The Philadelphia Orchestra In Concert On WRTI: Music by Britten, Elgar, and Daugherty

Aug 23, 2020

Join us on Sunday, August 23rd at 1 PM on WRTI 90.1 and Monday, August 24th at at 7 PM on WRTI HD-2 to hear the British conductor Edward Gardner lead The Philadelphians in an impressive debut concert from last February. The program represents the heart of his repertory—Benjamin Britten’s Sinfonia da Requiem and Elgar’s Enigma Variations.

You'll also hear the extraordinary organist Paul Jacobs perform a work by the contemporary American composer Michael Daugherty. Once Upon a Castle is a lush orchestral showpiece inspired by the composer’s visits to Big Sur on the Pacific coast, and hearing the theater organ in William Randolph Hearst’s spectacular San Simeon mansion.

This was the first-ever Philadelphia Orchestra performance of this cinematic work.

Britten’s Sinfonia da Requiem, a powerful anti-war piece, written in America in 1939, Daugherty’s spectacular explosion of panoramic orchestral color, and the flying hands and feet of organist Paul Jacobs, Once Upon a Castle, and the 42-year-old Edward Elgar’s masterpiece that launched him to international fame, the Enigma Variations - what a program!

During intermission, WRTI’s Bliss Michelson chats backstage with organist Paul Jacobs and guest conductor Edward Gardner, who is chief conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic in Norway, and the principal conductor-designate of the London Philharmonic Orchestra.


Britten: Sinfonia da Requiem, Op. 20

Daugherty: Once Upon a Castle, symphonie concertante for organ and orchestra

I. The Winding Road to San Simeon

II. Neptune Pool

III. Rosebud

IV. Xanadu

Paul Jacobs, organ


Elgar: Variations on an Original Theme, Op. 36 (“Enigma”)

Gregg Whiteside is producer and host of  The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcasts, every Sunday at 1 PM on WRTI 90.1, streaming online at, and on our mobile app! Listen again on Mondays at 7 PM on WRTI HD-2.