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CHANSON DE MATIN,op15 No. 2
Elgar�s pedigree as a musician is a highly individual compound of influences as various as Schumann, Wagner, Gounod, Saint-Saens, Franck, Liszt, and Brahms. The �Englishness� ascribed to him is hard to define, but his music is often described by those who know and love it with the use of the adjective �Elgarian�. It was Beethoven however who awoke in Elgar�s mind the realization of the power of music as he told the eminent English music scholar, critic, and author Percy Scholes:
� One day in my childhood I happened to get hold of a copy of Beethoven�s First Symphony. I turned over the pages. The 1st movement made no particular impression; the 2nd I already knew as an organ voluntary. But the 3rd movement, the Scherzo! It was a revelation! Those rapid modulations � from C major to G major and D major and G major again and then suddenly into the flat keys, E flat major and C minor and A flat major, and D flat major! I had never seen anything like that. How romantic it all felt! I think it was this startling experience that first inspired me with a real passion for music.�
The root of Elgar�s work is his gift for melody while his harmonic structures are richly diverse, sometimes chromatic at others touchingly diatonic; his orchestration is brilliant and colourful with particularly impressive use of string textures.