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Digital Subscriptions > The Strad > August 2019 > MENDELSSOHN CELLO SONATA NO.2


Johannes Moser takes a look at tempo, dynamics and the relaionship between instruments in the exciing and energeic irst movement of the D major op.58 Sonata


From Mendelssohn Sonata for Piano and Violoncello in D major op.58. Urtext ediion, paperbound with marked and unmarked string parts. Eds. Ernst- Günter Heinemann, Rudolf Elvers; ingering pf Klaus Schilde; ingering and bowing vc Claus Kanngiesser. Order no.HN 668, ISMN 979-0-2018- 0668-6, €23. Printed with permission of G. Henle Verlag, Munich © 2001

Mendelssohn wrote this piece in 1842–3 for Count Mateusz Wielhorski, a skilled amateur cellist who played it on a Stradivari cello with a fascinating lineage: it was subsequently owned by Karl Davidov, and then Jacqueline du Pré, who recorded her legendary Elgar Concerto on it. It is now in the hands of Yo-Yo Ma. I have had quite a journey with this sonata: I irst worked on it for the Mendelssohn Competition in 2000, and later played it as part of my irst, non-commercial recording project, which was a big adventure for me. In 2012, the Honens International Piano Competition in Calgary, Canada, hired me to play it with each of the 20 contestants in the chamber music round, over 4 or 5 days. I had to make 20 copies of the piece and mark them diferently for each contestant, to work on each individual’s interpretation! For me, this irst movement is tied in spirit to Mendelssohn’s Midsummer Night’s

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About The Strad

Double bassist Leon Bosch discusses his career, and we investigate the bass makers of Manchester. There’s an interview with early music pioneer Eduard Melkus and cellist Johannes Moser gives a Mendelssohn Masterclass. Plus Leonidas Kavakos’s teaching tips