Mstislav Rostropovich 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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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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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. 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.
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.