Rózsa: Cello Concerto; Sinfonia Concertant for Violin & Cello

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Rózsa
LABELS: ASV Gold
ALBUM TITLE: Rózsa
WORKS: Cello Concerto; Sinfonia Concertant for Violin & Cello
PERFORMER: Raphael Wallfisch (cello), Philippe Graffin (violin); BBC Concert Orchestra/ Barry Wordsworth
CATALOGUE NO: GLD 4018
Like all the finest composers for the

Advertisement

cinema – Korngold, Herrmann, Rota

– Miklós Rózsa kept one foot in the

concert hall. As well as nearly 100

film scores written between 1937

and 1981, he left a sizeable body of

works in virtually every medium bar

opera. He had a particular penchant

for the concerto, writing seven, if we

include his 1943 Concerto for Strings

and the Spellbound Concerto derived

from the Hitchcock film score. Both

the Cello Concerto (written for Janos

Starker) and the Sinfonia concertante

(effectively a double concerto for

Heifetz and Piatigorsky) were

written in the 1960s, in the distinctly

Hungarian-imbued style Rózsa

reserved for his concert works.

Raphael Wallfisch has clearly

taken this music to heart, giving

a big-boned, expressive reading of

the Cello Concerto that makes one

wonder why it hasn’t become as

popular as, say, the Walton. He finds

his equal in Philippe Graffin in the

Sinfonia concertante – their octave

melodies are beautifully sustained

and there’s plenty of give and take

throughout (unlike Heifetz and

Piatigorsky’s original collaboration,

which reportedly descended into

diva-ish bickering). The BBC

Concert Orchestra is caught in virile

form and the Walthamstow Town

Hall acoustic lends the recording

Advertisement

plenty of presence. Matthew Rye