Mario CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO (1895–1968)
Cello Concerto - 1
Transcriptions for Cello and Piano - 2
Brinton Averil Smith, Cello - Evelyn Chen, Piano - 2
Houston Symphony - 1 / Kazuki Yamada - 1
Inspired by the personality, prodigious technique and musicality of the cellist Gregor Piatigorsky, Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Cello Concerto is a work of imposing scale and demanding virtuosity, but also with a rare beauty and warmth of expression. This live recording documents the first professional performances of the concerto in more than 80 years, and is paired with playful and virtuosic freely composed transcriptions for cello and piano of Mozart, Rossini and Ravel that Castelnuovo-Tedesco made for Piatigorsky and Heifetz.
Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s career was interrupted by his move to America in 1939 to escape the Fascist regime in Italy. He worked as a film composer in Hollywood, and as a result his concert works have become neglected, and he is now best remembered as a composer for the guitar. There is something of an ongoing revival however, of which this program is a part.
Acclaimed cellist Brinton Averil Smith appeared on our ‘American Classics’ album of music by Steven Gerber, in which “[Kurt] Nikkanen and the extraordinary cellist Brinton Averil Smith bring out the changing moods and colors of the virtuosic ‘Duo for Cello and Violin’” (Strings Magazine). “Gerber is indeed fortunate to have this disc performed by such an elite group of players… Here all are virtuosi in their own right as well as sounding thoroughly committed to the sound-world Gerber creates.” (MusicWeb International)
This release follows successful Houston Symphony recordings for Naxos, such as the “wonderfully lush” (The Dallas Morning News) version of Zemlinsky’s Lyric Symphony, and the GRAMMY® Award-winning recording of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck in which “the orchestra plays stunningly.” (ClassicsToday)
|Release Period||June 2018|