Felip Pedrell: I trionfi (The Triumphs): “Trionfo della morte” and “Trionfo della fama”, symphonic poem (1880) 12′
Witold Lutosławski: Cello Concerto (1969-1970) 24′
Johannes Brahms: Symphony No. 2 in D, Op. 73 (1877) 43′
Barcelona Symphony Orchestra (OBC)
Nicolas Altstaedt, cello
Ludovic Morlot, conductor
Johannes Brahms’ Symphony No. 2, which dates back to the same creative period and shares the same tonality as his Violin Concerto, can be regarded as the apotheosis of musical Romanticism, enriched by a multitude of influences. From the moment it opens, a subtle atmosphere of melancholic joy, filled with chiaroscuros, is created through gentle dialogue between the horns and woodwind instruments, tempered by the strings. It is a superb compendium of the “plastic beauty” that Daniel Gregory Mason found in Brahms’ work.
Witold Lutosławski was one of the longest-standing representatives of Polish avant-garde musical composition. A great personality and a composer with a solid career, Lutoslawki’s highly memorable Cello Concerto–premiered by Mstislav Rostropovich and written during the composer’s mature stage after other important orchestral works, such as his Symphony No. 2–offers the keys to understanding the intricacies of music from the second half of the 20th century.
Felip Pedrell completed his symphonic poems after stays in Italy and France, before Richard Strauss managed to finish his. Together with Excelsior, written in the same year and recorded in 2001 by the OBC, I trionfi (Triumphs) represents one of his most productive periods. The manuscript of the score contains copied fragments of I trionfi, Petrarch’s allegorical poem that inspired the Tortoso-born composer in his work for orchestra: “What profit have ye from your blind pursuits? Ye all return to the great ancient mother: Even the memory of your names is lost”. This concert will recapture a piece of our musical heritage so that fame triumphs over death.
This concert is included in the program of the Barcelona Obertura Spring Festival 2023