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Legacy (Christian-Pierre La Marca)

Christian-Pierre La Marca (cello); Le Concert de la Loge/Julien Chauvin (Naïve)

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

Haydn: Cello Concertos Nos 1 & 2; Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante, KV Anhang 104/320E; plus works by Gluck and Porpora
Christian-Pierre La Marca (cello); Le Concert de la Loge/Julien Chauvin
Naïve V7259   70:35 mins


This album contextualises Haydn’s two surviving cello concertos with music by his teacher Porpora, and a reconstruction of the incomplete Allegro from Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for string trio. Le Concert de la Loge is a small group, and its opening tutti in the C major Concerto is lithe and rhythmically taut, heralding Christian-Pierre La Marca’s entry, elegant and light, even in the many chords. The cadenza (La Marca’s own) departs from the style too much, but the Andante has poise, and is beautifully shaped in dynamics, with sparing vibrato and rubato, before the finale, a real Allegro molto, kept on a tight rein. The later D major Concerto is a more genial work in its thematic contours and rhythmic profile, and enjoys a performance to match: phrasing is smoother, and the blend of the sound rounder. This comes to the fore especially in the Adagio, where La Marca’s effortless double stops sing out and enhance the melodic line.

The Mozart reconstruction by Robert Levin is a tantalising glimpse of what would surely have been a major work, with confident interplay within the trio and with the orchestra. The Porpora concerto movement is less interesting than an aria from one of his operas with two cellos, lifted by the casting of Jaroussky. Gluck’s Dance of the Blessed Spirits seems superfluous.


Martin Cotton