Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971)
Concerto in D (Basle
The concerto in D was the composer's first post war commission
Europe. It was written for the extraordinary Paul Sacher,
conductor of the Basle Chamber Orchestra. Sacher was responsible
for all the greatest works for string orchestra this century.
Strauss, Bartok, Honegger, Martinu, Hindemith all wrote for him.
Stravinsky wrote that the "Concerto in Re" is exactly
that as it is very difficult for every instrumentalist in the
orchestra and also for the conductor. Its virtuosity is
unparalleled in the repertoire for string orchestra. Stravinsky
moves with great wit between D Major and d minor throughout the
work. This is the under current of the piece - this shifting of
two different keys in D. At the very opening this is made clear
with a clashing of the two when the violas and bass group play an
f natural (creating a d minor chord) and the violins an f sharp (
D Major ) in the 3rd bar. Like the ballet Apollo, also for
strings, Stravinsky writing is born from the great Russian String
Tradition as is clear from the richness of the score and the
lightness of performance that the work demands.
© Lygia O'Riordan