Sumptuous strains ripple round his white wand
Invoking spellbinding expositions —
Resplendent, enigmatic, yet profound.
Marvelous music flows at his command,
Awakened by dexterous incantations,
Renewing black notes into lush-hued sound.
Kapellmeister ne plus ultra indeed,
Enthralling the Hallé with Elgar’s songs,
Liberating art from stale convention,
Daring to venture where others recede,
Endeavoring to right a slew of wrongs,
Reproaching all errant intonation.
Charting his course through a vast sonic sea,
He rides the tides conducting destiny.
There seems to have been no specific ‘enigma’ in mind at the outset: Elgar’s first playing of the music was hardly more than a running over the keys to aid relaxation. It was Alice Elgar’s interruption, apparently, that called him to attention and helped to identify the phrases which were to become the ‘Enigma’ theme. This suggests it is unlikely that the theme should conceal some counterpoint or cipher needed to solve the ‘Enigma’.
The Enigma I will not explain – it’s ‘dark saying’ must be left unguessed, and I warn you that the connexion between the Variations and the Theme is often of the slightest texture; further, through and over the whole set another and larger theme ‘goes’, but is not played . . . So the principal Theme never appears, even as in some later dramas – e.g., Maeterlinck’s ‘L’Intruse’ and ‘Les sept Princesses’ – the chief character is never on the stage.
Elgar’s “Organo” Label Trilingual Acrostic Cipher
In April 1921 he was playing Bach fugues—not only from The Well-Tempered Clavier but the big organ fugues he had studied forty years earlier at St. George’s Church: ‘Now that my poor wife has gone I can’t be original, and so I depend on people like Johann Sebastian for a source of inspiration. He decided to orchestrate the C minor organ fugue, as he wrote to Ivor Atkins, ‘. . . in modern way—largest orchestra . . . So many arrgts have been made of Bach on the “pretty’ scale” & I wanted to shew how gorgeous & great & brilliant he would have made himself sound if he had our means.’ Yet the sound of the organ was in his mind as well. He wrote to Ernest Newman: ‘You will see that I have kept it quite solid (diapasony) at first;—later you hear the sesquialteras & other trimming stops reverberating & the resultant vibrating shimmering sort of organ sound—I think.’ By April 25 the arrangement was finished. In May he copied it out and sent it to Novellos, who agreed to pay Edward a hundred guineas for the copyright.
. . . his knowledge of the Bible and the Apocrypha was profound. He certainly consulted his friends also, both in his own Roman Catholic church and in the Anglican . . .
The drama now moves to Golgotha, where we see only the last episode of all, the death of Jesus. Believing that the cry of “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” could not be fittingly given to any human voice, Elgar has entrusted it to the muted strings alone.
Elgar’s “Organo” Label Ciphers
Elgar’s “Organo” Label Character Sums Ciphers
Elgar’s “Organo” Label Anagram Ciphers
Tell how King Olaf bore the Cross,
To the folk at Nidaros,
Norland, Iceland, lands and seas
Winning to the God of peace.
Alternate “Organo” Label Anagram Ciphers