(Left) Kathryn Rudge. Photo © Sussie Ahlburg (Right) Elīna Garanča. Photo supplied

Diving into Elgar's Seascape

Dame Janet Baker’s famous 1965 recording of Elgar’s Sea Picturesis the touchstone by which others are judged. Michael Quinntalks to two of today’s brightest mezzo-sopranos, Kathryn Rudge and Elīna Garanča, about their very different readings of the under-appreciated but beautiful, mysterious song cycle.

Composed and forever confined between two defining masterpieces, Edward Elgar’s Sea Pictureshas long been something of a Cinderella figure in the composer’s otherwise revered output. And, for that matter, in the story of the British art song.

A cycle of five songs that share images of the sea,...