The Romantic Cello | Brilliant Classics 94934BR

The Romantic Cello


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Label: Brilliant Classics

Cat No: 94934BR

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 5

Release Date: 26th January 2015



This invaluable survey of that most Romantic of instruments includes both the classic concertos of the era, by DvořŠk and Saint‐SaŽns, as well as a generous selection of encores and showpieces, performed by a variety of cellists from this and earlier generations - including Zara Nelsova, in whose classic interpretation of the DvořŠk one may readily hear the admiration evinced by the composer's friend Brahms who, on hearing the work, remarked that he would have composed a concerto for the instrument himself had he realised the possibilities inherent in a combination that may present certain problems of balance, pitting the mellow voice of the solo instrument against a full orchestra.

Brahms, of course, can be considered to have made good his omission with the late flowering of the Double Concerto. His expansive E minor Sonata is here, alongside the deft turns of Mendelssohn's first sonata (in a performance by Luca Fiorentini on a rare Strad cello), as well as more lyrical sonatas by Chopin and Rachmaninov, treasured by cellists for their juicy melodies and the opportunity to engage with the idioms of composers who largely wrote for the piano.

The last disc opens with perhaps the most famous of all cello encores, The Swan from Saint‐SaŽns's Carnival of the Animals, which seems to capture perfectly the potential both for melancholy and for imitation of the human voice which places the cello alone among the string family.

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