Antonín Dvořák’s Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104 premiered on this day in 1896 – 123 years ago.
The first performance was given by English cellist Leo Stern.
It’s believed Dvořák initially refused requests to compose the work, stating “the cello was a fine orchestral instrument … but totally insufficient for a solo concerto.”
The cornerstone of today’s cello virtuosi repertoire, the concerto has been recorded by nearly every well-known cellist – with the work often lauded as ‘supreme’, ‘the greatest’ and ‘the king’.