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< Back to question Who is the greatest cellist of all time? Show more Show less

The cello is a string instrument known for its soulful, singing, almost human voice like sound, and can be found soloing, in chamber music, or as one of the foundation pieces of a symphony orchestra. A number of players have transformed the cello into the solo voice that it is today. But of them, who is the greatest?

Pablo Casals is the greatest cellist Show more Show less

The father of modern cello, Casals helped people to see the cello as a valuable solo instrument.
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Pablo Casals discovered the Bach cello suites for modern players

Largely forgotten, Casals showed the world the beauty and genius of cello music.
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The Argument

Today, musicians regard Bach's six cello suites as the most popular in the world. They didn't always have this prestigious reputation though. Pablo Casals spent years practicing the pieces, which at the time were viewed as technical warmup exercises. Eventually, he became the first musician to perform them in public. When asked about the importance of the pieces, the cellist Lluís Claret said, "It's like our bible." [1] After Casals recorded his interpretation of the pieces in 1936, the pieces were regarded as works of art necessary for any cellist to be seriously considered a master of the instrument. Casals changed the entire culture of the cello and is thus the greatest cellist of all time.

Counter arguments

While Casals did have a significant impact on the cello community, this impact alone is not enough for him to be considered the greatest cellist of all time. He merely laid the foundations for the greatest cellists of all time by popularizing the Bach suites.

Premises

[P1] Casals popularized Bach's six cello suites, opening the music community's eyes to their excellence. [P2] Ultimately, this changed the world of professional cello players. [P3] For this reason, Casals is the greatest cellist of all time.

Rejecting the premises

Proponents


References

  1. https://www.wbur.org/artery/2019/10/18/cellists-boston-pablo-casals

This page was last edited on Monday, 14 Sep 2020 at 15:20 UTC

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