East Anglian Branch

East Anglia


Branch Contact

Robin Self
27 Coucy Close
IP13 9AX

Telephone: 01728 621 577

Branch programme 2016–2017 — Location map — Previous seasons 

The East Anglian Branch of the Elgar Society meets on Saturday afternoons, seven or eight times per year, for illustrated talks by musicians, writers and Elgarian experts. There is no charge for admission, but donations are welcomed towards the running costs of the branch. Visitors and potential new members are always welcome; if you like the music of Elgar why not pay us a visit? Meetings are held in the Lecture Room at St Edmundsbury Cathedral in the centre of Bury St Edmunds, centrally located within East Anglia and with good transport links. From the main entrance on Angel Hill go down the steps, through the cloister and through the doorway on the right to find the staircase and lift up to the Lecture Room. Occasionally meetings are held instead in the Discovery Centre, adjacent to the Lecture Room at the top of the stairs.

St Edmundsbury Cathedral from the Abbey Gardens
St Edmundsbury Cathedral from the Abbey Gardens


To view or download an A4 PDF brochure (219KB) containing the 2016–2017 programme for the East Anglian Branch, please click on the thumbnail image:

East Anglian Branch brochure 2016-2017

Saturday 8 October 2016, 2.30 p.m.
Stephen Williams & friends
A three-fold cord: Edward Elgar, Ivor Atkins & the earliest origins of Three Choirs’ Music Meetings
For three centuries the cathedral choirs of Gloucester, Hereford and Worcester have met each summer to make music together, now joined by musicians and audiences from much further afield.? Revd Stephen Williams is a historian of the Three Choirs Festival.? With the help of his colleagues he explores its origins, its importance to Elgar throughout his life and, in particular, the role of Sir Ivor Atkins, Elgar’s close friend and Worcester Cathedral organist for more than fifty years.?
Saturday 5 November 2016, 2.30 p.m.
Andrew Keener
Sir Malcolm Sargent: Elitist with the common touch
The prolific record producer, Andrew Keener, introduces the life and work of Sir Malcolm Sargent (1895–1967), the conductor who did so much for music in Britain, and British music in particular, in the first half of the twentieth century. A great champion of Elgar, he also gave the first performances of many of the works of his younger colleagues.?
Saturday 4 February 2017, 2.30 p.m.
Christopher Wiltshire
Edward Elgar from more of us that knew him: Recorded accounts by those who met and worked with Elgar
Preceded by the branch A.G.M. at 2.00
By popular demand after his first appearance last season, Christopher Wiltshire introduces a second instalment of recordings of the reminiscences — some amusing, others moving — of those who knew Elgar in person. Their voices provide a vital, vivid link with the composer’s own time.?
Saturday 4 March 2017, 2.30 p.m.
Geoffrey Scargill
Elgar and Germany
German musicians were among Elgar’s most important colleagues, he travelled extensively in Germany and its music was an important influence upon him. Geoffrey Scargill, the outgoing chairman of the North-West branch of the Elgar Society, shares Elgar’s enthusiasm and has been at the forefront of the Society’s efforts to raise his profile in Germany once more.?
Saturday 8 April 2017, 2.30 p.m.
Rachel Sokoloswki (violin) and Christopher Moore (piano)
Elgar: Violin Sonata in E minor, followed by complete performance in the cathedral
Christopher Moore, who spoke about Elgar’s organ music and performed Elgar’s organ sonata for the branch in 2013, returns to talk on the subject of Elgar’s haunting and deeply personal wartime violin sonata. Afterwards he and the violinist Rachel Sokolowski will give a complete performance of the work in St Edmundsbury Cathedral.?
Saturday 13 May 2017, 2.30 p.m.
Kevin Mitchell & friends
Elgar: The Starlight Express
When Algernon Blackwood’s children’s story A Prisoner in Fairyland was adapted for the stage as The Starlight Express in 1915, Elgar was engaged to write incidental music. Charming and escapist, it countered the emerging horrors of war, and his early recording proved popular, not least at the Front. Kevin Mitchell, with colleagues from the London branch of the Elgar Society, discusses the recently revived work.?
Saturday 10 June 2017, 2.30 p.m.
Lewis Foreman
Discovering the British symphony
Lewis Foreman, indefatigable historian of English music of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, joins us to talk about British symphonies: some well known, others less so. Elgar wrote two, Bax seven and Vaughan Williams nine, but there have been more than a hundred more composed in this country since the 1880s, and the process of rediscovery continues.?
Saturday 8 July 2017, 2.30 p.m.
John Harcup
Elgar in Malvern: the composer on the road to fame
Of the great tune on the first movement of his cello concerto, Elgar said, ‘If ever you’re walking on the hills and you should hear this, don’t be frightened, it’s only me.’ The hills were the Malverns, and they, and the town below them, were where his heart lay. John Harcup, chairman of the West Midlands branch of the Elgar Society and Vice-President of the Malvern Civic Society, discusses Elgar’s time in Malvern and the works he composed there.?


Click on this small map of Bury St Edmunds, centred on St Edmundsbury Cathedral, to open the full-size map, suitable for printing, in a new window:

Thumbnail map of Bury St Edmunds
Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2013

Alternatively, click here to view a Google map showing the cathedral, station and car parks.


For details of the past activities of the branch since it was re-founded in 2011, plick on these thumbnail images to open PDF brochures for past seasons:

Elgar & Vaughan Williams Day flyer East Anglian Branch brochure 2015-2016 East Anglian Branch brochure 2014-2015 East Anglian Branch brochure 2013-2014 East Anglian Branch brochure 2012-2013 East Anglian Branch brochure 2011-2012

Other Branches

East Midlands  London  North American  North West  Scottish  Southern  South Western  West Midlands  Yorkshire & North East