We invite you to revisit this, our tribute to the then living
icon of music - Mstislav Rostropovich, Slava! to his friends,
on the occasion of his 70th birthday. For your beautiful music
and for all your cultural and humanitarian contributions to
the world - THANK YOU, MAESTRO! And FAREWELL.
clip is from Ludwig von Beethoven, Sonata No. 2 in G minor, Op.
5 No.2, for Cello and Piano, Mstislav Rostropovich (cello), Sviatoslav
Richter (piano) (1963, 1967);
Beethoven: Complete Music for Cello and Piano; Philips D206206
(442 566-2), Philips Classics Productions 1994.
A thankful musical world celebrated this milestone year (1997)
in the Maestro's life. FanFaire was fortunate to have
attended the Boston Symphony Orchestra's concert celebration
last spring. The concert marked the world premier of a work
entitled "Chanson for Cello and Orchestra" composed
as a birthday gift to Rostropovich by the young American composer
Augusta Read Thomas and conducted by BSO's Maestro Seiji Ozawa.
Rostropovich in turn honored the composer by playing the solo
cello part. This work is one of the latest additions to an ever
growing list of first performances played and/or conducted by
Rostropovich - more than 60 composers make up the list that
glitters with such illustrious names as Britten and Bernstein,
Kachaturian and Prokokiev, Schnittke and Shostakovich (click
HERE for partial listing).
This year also marked the release on compact disc of the "authorized"
edition of his pre-1974 Soviet performances, heretofore unheard
in the West. Comprising 13 CDs, the set issued through EMI,
contains government recordings of his concert performances made
without his consent before his expulsion from the Soviet Union.
The works in the set were specially selected by him, and includes
works by non-Russian composers; but especially noteworthy are
the recordings of first performances of cello works written
for Rostropovich himself by such great composers as Britten,
Prokokiev and Shostakovich as well as by lesser known Russian
composers whose works he seeks to promote today. The set, accompanied
by a booklet containing commentary by Rostropovich in his own
words constitute a unique historical record of Soviet musical
life in that era.