Elgar-Walton: Cello Concertos
It is with tremendous pleasure that ORFEO International
presents Daniel Müller-Schott’s new CD featuring the cello concertos of Edward Elgar and William Walton, two works which since their premières in 1919 and 1957 respectively have been among the touchstones of the repertory of all great cellists. Both works, moreover, have fascinated Daniel Müller-Schott since his early adolescence and fired his artistic imagination.
Daniel Müller-Schott is joined by André Previn
Foto: Tom Spechton the podium of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. Not only was Previn a personal friend of Walton but he has long been a champion of the English concert repertory from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Benjamin Britten and beyond. It is difficult to imagine a better basis for an idiomatic and dazzling interpretation of these two concertos.
Elgar’s Cello Concerto is regarded as his last great work. In the early years of the 20th century he had been hailed by Strauss, no less, as „the first English progressive“. Under the shock of the First World War and of various setbacks in his private life, Elgar succeeded one last time in writing a work no less powerful and compelling than his Variations on an Original Theme (“Enigma“) and The Dream of Gerontius, both of which were so typical of his early style. His Cello Concerto is permeated by a sense of nostalgia and by the pain of parting but also by a spirit of belligerence. Daniel Müller-Schott brings out all the layers of meaning in a work whose main theme he sees as Schumannesque in inspiration.
Conversely, Daniel Müller-Schott feels that Walton’s Cello Concerto conjures up the atmosphere of the Mediterranean. It was here, after all, on the island of Ischia that Walton wrote the work. As in a tone poem, orchestra and soloist urge each other on, building to the most tempestuous climaxes, after which passages of great lyricism suggest nothing so much as a gloriously colourful sunset, providing a raptly otherworldly ending to this multifaceted recording.