Elgar – Salut d’Amour

FP520 Edward Elgar Salut d’Amour Flute, Piano & Guitar Grade 4-5 3′ 30″

Considering Edward Elgar (1857 – 1934) had fairly humble origins, was raised as a Catholic, taught himself to write music (in a notably European style) and considered himself an outsider, it is quite an achievement now to be celebrated as the quintessentially “English” composer. Recognition was won slowly, however, and Elgar sometimes became dispirited.

After the age of forty, true national and international acclaim was eventually achieved with Enigma Variations, his most popular work. Other pieces that reaffirm Elgar’s position at the forefront of English music are the Dream of Gerontius, Pomp and Circumstance Marches, from which comes the music for Land of Hope and Glory and the cello and violin Concertos.

Elgar was much assisted in his career, both musically and socially, by his wife Caroline Alice. To mark their engagement, Elgar dedicated to her a violin and piano piece composed in 1888 entitled Liebesgruss, his fiancée having some fluency in German. The publisher, Schott, soon introduced the now familiar French title Salut d’Amour, whereupon sales immediately increased.

In this FlutePlay arrangement, the piano is close to the original, though the guitar supports the melody for the first stanza with no keyboard. Ideally, the guitar should be amplified; the type of instrument is at the performer’s discretion. The flute needs to respect the articulatory and dynamic details to achieve the correct phrasing, which will be generally enhanced by a degree of expressive rubato from all players.

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