Magazine article Gramophone

Britten's Cello Symphony: Three Earlier Recordings of Britten's Cello Symphony-And How Gramophone Rated Them

Magazine article Gramophone

Britten's Cello Symphony: Three Earlier Recordings of Britten's Cello Symphony-And How Gramophone Rated Them

Article excerpt

DECEMBER 1964

Britten Cello Symphony

Mstislav Rostropovich vc

ECO / Benjamin Britten

Decca [LP] SXL6138 (12in * 32s 3d)

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Performances by what one might call the original cast almost always have something special about them. The present record captures the very individual orchestral sound and places the soloist in an absolutely natural relationship with it. As for the performance, it is quite simply beyond praise. Rostropovich is so completely inside the music that one ceases to be aware whether what he is doing is difficult or not (much of it is) and the English Chamber Orchestra play with a rhythmic precision and a dynamic range that give every detail its due weight and character. Jeremy Noble

MAY 2011

Britten Cello Symphony

Paul Watkins vc

BBC PO / Edward Gardner

Chandos [F] CHAN10658 (76' * DDD)

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Getting to grips with Britten's music in the opera house has done Edward Gardner no harm at all. By pacing the score tautly and making sure this often brooding music never stands still, he provides a strong framework for Paul Watkins's expressive playing. …

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