Elgar Enigma Variations - the "enigma" is BACH

n.b. German musical notation B-A-C-H corresponds to the notes B-A-C-B

The mosaic fits so perfectly that surely there can be no argument;
and the Auld Lang Syners and Prague-symphony-ers
need to be silenced once and for all.

Kenneth Hunt, 31 August 1994, Melbourne, Australia.

What higher "chief" could there be than Bach?

There is a wonderful moment at the end of one of the later variations - XII (B.G.N.) Andante - when a solo cello poignantly states the "B-A-C-" but the "H" is
swallowed up rather rudely by the clarinet starting the next movement - XIII Romanza, Moderato. (By the way, Kenneth Hunt was a clarinetist!)

There are lots of other examples, so when next you listen to the whole piece you will indeed hear B-A-C-H throughout, even though it is never played ...
His great nephew and composer Benjamin Wallfisch @benwallfisch says:
"No doubt at all - especially as Bach himself was the grand master of implied counterpoint (those incredible 4 part fugues in the solo violin Sonatas where you sometimes feel but don't hear the countersubjects, and Elgar of course being a violin virtuoso himself!"
May 2013
Kenneth Hunt died 21 August 2002. He was passionate about riddles such as these. The ideas contained above were not his own but arose in communications he had with Geoffrey Bush and Ian Parrott.

KHH Obituary

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