Most helpful critical review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
It's a big NO from me.
on 4 May 2015
The Elgar is one of the most beautiful concertos ever written and now a staple in the cello repertoire. It is my favourite cello concerto and I own more than a dozen recordings of the work. I heard this on Classic FM while in the car, when I switched the radio on it was well into the third (slow) movement and...slow it was indeed, pedantic, soporific, lacking emotion, I didn't know who the soloist was. The 4th movement was better, the tempo was better, although some of the passages I found were a bit too harsh, too aggressive. When the radio presenter revealed the name of the soloist and conductor I was very surprised. No doubt Jackie Du Pre' was an extraordinary cellist, a spirited woman and fantastic musician, her life so tragically and prematurely cut off. But I am afraid this version of the Elgar with Barenboim just didn't do anything for me. The Classic Brit award 1985 winning recording with the RPO, Julian Lloyd Webber and Yehudi Menuhin conducting remains for me the best and unsurpassed. Menuhin had recording the Elgar violin concerto with Elgar himself conducting, he knew very well what the composer wanted to communicate through his music. Of course the "favourite" is a personal choice, there are many, many recordings of the Elgar out there. All I can say is that I didn't like this one with Du Pre' and Barenboim at all and I would have been very disappointed by the CD if I had ordered it based on the feedback I saw here. If you are after a recording of the Elgar with Du Pre' try the one with Barbirolli conducting, much, much better!!!