The New York Philharmonic on Thursday, January 11.
Is there a rule that since the legendary Jacqueline du Pré made Elgar’s Cello Concerto her signature piece, the work now belongs solely to young, photogenic female cellists? That was my first thought when twenty-four-year-old Alisa Weilerstein walked onstage Thursday night, but I’m being flip, of course, and dreadfully unfair. Weilerstein delivered a ravishing performance of the concerto with the New York Philharmonic, and perhaps the work lends itself to younger soloists. Although Edward Elgar composed it quite late in his career, the cello concerto’s passionate intensity can feel quite youthful.