I prefer this concerto recording to Slava’s

From the Lebrecht Album of the Week:

Mstislav Rostropovich commissioned more than 100 works for his instrument and performed some of them more than once. Aside from the two Shostakovich concertos and the symphony-concerto by Prokofiev, only the Britten Cello Symphony and the concertos by Lutoslawki and Dutilleux get heard much these days.

The latter pair are performed….

Read on here.

And here.


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  • Obviously some one has never heard Daniil Shafran play Prokofiev Symphony-Concertante. Rostropovich could have learned a thing or two from Shafran.

  • Wow Mr. Lebrecht, you are incredibly harsh on the Lutosławski concerto! Good of you to have strong opinions and to voice them bravely without being afraid of any “correctness”, but come on: “as if he has (…) forgotten he booked an orchestra” – this is really unjust speaking of one of the most self-conscious and analytical masters of them all! You are basically writing (tongue in cheek, I hope) “poor Witold was so uninspired that he forgot even the fundamentals of his trade”. Did you watch this: https://youtu.be/Se-S8iEMWI8 ?

    • It might not have been that large a sum of money since: (i) they knew each other socially and admired each other as musicians; (ii) Shostakovich received an income from the Soviet state to compose music, in return he was expected to compose music; (iii) there really wasn’t much for him to spend large amounts of money on. Besides which, Rostropovich would not himself have had much money to spend on commissions while he lived in the USSR.

  • Did Rostropovich “commission” or premiere the Henri Sauguet “Melodie Concertante?” It is a lovely work which should be played more often.

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