‘We enjoy playing softly together’ - Session Report: Pablo Ferrández and Anne-Sophie Mutter

ASM & PB Recording Session publicity shot 2

Cellist Pablo Ferrández talks to Peter Quantrill his latest recording with violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter

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The Deutsche Grammophon LP cover of Anne-Sophie Mutter’s first recording of the Brahms ‘Double’ Concerto, issued in 1983, tells a story of its own. There she is, not yet 20 years old, perhaps mid-banter with the 20-something Antonio Meneses. Between them, smaller and evidently frail, the ghost of a mordant smile playing across his lips, the figure of Herbert von Karajan occupies a kind of negative space.

Almost 40 years on, the amiability is replaced by warm rapport between Mutter and the cellist Pablo Ferrández on the cover of their new Sony recording. Appropriately so, when the pair have a history with the piece that goes beyond contractual requirements and rehearse– record schedules. ‘I first played the Brahms with Anne-Sophie in 2017,’ recalls Ferrández, ‘and she very casually said that we should record it one day. So I said, “Sure…” Next time we played it, she mentioned it again and asked me which orchestra we should record it with. Then she said that she knew the ideal partners: the Czech Philharmonic and Manfred Honeck.’…

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