Introduction and Allegro for Strings
Edward Elgar

291

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Elgar's soaring string classic drops 46 places since last year, to the lowest place in the chart in its history

Composed in 1905 for an all-Elgar performance by the newly formed London Symphony Orchestra, this is a wonderful example of Elgar's characteristically descriptive string writing. It was written after the Enigma Variations, after Sea Pictures, and after the Pomp and Circumstance Marches Nos. 1-3, but before his period of self-doubt following the composition of his Symphony No.2, a time of endless soul-searching about whether he was 'composed out'.

Inspiration for the piece came from a rather bracing walk along the cardigan shire coast, when he had heard a distant choir, and he had stashed it away for a possible 'Welsh Rhapsody' of some sort. In the end, the Welsh piece never came, so he borrowed the tune for this work, which features both a string quartet and a string orchestra.