Lunchtime concert: Leo Popplewell - Cello

The solo cello suite blossomed in the Twentieth Century following the rediscovery and recording of Bach’s six cello suites by Pablo Casals. Among the most well known subsequent composers in this genre was Benjamin Britten, whose three suites stretch the limitations of the solo cello to new bounds. Much of the first suite is rooted in Baroque forms, with a chorale-like and original ‘canto’ acting as a structural ritornello for the suite.
Stephen Dodgson’s Partita from 1985 offers a highly characterised exploration of the classical suite, his language not too far afield from Britten, and similarly coherent in structure. In contrast, Elliott Carter’s short Figment from 1994 is an explosion of cellist virtuosity, based on a single musical idea and typically highly rhythmically organised.

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