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ken russell’s elgar

My favourite Ken Russell film by a long way is Elgar, his film for the BBC arts programme Monitor.

It must be nearly a decade since I picked up a dvd of the film at the Elgar Birthplace Museum at Lower Broadheath, near Worcester.

Elgar Birthplace Museum website

Shot in black and white in 1962, the film is truly wonderful and bears repeated viewings.

But the dvd also boasts loads of goodies such as a film commentary where Russell is as entertaining and informative as you would wish in conversation with the Elgar biographer Michael Kennedy.

Elgar also pops up in home movies taken at various Three Choirs Festivals, and he’s seen conducting ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ to celebrate the opening of EMI’s Abbey Road recording studios in 1931.

The Monitor film came at a time when Elgar’s music was going through an unfashionable period, so I think it’s fair to say that Ken Russell played a significant part in furthering its popularity.

Ken Russell\’s Elgar on YouTube

 

 

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