & Concertos

Total Time - 77:27
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In the South (Alassio), Op. 50

  Concert Overture  
  Vivace - Nobilmente -  

Symphony No. 2, Op. 63

  in E flat major - in Es-Dur - en mi bémol majeur  
  Dedicated to the Memory of His late Majesty King Edward VII  
2 I Allegro vivace e nobilmente - 16:35
3 II Larghetto - Nobilmente e semplice - 15:28
4 III Rondo. Presto 8:14
5 IV Moderato e maestoso - 15:13
  Also available as SACD CHSA 5038
No Notes Found.
There’s no shortage of first-rate recordings of the majestic Second, but few have been as beautifully burnished as Richard Hickox’s account, captured with customary brilliance on this SACD
The Independent

From the irresistible sweep and splendour of In the South – Elgar’s exuberant tribute to Richard Strauss – to the wonderfully satisfying account of the Second Symphony’s finale, this disc has given me such pleasure that I am loath to find any fault with it. But the pacing of the Symphony’s famous opening seems to me simply too rushed – quicker than Elgar’s precise markings – for the densely intricate textures to register. The rest is a delight. Under Hickox’s direction, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales respond to the music with a freshness, panache, expressiveness and ‘joie de vivre’ that are captivating.
The Sunday Times

Even on conventional CD playback this is an unusually transparent recording, and the SACD layer further lightens and clarifies Elgar’s textures, a welcome bonus in this often heavily scored symphony. The performance itself is consistently impressive. At its heart is a grave, sensitive account of the slow movement, expertly charted by Richard Hickox from its mournful, trudging origins in the underbelly of the orchestra to the pained searingly nostalgic final climax.
BBC Music Magazine

Elgar’s Second Symphony blossoms in the hands of Richard Hickox and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Classic FM Magazine ‘Disc of the Month’

The singing of the London Symphony Chorus on the Chandos disc is first rate, as is the orchestral playing… Hickox’s singers carry the day.
Gramophone on CHAN 8875/ (The Apostles)

Richard Hickox’s studio recording certainly deserves a place in that select band. The Chandos sound is glorious and the orchestral playing first rate – on form the BBC National Orchestra of Wales is a match for any of the corporation’s other orchestras around the country – and Hickox’s performance has the sense of carefully moulded ebb and flow that the Second Symphony requires.
The Guardian

You couldn’t ask for more professional forces than these under Hickox and together they make a strong case for this oratorio as an admirable piece in its own right, as well as a fascinating forerunner of The Dream of Gerontius and The Apostles.
BBC Music Magazine on CHAN 9208 (The Light of Life)

Richard Hickox and his combined London Symphony forces are dab hands at this kind of fare and their performance has great bloom and spaciousness…
Gramophone ‘Classical Good CD Guide’on CHAN 9435 (The Black Knight)

M Dunphy