The second work on the concert program was the Dvořák’s Cello Concerto in B minor with Israeli-American cello soloist Amit Peled joining the symphony, which I have already gushed about in my comments above. Mr. Peled is perhaps the finest cellist in the world today. [No citations; my own humble but I believe accurate estimation.] He is renowned for the fact that he plays the instrument that belonged to the late Pablo Casals, who few people would dispute was the finest cellist of his generation: a Matteo Gofriller cello made around 1700.
Mr. Peled recently completed a world tour with the historic instrument, which was presented to him by Casal’s widow, including a 20 cities U.S. tour culminating in an acclaimed performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington. He has played with many of the world’s major orchestras and in just about all of the world’s major concert halls that are worth playing in. Reviewing a 2010 concert performance by Mr. Peled in Alice Tully Hall, reviewer Allan Kozin of The New York Times wrote of his “warm, glowing tone” and “seductive timbre and an emotionally pointed approach to phrasing that made you want to hear him again. . . .” [Allan Kozin, An Ensemble Sheds a Spotlight on New and Unusual Repertory, The New York Times, Nov. 7, 2010,]