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Sonata for Cello and Piano

Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932)

Dmitri Sitovetsky

Dmitri Sitovetsky

Composer
Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932)
Composition Year
1996
Work Movements
1. Alegretto
2. Moderato
3. Sostenuto assai - Allegro
Artists
Peter Laul [piano], Marc Coppey [Cello]

Programme Note Writer:
© Fredrik Osterling

Rodion Shchedrin’s Sonata for cello and piano was composed for Mstislav Rostropovich. The first performance took place on 5 May 1997 in Monte Carlo, with the composer himself at the piano, accompanying maestro Rostropovich.

The Cello Sonata, conceived in three movements, contains many intense moments. As often is the case with Shchedrin’s music, one is immediately thrown into emotionally challenging scenery. A form of psychodrama unfolds. The Sonata begins with staccato calls from the piano. The cello then appears, singing long lines. After a while, the instruments change position; the piano sings, and the cello takes over the angular chords. This constitutes one of the fundamental ideas of the sonata: the interchanging of ideas and motifs follows the listener throughout the piece. Maybe this could be said to be a metaphor for the collaboration between Rostropovitch and Shchedrin: two people with only occasionally concurring views on things. But most of all, this seems to be an animated discussion about life and art in a musical form. The cello bursts out in aria-like gestures and melodic lines, bearing witness to the composer’s affinity with stage music and dramatic delivery. The slightly syncopated beginning of the second movement, moderato, heralds a fiery yet playfully adventurous music.

In the sostenuto assai, long held chords and slowly evolving melodic lines are juxtaposed to a pensive and suddenly happier mode. The cumulative tension of the piece as a whole is strong and is carried by melancholy and passion. The streaks of light that are let through the curtains of constant longing, serve to underline the darkest regions of emotion.

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Sonata for Cello and Piano

Composer: Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932)
Performance date: Saturday 4th July 2015
Venue: Bantry House Library, Bantry, Co. Cork, Ireland,

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Composer Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932)
Work Title Sonata for Cello and Piano
Composition Year 1996
Work Movements 1. Alegretto
2. Moderato
3. Sostenuto assai - Allegro
Artist(s) Peter Laul [piano], Marc Coppey [Cello]
Performance Date Saturday 4th July 2015
Performance Venue Bantry House Library, Bantry, Co. Cork, Ireland,
Event Finale
Duration 00:29:46
Recording Engineer Richard McCullough, RTÉ lyric fm
Instrumentation Category Duo
Instrumentation vc, pf
Programme Note Writer © Fredrik Osterling

Rodion Shchedrin’s Sonata for cello and piano was composed for Mstislav Rostropovich. The first performance took place on 5 May 1997 in Monte Carlo, with the composer himself at the piano, accompanying maestro Rostropovich.

The Cello Sonata, conceived in three movements, contains many intense moments. As often is the case with Shchedrin’s music, one is immediately thrown into emotionally challenging scenery. A form of psychodrama unfolds. The Sonata begins with staccato calls from the piano. The cello then appears, singing long lines. After a while, the instruments change position; the piano sings, and the cello takes over the angular chords. This constitutes one of the fundamental ideas of the sonata: the interchanging of ideas and motifs follows the listener throughout the piece. Maybe this could be said to be a metaphor for the collaboration between Rostropovitch and Shchedrin: two people with only occasionally concurring views on things. But most of all, this seems to be an animated discussion about life and art in a musical form. The cello bursts out in aria-like gestures and melodic lines, bearing witness to the composer’s affinity with stage music and dramatic delivery. The slightly syncopated beginning of the second movement, moderato, heralds a fiery yet playfully adventurous music.

In the sostenuto assai, long held chords and slowly evolving melodic lines are juxtaposed to a pensive and suddenly happier mode. The cumulative tension of the piece as a whole is strong and is carried by melancholy and passion. The streaks of light that are let through the curtains of constant longing, serve to underline the darkest regions of emotion.