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Cello Concertos - Released July 6, 2018 | CPO

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
Born in 1911 and 1903 respectively, these German composers – who were, unfortunately for them, born Jewish – Franz Reizenstein and Berthold Goldschmidt were exiled from Germany in 1934 and 1935, but their stories were very different. From 1932 Goldschmidt had made a serious name for himself following the performance of one of his operas in Mannheim. But he was already 29 and had some serious musical and social baggage behind him, not only in the form of a job assisting Erich Kleiber at the Berlin production of Wozzeck. So when he came to Britain, he was already well-regarded. But the unfortunate Reizenstein was only 21 when he came to London, where he wanted to continue the studies he had started with Hindemith in Berlin... Happily for him, he found a space under the benevolent wing of Vaughan Williams, and eventually took English nationality and even became a teacher in the Royal College of Music. As for Goldschmidt, who was already famous and whose opera The Magnificent Cuckold was to have been first performed in 1933 – an ill-fated year – he found himself classed as a "degenerate artist", which prompted his departure shortly after. Neither of the two composers would give into the atonal, serialist Schönbergian torrent, let alone the post-war avant-garde: and so their music was soon thought of as old hat... Goldschmidt even quit composing in 1958, and didn't return to it until the end of his life, once the serialist dictatorship had fallen amid much derision. The two cello concertos supplied here by the great Raphael Wallfisch were written and performed in the 1950s, and then largely forgotten for decades, in spite of the support of the equally-great Feuermann. Here, we find a language which is at once classical and modern, in the tradition of Hindemith and Vaughan Williams, and surely Shostakovitch too – these are works that richly deserve a rediscovery. Unlike the Reizenstein concerto, the Goldschmidt one is not a world premiere. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released June 7, 2019 | CPO

Booklet
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Classical - Released January 3, 2020 | CPO

Booklet
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Classical - Released July 3, 2020 | CPO

Booklet
Mieczysław Weinberg, a composer whose extraordinarily prolix repertoire contains over five hundred works, has been resurfacing over the years after being lost to history. Born in Warsaw in 1919, Weinberg suffered the brunt of Hitler’s hatred and had to flee to the USSR, but his entire family remained behind and were subsequently killed in Nazi concentration camps. He was soon forced to flee once again, this time hiding in Uzbekistan, where he was supported by Shostakovich but was still the victim of anti-Semitic persecution. The power of Weinberg’s music was recognised by many great Soviet musicians who then spread the word in the 1960s for others to play it. He died in great poverty in Moscow, 1996, due to ill health. As the number of musicians performing his works has increased in recent years, his musical stature has now risen to the same level as that of Shostakovich and Bartók. The works recorded here are part of an edition devoted to cello concertos composed by exiled Jewish composers, under the patronage of English cellist Raphael Wallfisch. Written in 1948 and premiered by Rostropovich, the meditative, sombre and tense Cello Concerto, Op. 43, gradually integrated itself into the repertoire of a new generation of performers. The Concertino, which was composed the same year in record time, wasn’t premiered until 2017 and merges Jewish folklore with Polish folk music. © François Hudry/Qobuz