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Violoncello concerto : cello with orchestra

by Philip Bracanin (1989)

Audio Sample

Performance by Tibor Boganyi, Kapubandi Orchestra from the CD Violin concerto & cello concerto

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Violin concerto & cello concerto


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Violin concerto & cello concerto / Philip Bracanin.

Library shelf no. CD 2561 [Available for loan]

Violoncello concerto


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Violoncello concerto / Philip Bracanin.

Library shelf no. 784.274/BRA 1 [Available for loan]

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Work Overview

Written in 1989 as a commission from Gary Williams, Principal Cello of the Queensland Symphony, the Cello Concerto comprises two movements of contrasting tempo and mood. The first is slow and nostalgic in character while the second is imbued with rhythmic energy and vibrant orchestral colours. In commissioning the work, Gary made two requests; that I write a movement based on a melancholic cantabile theme and include an extensive section for cello and percussion. The principal theme of the first movement fulfils the first request and the second movement contains a canon for cello and two percussion instruments sounded against a veiled and sustained string background.

Both movements are episodic in form. In the first movement the opening theme is presented three times, each time in a different orchestral context. The second time it is played by the oboe with the cello weaving a counter melody around it. Its third appearance is in the upper tessitura of the cello against a background of pastel shimmering orchestral ambience. In the second movement this theme is recalled fleetingly on the solo violin, just prior to the Doppler-like canon. Towards its conclusion the piece builds in moto perpetuo fashion with the cello diving the music ever forwards.

Work Details

Year: 1989

Instrumentation: Solo cello, 2 flutes, 2 oboes (2nd doubling horn), 2 clarinets in B flat (2nd doubling bass clarinet), 2 bassoons (2nd doubling contra-bassoon), 2 horns in F, 2 trumpets in B flat, timpani, percussion, strings.

Duration: 15 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: I. Andante cantabile e grazioso -- II. Allegro assai.

Commission note: Commissioned by Gary Williams.


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