Capuçon plays Elgar
Concerto for violin and orchestra in B minor op. 61
The Rite of Spring, scenes from pagan Russia in two parts
Much less well known than its cello counterpart, Edward Elgar's Violin Concerto in B minor was premiered with triumphant success by Viennese violinist Fritz Kreisler under the composer's direction in 1910. Kreisler later made a famous recording of it with the 16-year-old Yehudi Menuhin. With its Schumann-like romanticism, it is one of the longest works in the entire repertoire. By the composer's own admission, it is deliberately autobiographical, describing both love for his wife and languid regret. Our soloist tonight, Renaud Capuçon, recently recorded it in London under Sir Simon Rattle.
A true manifesto of modernity, The Rite of Spring is a thunderbolt in the still-clear skies of 1913. By taking over the great Mahlerian orchestra, Stravinsky breaks the mould with an insolent genius.