The direction "nobilmente" appears often in the scores of Edward Elgar. If you wanted to list the "noblest" of this British composer's works, you'd have to put his magnificent Second Symphony near the top. It is passionate, elegiac, lavish in themes and orchestration; it's absolutely one of the finest late-Romantic symphonies — and, since it's not by a German composer, not often performed. But you can hear it played by the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra this week, when Conductor Laureate Christopher Seaman makes his annual return to the podium. Seaman performs Elgar's music as well as we're ever apt to hear in these parts, so this reading of the Second Symphony will be a highlight of the season. Seaman's program also includes "Old and Lost Rivers," a short, pensive orchestral piece by American composer Tobias Picker, and music by another composer he conducts rather well, Beethoven. The delightful Second Piano Concerto, will feature soloist Andrew van Oeyen.
The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra will perform Thursday, October 13, 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, October 15, at 8 p.m., in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 60 Gibbs Street. $23-$99. 454-2100; rpo.org.