Elgar · Brahms / Weilerstein · Barenboim
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Prelude to Act 3 (00:08:49)
Cello Concerto in E minor (00:33:38)
Alisa Weilerstein Cello
Symphony No. 1 in C minor (00:55:48)
Alisa Weilerstein in conversation with Ludwig Quandt (00:16:51)
On the first of May the Berliner Philharmoniker will give their traditional European Concert, an annual event to celebrate the founding of the orchestra on 1 May 1882. This year the concert, conducted by Daniel Barenboim, will take place at Oxford University’s Sheldonian Theatre. And, as is customary, the musicians will present their programme to the audience in the Philharmonie a few days earlier. You can now enjoy this concert live in the Digital Concert Hall.
As befits the occasion, the musicians have put together a German-British programme, the first half of which features Edward Elgar’s Cello Concerto. Barenboim has already directed this work once before with the orchestra – 40 years ago, together with his wife, Jacqueline du Pré. The soloist this evening is Alisa Weilerstein, making her debut with the Berliner Philharmoniker. About this young American artist Yo-Yo Ma wrote: “I remember that one of my first impressions of her playing was that she is so full of passion. More recently I was struck by how fearless Alisa is. Those two qualities, in combination with a great musical intelligence, really define her artistry for me.”
The German contribution to the programme consists of the Prelude to Act 3 of Richard Wagner’s Meistersinger and Johannes Brahms’s First Symphony. It was Hans von Bülow – principal conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker – who, with regard to this work of Brahms, spoke of “Beethoven’s Tenth” – a bon mot that doubtless promoted the popularity of the work but which fails to do full justice to its forward-looking, individual characteristics.