This recording by conductor Simon Rattle and cellist Sol Gabetta enable us to experience music of great contrast that ranges from the quiet and sublime, to the strongly rhythmic.
The selections are:
Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85, with Sol Gabetta (cello)
The Rite of Spring
Lohengrin: Prelude to Act 1
All performed with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Sir Simon Rattle conducting.
The orchestra performs the prelude to Wagner’s Lohengrin, György Ligeti’s orchestral piece Atmosphères and Igor Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps, a work which is entirely focused on new sound of the early 1900’s, and pushes the boundaries of classical music in terms of sound, rhythm and energy.
Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker contrast the prelude to Wagner’s Lohengrin and György Ligeti’s orchestral piece “Atmosphères” perfectly, demonstrating that they both employ different styles to pursue a similar objective – an iridescent, otherworldly sound.
Star cellist Sol Gabetta provides an outstanding interpretation of Elgar’s Cello Concerto: the final great work of the composer, full of melancholy and a sense of farewell.
In contrast to Elgar, Igor Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps is focused on the future. Despite its inherent modern sound it also provides a wealth of sensual pleasure which the musicians communicated with total ease.
Here is a brief extract of the Elgar concerto: