Elgar’s Symphony No. 1 has a unique power to move us in passage after passage. In the end, all we can say is that the composer has created something uncommonly beautiful. So too have conductor Daniel Barenboim and his musicians in this recording.
Although I have heard Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra give stunning performances over the years, too often they seem to be on automatic pilot. Let’s hope they can summon up some energy and inspiration for Friday’s Roy Thomson Hall performance.