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Solist: Thomas Carroll, cello
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Symphony No. 4 in A major, Op. 90, Italian
Antonin Dvořák, Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104
The works of Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847) reveal the taste of a Romantic gazing back towards the past – his style was never radical or innovative. Mendelssohn preferred to infuse established musical forms with his own content, often inspired by the beauty of nature. His works are therefore pleasant and picturesque. Many of them have a “travel” flavour due to the programmatic titles and the perceptible tone painting, as well as the clear link between the composer’s travels and his inspiration. Among the works of this kind are the Hebrides Overture, the Scottish Symphony and also the work on the present programme, the Italian Symphony, which was commenced in 1832 during Mendelssohn’s stay in Italy.
Antonin Dvořák (1841-1904) was one of the first Czech composers to achieve international fame. He incorporated many elements of the folk music of his homeland into his music, thus affiliating himself with the national movement that was a feature of the music of the late Romantic period. By incorporating the folk tradition into his symphonic and chamber music, he created a distinctive Czech folk style, continuing the tradition begun by his predecessor Bedřich Smetana. Among Dvořák’s many orchestral works, his three concertos occupy a special place alongside the nine symphonies. In addition to concertos for piano and violin, respectively, we also find the Cello Concerto in B minor from 1895. At the present concert, the solo part will be performed by the excellent British cellist Thomas Carroll, who lectures at the Royal College of Music in London and at the Yehudi Menuhin School, and has performed as a soloist with orchestras such as the London Symphony Orchestra, the Welsh National Orchestra and the Vienna Chamber Orchestra.