Steven Isserlis director and cello
Zsolt-Tihamér Visontay director and violin
MOZART Divertimento in D major, K. 136
HAYDN Cello Concerto No. 1
BLOCH From Jewish Life
SCHUBERT Symphony No. 5
Steven Isserlis is possibly the UK’s best-loved, most highly respected solo cellist. His distinctive sound (brought about by playing on warmer gut strings) and appearance have earned him a place at the forefront of British musical life for several decades. In this concert he performs Haydn’s First Cello Concerto – a demanding work that requires virtuosic fireworks – directing it from the soloist’s platform. He then returns to the stage to perform a deeply moving 1924 piece by the Swiss-American composer Ernst Bloch. The piece is in three movements: Jewish Song, Supplication and Prayer with the latter, in the words of Isserlis (who commissioned its orchestration), being “surely one of the most fervently beautiful pieces ever written for the cello”.
Please join us for a free pre-concert talk from 6.15pm to 6.50pm with Steven Isserlis and the Philharmonia’s Joint Concert Master, violinist Zsolt-Tihamér Vistonay, as they discuss the influences and inspirations behind their careers alongside the music of the night’s concert, hosted by BBC Radio Leicester’s John Florance.