Isn`t this wonderful: four years have passed since I received a BBT Award in 2004. And right now, looking back over the last two months, the effect of this wonderful prize, of all the work and support connected to it, seems more alive then ever…
After intensive preparations four lucky former BBT winners including myself head off together with Mitsuko Uchida to celebrate the Trust’s 5th Anniversary with three concerts in the US. Needless to write that the chance of working on Messiaen’s Quatuor pour la fin du temps with Mitsuko and my wonderful BBT colleagues stands out as a true highlight. Mitsuko just couldn`t be nicer to us! I am about to enjoy an ideal way of making music with somebody as wonderful and superior in experience as Mitsuko. She is a real musical teamplayer while being a constant, subtle inspiration, without ever being intimidating… Something to remember and learn from for the rest of my musical life! I am looking forward already not only to meet up with the same ensemble of friends this coming autumn for further concerts (this time in Europe), but also to musically continue where we stopped after our last concert in New York.
About one year ago the City of London Festival had asked me to think of two programmes that would match one of the themes of their 2008 edition: Swiss music. What I could suggest was strongly linked to the BBT: my BBT supported CD of the cello concerto, the cello sonata and song transcriptions by the very(!) late romantic Swiss composer Othmar Schoeck made the COLF director curious. As a result and to my great pleasure I got together again with Julius Drake (who had been my piano partner already for the mentioned recording) and played a recital presenting Schoeck pieces between sonatas by Mendelssohn and Schubert.
Three nights later I was joined by the Festival Strings Lucerne to give perhaps the London premiere of a cello concerto written in 1949! The orchestra and their conductor have fallen in love with the Schoeck concerto and want to present it on tour in South America in 2011. There continues the “BBT effect”…
Christian Poltéra has recorded three CDs with the support of BBT, each featuring an unsung cello concerto (one each by Schoeck, Honegger and Martin) combined with works for cello and piano. Each of the CDs is recorded on BIS.
Listen to an excerpt from Schoeck: Cello Concerto