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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?

Mstislav Rostropovich is the greatest cellist Show more Show less

Rostropovich was a Russian master, who brought a new technical expertise and musicality to the instrument, and new repertoire into the world.
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Mstislav Rostropovich premiered the Shostakovich Cello Concerto No. 1

Composer Dimitri Shostakovich wrote the concerto for Rostropovich, who committed it to memory in 4 days.
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The Argument

In 1959, Dimitri Shostakovich wrote his cello concerto no. 1 for Rostropovich. He committed it to memory in four days before performing it for Shostakovich. Two days later, Rostropovich performed the piece in Moscow and received extensive praise.[1] Rostropovich was known for having great relationships with composers, many even wrote pieces for him. He played every piece with unique style and grace and had an exquisite technique that brought his performances to the next level.[2]

Counter arguments

While Rostropovich was a talented cellist, he is best known for having composers as some of his closest friends. Had it not been for these relationships, he would have never had pieces written specifically for him. Rostropovich benefited from his friendships. He may be a good friend and a great cellist, but he is not the greatest cellist of all time.


Rejecting the premises




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


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