The good life, with Edward Elgar

We imagine what would have happened if the famous English composer Edward Elgar had decided to write a self-help book.

If the famous English composer Edward Elgar had decided to take a back-seat in the music world, we think he could’ve written a very popular self-help book.

That is, of course, if he could find time between all his other hobbies…

“Hello, old chaps! Elgar here. I’m here to share with you some of my favourite ways to practice non-musical mindfulness. Take inspiration from my list to channel your inner country gentleman and you too could live a life as relaxing as mine. Tally ho!

1 Some of my most carefree times were shared with old Mr Phoebus. And “who is Mr Phoebus?”, I hear you cry. Why, my beloved Royal Sunbeam bicycle, of course! Nothing beats a good old-fashioned cycle around the country lanes in Great Malvern.

2 Fore! Oh, one cannot beat a spot of golf on a sunny summer’s day. The fresh air; the ease of the game; the loud jackets! And if it so happens that one’s social life is elevated by playing this highly respectable sport then all the more reason to play I say!

3 My dear wife Alice was not what you’d call a ‘dog person’ but I maintain they are man’s best friend. My group of pooches – Meg the Aberdeen terrier, Marco the Spaniel and Mina the Cairn – became some of my closest companions after Alice died. You can bet my canine comrades were treated to the finest dining of cakes and treats and, of course, were given lots of walkies!

4 If there’s anything I love more than writing a piece of music, then it’s writing a piece of music that’s shrouded in a mystery that I’ll never fully reveal! Of course, my Enigma variations are just one example of how I liked to challenge my audience with hidden puzzles, but I’ve always been fond of some harmless word-play. Even my own daughter, Carice, didn’t escape my tomfoolery – I derived her name from my wife’s first names; ‘Caroline’ and ‘Alice’. Oh, the japes I had!

5 Eureka! Move over, Einstein – I’m the new scientist in this town. I created my very own chemistry laboratory in the basement of my home and by Jove did I discover a chemical romance! If I hadn’t been so tremendously talented at writing music, my homemade soap or phosphoric concoctions could’ve made me famous and awfully rich. Perhaps not one of your more ‘traditional’ forms of mindfulness but it is jolly good fun.”

After all that, our minds are feeling pretty well rested. Thanks, Elgar!

Anna Bennett, Marketing and Press Officer