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Rostropovich - Mastercellist. Legendary Recordings 1956-1978 (2 CDs)

Rostropovich - Mastercellist. Legendary Recordings 1956-1978 (2 CDs)

1 Jan 2002
4.2 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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  • Sample this album
    Title by Artist
    0:00 / 0:00
1
15:41
Album Only
2
12:41
Album Only
3
12:58
Album Only
4
12:17
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5
5:02
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6
8:18
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7
6:40
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8
4:13
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Disc 2
1
10:05
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2
5:57
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3
6:04
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4
9:44
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5
9:00
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6
6:37
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7
4:57
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8
3:14
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 1 Jan. 2002
  • Release Date: 8 Mar. 2002
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Decca (UMO)
  • Copyright: (C) 2002 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Hamburg
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 2:13:28
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B004C3OV3I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 111,752 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This two CD set is worth buying for Rostropovich's interpretation of the Schumann cello concerto alone. The Schumann has been recorded by all the big names and as a result there are many fine versions available. However, none of them compare to this one... duPre has the strengh and power but lacks refinement... Isserlis sacrifices intensity for technical perfection... Yo Yo Ma's interpretation is engaging but hardly heart-rending. Only Rostropovich does the music justice. Here passion, sensitivity and longing are united in the most exquisite cello tone imaginable. More than any other this recording communicates the soul of the cello.
The recording of the Dvorak cello concerto included here is widely regarded as definitive and has yet to be surpassed. It makes the perfect companion for the Schumann concerto because in temperament they are opposites. The Dvorak has an extrovert beauty, it's an epic filled with drama and verve and the perfect vehicle for Rostropovich's talent.
Rachmaninov's cello sonata is sublime. This piece has many gorgeous melodies that really allow the instrument to sing and deserves to be better known. Of course, this is arguably the finest interpretation to be heard, better than Truls Mork and Yo Yo Ma anyway. In Rostropovich's hands it's world of emotion is fully realised.
The other works are far more than just "fillers". Glazunov's Chant du Menestral has one of the most haunting and beautiful melodies composed for any instrument. The Tchaikovsky piece is delicate and pretty although not as immediate as the other works. And Chopin's Polonaise Brilliante is a thrilling virtuoso showpiece that exhibits Rostropovich's phenomenal technique.
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For the reader with an appreciation of classical music and a bent for the cello, this is a dream two CD compilation.

The rationale for the compilation appears on the cover and in the body of the liner note:the compilation comprises legendary recordings by the mastercellist Mstislav Rostropovich between the years 1956 and 1978 and was released to commemorate the 75th birthday anniversary of the artist.

The first disc concerns orchestral works while the second chamber music specifically works for cello and piano, in some instances transcriptions. And though invariably all pieces in both discs possess a gem like quality, I shall confine the argument to the Dvorak and the Schumann cello concertos and the Rachmaninov sonata for piano and cello.

The first disc commences with the Dvorak cello concerto with which I shall begin the discussion. The Dvorak is a magnificent piece of work but in this instance there is something of a benign conspiracy or a small miracle in that the artist performs with the Berlin Philharmonic under the direction of Herbert von Karajan and not only that but at a time that cellist, conductor and orchestra were at their peak. Of the many recordings of the Dvorak by the artist this is arguably the best but I shall go even further than that and argue that this is possibly the best recording of the work of all times. The Dvorak is immediately followed in the disc by the Schumann which is similarly the best of the cellist's many recordings of the work. There is something of a poetic quality in the Schumann which finds its full expression in the hands of the rare artistic talent of Rostropovich. The first work in the second disc is Rachmaninov's sonata for cello and piano.
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I bought this particularly for the Rachmaninov Cello Sonata, of which I had a much loved but long lost Melodiya vinyl recording. Much as I greatly admire and respect Slava Rostropovich ( in fact I had the great honour of meeting him in the 1970s - a truly wonderful person), I find his performance a little too lush and his vibrato too frenetic. Sorry Slava! Wonderful and emotional playing, but I would prefer it a little more sparse and restrained. I realise however that this is very much a matter of personal taste.
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This recording is exceptional- no comparison for these particular pieces- outstanding performances- I recommend all music lovers to take the plunge and dive into the ultimate 'cello experience!
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Very good. Not to be missed. Mstislav Rostropovich really is a master cellist, and he is playing some unusual pieces.
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