Ian Cochrane, Bachtrack
Joseph Haydn’s Cello Concerto no. 1 in C major was rediscovered in a library in Prague in 1961. Stéphane Tétreault was the soloist here. While growing up in Montreal, Tétreault was fortunate to have had the late Yuli Turovsky (conductor of the acclaimed chamber orchestra I Musici de Montréal) as his cello teacher.
Tétreault’s performance was the highlight of the concert, his execution impressively clean. Both soloist and orchestra provided a pleasing dance-like effect for the initial theme. Rubato was both judiciously deployed and expertly synchronized with the orchestra. At times, Tétreault’s use of portamento bordered on the excessive for a Haydn concerto. Just prior to the first movement cadenza, the melody was lovingly passed from soloist to first violins – sublime music-making. The initial cello entry in the second movement, comprised of a gently floating sustained note which subsequently takes over the melody from the violins, was exquisitely handled. The second movement cadenza was impressively rhapsodic. The rapid string crossing required of the soloist in the final movement was adroitly handled. Tétreault plays with a maturity beyond his years. His talent looms large.
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