Within the realm of instrumental music, the romantic solo concerto is the little brother of its big sister, the opera. It is a genre unmistakably more theatrical than the symphony or any type of chamber music. Its name implies spectacle, conflict, and strong contrasts. The world of opera is much the same: dying heroes speak their farewells in the language of belcanto, and emotions are magnified to such vast proportions that they cannot be misunderstood by anyone in the furthest reaches of the theatre, in the back rows of the balcony and the most remote galleries. At the same time, both the solo concerto and opera are more concrete and human than the abstracter genres. Magic is sometimes achieved in the greatest operas when the explicitly stated still allows the suggestion of an additional dimension. Measured by that criterion, Dvoiák ‘s cello concerto is a successful solo concerto. Ifind it intriguing and particularly sympathetic that the concerto’s most important extra dimensions are its warm humanity and unpretentious simplicity. The lyrical passages give us moments of visionary intensity, but above all they are characterised by great purity. The heroic moments are not aggressive, but rather sparkling, lively, and filled with vigor. Intimacy blossoms in the numerous pastoral and picturesque passages, and the festive scenes are enlived with the sound of the triangleDownload booklet
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