It’s the Lebrecht Album of the Week, a rare five-star find.
We’ve omitted the soloist’s name from the sample text below to keep you guessing:
In this live concert with the Berlin Philharmonic and Sir Simon Rattle, ****** is more languorous and, one suspects, more herself. The opening phrases are so leisurely you can imagine half the orchestra taking an illicit sip of tea from an under-chair flask, knowing there is plenty of time before they have to come in. But her tempo is immediately convincing and musically coherent. It pays off with a transcendent pair of inner movements in which beauty is never defeated by melancholy, and the tremors of an old man’s regrets are laid to rest with a blessing.
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The cellist in the picture is Beatrice Harrison, who gave the first performance of the concerto outside London.