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Sheku Kanneh-Mason takes on Elgar

The Nottingham cellist throws himself at Edward Elgar's famous concerto, supported by Sir Simon Rattle conducting the London Symphony Orchestra...

By François Hudry | Video of the Day | January 15, 2020

20 years old and a brazen amount of talent: the Afro-British cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason has three idols. Cellists Jacqueline du Pré and Mstislav Rostropovitch and reggae legend Bob Marley, three passionate and extrovert forces. His career really took off after he performed at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding in 2018.

His album Inspiration released the same year broke all sorts of sales records in the United Kingdom and his hometown of Nottingham even named a bus after him.

As part of a partnership with the label Decca, he is back with a new recording, this time dedicated to the famous Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op. 85, accompanied by the London Symphony Orchestra headed by their new conductor, Sir Simon Rattle. A first class encounter which produces a poetic vision, almost like chamber music, of this renowned concerto.

Made famous by Jacqueline du Pré’s versions (with Barbirolli then with her husband Daniel Barenboim), Elgar’s Concerto is accompanied on the track listing by other shorter pieces which were popular among soloists and music lovers alike a century ago, which the younger generation is bringing back in vogue.

The album features arrangements of traditional music and works by Bloch, Elgar, Bridge, Fauré and Klengel. This album takes you from the infinitely large to the infinitely small with the staggering virtuosity of this bright young talent.


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