Solo Cello

GIOVANNI SOLLIMA (b.1962): Concerto Rotondo, Alone, CHRISTOPH CROISÉ (b.1993): Spring Promenade, PÉTER PEJTSIK (b.1968): Stonehenge, THOMAS BURITCH (b.1972): Some like to show off, GYÖRGY LIGETI (1923-2006): Sonata, ZOLTÁN KODÁLY (1882-1967): Sonata, Op. 8.

Catalogue Number: 09X051

Label: Avie

Reference: AV2466

Format: CD

Price: $17.98

Description: A very varied and very enjoyable recital of thoroughly accessible pieces. Aside from the magnificent masterpiece that is Kodaly Sonata and the splendid Ligeti, with its melodic loveliness and dramatic excitement - both brimming with innovation when they first appeared - the other works also introduce some kind of novelty to the cello repertoire. The star of the show has to be Sicilian cello virtuoso Sollima's wildly innovative yet instantly appealing "Concerto" - this is the solo version of a work that exists in several ensemble transcriptions. The cello is in scordatura tuning for additional resonance, and the performer is required to master a huge range of novel techniques in bowing, multiple-stopping, and playing with both hands. In the first movement only, (optional) electronic looping is used to add a canonic texture to the cello's slow undulations. The second movement explodes with energy, with rapid-running figuration over drone accompaniment, a vigorous folk-like dance, and exuberant swoops and strumming. This leads into a movement that sounds like transcribed variations of a very southern-European (presumably Sicilian) folksong, with countless ingenious evocations of folk instruments. These continue in the final movement, with drumming and pizzicato effects adding colours and textures to a movement based on a theme resonant with a sense of Baroque and even Mediæval antiquity. Croisé's piece is jaunty and jolly, with allusions to folk and pop music, electric guitars, and a good deal of good-humoured technical showing off. Pejtsik's career alternates between contemporary classical music and symphonic rock, and his piece sounds like it, with an insistent rhythmic beat and electric guitar effects that sound like (an especially accomplished example of) the various "Hendrix on classical instruments" transcriptions of yesteryear. Sollima's Alone was written as a competition piece. It consists of alternating sections of drone-accompanied melody with a middle-Eastern feel, and frantically motoric fast music. Croatian cellist-composer Buritch also wrote his piece as competition fodder. Exuberantly bluesy and jazzy, it makes an exhilarating encore. Christoph Croisé (cello).

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