Written in 1900-1901, COCKAIGNE OVERTURE (IN LONDON TOWN) marked a returned confidence to Edward Elgar (1857-1934). The success of 1899's ENIGMA VARIATIONS was followed by an initial failure of THE DREAM OF GERONTIUS, causing Elgar to become dispirited. Upon receiving a commission by the Royal Philharmonic Society, Elgar's spirits returned, describing the musical portrait of Edwardian London as follows: "I call it 'Cockayne' and it is cheerful and Londony- stout and steaky... honest, healthy, humorous, and strong, but not vulgar..." The alluded to vulgarity likely refers to some of the early Cockayne history, which presents an imaginary medieval place where the peasants live in an extreme luxury and every physical comfort and pleasure is always immediately at hand. Premiered in the Queen's Hall, London at a Royal Philharmonic Society concert on June 20, 1901, conducted by the composer, the work was dedicated to his "many friends, the members of British orchestras." An immediate success, the music became one of Elgar's most popular works. Instrumentation: 2(2dPicc).2.2.2+Cbsn: 4.2+2Crnt.3.1: Timp.Perc(4-5): Org(opt): Str(9-8-7-6-5 in set).