Sunday, June 18
OK, violin soloists have it easy: there are thousands of violin concertos they can choose from, starting in the Baroque era of Bach and Vivaldi, and continuing right up to the present day, with new violin concertos available from composers from John Adams to Ellen Taaffe Zwlich.
Oboe concertos? Not so much. Oh, there are some very fine oboe concertos out there, but they just aren’t being written as often as new works for the violin or piano, it seems.
But on today’s date in 2010, a welcome new oboe concerto by the contemporary Russian composer Rodion Shchedrin received its premiere performance at the Concertgebouw in Amstrerdam. In describing his new work, Shechedrin wrote:
“It was my intention … to give expression to the entire palette of the tonal and technical qualities of this wonderful instrument. In my score there are however two further essential actors: the [English horn] which permanently imitates or answers the solo instrument … and the orchestra itself whose role is … not merely confined to the accompaniment of the soloist [but provides] the chance for individual musicians to demonstrate their great virtuosity in performance both within the ensemble and as soloists.”
Now, Rodion Shchedrin knows a thing or two about writing concertos and has written quite a few: for trumpet, cello, and viola; SIX concertos for piano -- as well as five showpiece “Concertos for Orchestra!”
Music Played in Today's Program
Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932) Oboe Concerto Alexei Ogrinchuk, oboe; Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra; Suzanna Malkki, cond. RCO Live CD 11001