Публикация о конкурсе 14 конкурс им. Чайковского. Cello | Raymond Stults, June 23

  • Автор темы Мария Холкина
  • Дата начала

Мария Холкина

If there is one piece of music I’m certain always to associate with the 2011 Tchaikovsky Competition, it is Joseph Haydn’s Cello Concerto No. 1 in C major.

Cello competitors this year were given a choice between that concerto and the other one that Haydn’s other surviving cello concerto, No. 2in D major, as the work to be played in the second part of Round II. Ten of the 25 cellists originally selected to compete chose the latter. But rather surprisingly, considering the odds, not a single one of those opting for No. 2 was among eight who progressed beyond Round II’s first part when the cut was made on Tuesday. So now, over the space of two evenings, cello enthusiasts are being treated to eight successive performances of the Concerto No. 1.

What promised to be something of an ordeal began last night. I have to admit that I never before seriously listened to either Haydn concerto and had the impression neither was a work of much consequence. But hearing the first of the concertos played four times in a row by four very talented young cellists, each with a distinctive approach to the music, went far to change my mind. It was not just the abundance of good tunes, which, by the end of the evening, had practically achieved the status of old friends. What really intrigued me were Haydn’s original touches -- the repeated use, for instance, of a long, drawn-out note on the cello before the soloists launches into a theme – and the scope they gave to the four performers in interpreting them. The concerto may not rank among Haydn’s masterpieces, but it’s also not a mere trifle as I had previously thought.

The first four cellists in the Round II, second-part, line-up had rather diverse things to say about Haydn’s music. German Norbert Anger and Russian Alexander Ramm gave the more restrained, “classical” accounts, while American Matthew Zalkind and Armenian Narek Hakhnazaryan both seemed brimming with emotion. Considering that the concerto dates from the early 1760s, my own prejudice lies with the former approach, and it was Anger’s interpretation, in particular, that seemed closest to authenticity. All four, however, played to a very high standard.

Moscow’s Musica Viva chamber orchestra, led by cellist and conductor Vladislav Belinsky, from Astrakhan, gave the competitors what sounded to my ears like ideal support.

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