London Branch



Branch Contact
Ruth Hellen
30 King James Avenue

Telephone: 01707 876079








The London Branch of The Elgar Society has over 300 members spread around the UK and abroad, with some living as far afield as Australia. Visitors and prospective new members are very welcome to attend meetings; there is no charge for admission and refreshments are available during intervals. The programme of regular illustrated talks is supplemented by occasional concerts and visits.

Unless otherwise indicated, London Branch meetings are held at 

Queen’s College,  43-49 Harley Street, London W1G 8BT.        

The nearest Underground station is Oxford Circus. There is a public car park nearby and street parking is possible after 6.30 p.m. Please remember that the area is within the congestion charge and ULE zone.

Programme for 2019 – 2020

Monday 7 October 2019, 7.30 p.m.

Queen’s College, 43-49 Harley Street, London W1G 8BT

Wood Magic at Brinkwells: Elgar’s chamber music : Adrian Brown

Adrian Brown will reflect on the works produced mainly at Brinkwells at the culmination of the First World War and thereafter. He will put forward a case that the works are completely linked, structurally, tonally, emotionally and personally; that for once Elgar did not express his grief and mood in setting a text but chose to ‘compose’ his loss of Charles Mott, Helen Weaver’s son Kenneth Munro and others in conventional forms.  Music being, as Schumann said, ‘too precise for words’.

Adrian Brown has conducted many leading British and overseas orchestras, including the recently formed Elgar Sinfonia of London. He is also a great proponent of contemporary music, having several first performances to his credit, and works a great deal with young musicians.

Monday 4 November 2019, 7.30 p.m.

St James the Less Centre, Thorndike Street, Pimlico SW1V 2PS

Orchestras, organs and conductors : David Bell

For fifteen years, David Bell was organist to conductor Herbert von Karajan and, under his direction, performed on a regular basis with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.  Other conductors he has played under include Sir Georg Solti, Klaus Tennstedt, Kurt Masur, Vernon Handley, Sir Adrian Boult, Franz Welser Most, Georges Prêtre and Mstislav Rostropovich.    His numerous recital locations have included five solo recitals at St. Paul’s, and also two recitals at Liverpool Anglican Cathedral. He appears as organist on over fifty recordings, several of which feature works of Elgar, and is the only classical organist in the UK to have been awarded two Gold Discs for high record sales.  Alongside his activities as organist, David was also a Departmental Manager at EMI’s Abbey Road Studios, and worked on many recordings.

 Monday 2 December 2019, 7.30 p.m.

Queen’s College, 43-49 Harley Street, London W1G 8BT

An evening with Roderick Williams

Roderick Williams will speak about his career as a singer and composer.  He performs a wide repertoire, from baroque to contemporary music, in the opera house, on the concert platform and in recital. He won the Singer of the Year Award in the 2016 Royal Philharmonic Society Awards and was awarded the OBE for services to music in June 2017. His numerous recordings include Vaughan Williams, Berkeley and Britten operas for Chandos and an extensive repertoire of English song with Iain Burnside for Naxos.  His Elgar performances and recordings include The Starlight Express, Sea Pictures, The Dream of Gerontius and a number of songs.

Monday 3 February 2020, 7.30 p.m. 

Queen’s College Prep School, 61 Portland Place, London W1B 1QP

“Music, when soft voices die, vibrates in the memory” (Shelley) : Andrew Dalton

The second half of Elgar’s life coincided with the rapid development of the gramophone, and Elgar himself played a significant part in this process. This talk will examine the careers and recorded legacy of some of the musicians, both singers and instrumentalists, who were known and admired by Elgar and closely associated with his music.

Andrew Dalton is a member of London Branch and worked for nearly 50 years in the music industry before retiring last year.

Monday 2 March 2020, 7.30 p.m.

Queen’s College Prep School, 61 Portland Place, London W1B 1QP

Edward Elgar and Ivor Atkins – the Worcester connection : Adrian Lucas

Adrian Lucas, former organist of Worcester Cathedral, looks at the lives of two great musical minds who worked together and inspired and encouraged each other, drawing personal connections and parallels along the way..

Monday 20 April 2020, 7.30 p.m.   


Queen’s College, 43-49 Harley Street, London W1G 8BT

When Alice met Edward

Stephen Harrow, Kevin Mitchell, Lyn & Peter Nixon

Is 6 October 1886 perhaps the most significant date in the English musical renaissance?  A laconic entry in Elgar’s appointments diary records his meeting with a new pupil: ‘Miss Roberts. 1st lesson…’. A presentation by the ‘Starlight Rep’  will mark the centenary of the death of Lady Elgar (7 April 1920) by exploring the importance to Elgar’s career of Alice – poet, novelist, linguist, enigma – through her words and his music, with linking imagery..

Monday 11 May 2020,  2.00 – 5.00 p.m.     


Royal Academy of Music, Marylebone Road, London, WC1N 1AZ  

    Celebrating Elgar’s cello concerto      

The 2020 Richards Memorial Event will be an afternoon spent exploring Elgar’s cello concerto, first performed in October 1919. Robert Cohen, with colleagues and students from the RAM, will discuss and illustrate the music, its influence and its teaching.

This will also form part of the RAM’s programme of public events.  Further details will be available in due course..

Monday 8 June 2020, 7.30 p.m.


 St. George’s Church, Hanover Square, W1S 1FX

Branch AGM; Wind quintet music : Beckenham Concert Band


The recital, at 8.00 p.m., will be preceded at 7.30 p.m. by the Branch AGM.  

Visitors are welcome to attend this free recital.

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