So, after a day's break, we're back to the A-Z Challenge, letter "E," and who better to highlight than good old Sir Edward Elgar and one of my favourite sections from his Dream of Gerontius; the Proficiscere Anima, sung here by Robert Lloyd. I don't suppose I'll ever get a chance to take part in Gerontius, now that I'm no longer in a regular choir. Never mind, that doesn't stop me listening and enjoying other peoples' performances. I've been a devotee of Elgar's works ever since encountering them at school, and in fact, Mstr GP would have been born to the strains of one of his Pomp and Circumstance marches, if Mr GP hadn't wrestled the headphones away from me first.
It's easy perhaps - nowadays, for some to be slightly dismissive or scornful of some of his works as being jingoistic or even rather simplistic, 'easy,' listening for the less 'sophisticated. Take Victoria Wood's famous 'Continuity announcer,' for example: "Enigma Variations - nothing we can't hum there!" If you've only encountered him in bite-sized chunks in 'Favourite Hits,' type contexts, I guess you might be left with that impression. [Yes, yes, I do realise I've posted a 'bite-sized' here, but you get the picture?!] Like all good things, it's worth persevering for the long haul, I promise you.