Think you know the accordion? You don’t until you’ve heard James Crabb. His breath-taking virtuosity simply redeﬁnes the instrument, and his performances are an awe-inspiring experience. One of the many composers to write for him was the late New Zealander Lyell Cresswell, who made a big splash at the BBC Proms in 1995 with Dragspil (Icelandic for ‘accordion’).
Elgar’s towering symphony is the antithesis of ‘Land of Hope and Glory’. It’s rich, deeply romantic music by a very emotional man. Sibelius described his mystical tone-poem as ‘something like an ancient Scandinavian ballad from the time of the Vikings’.