John Joubert’s Concerto in Two Movements for Cello and Chamber Orchestra was first performed on Sunday 4th March 2012 in St Mary’s Church, Shrewsbury, by the Northern Chamber Orchestra conducted by Jonathan Berman, with cellist Raphael Wallfisch. The Concerto was commissioned by Raphael Wallfisch.
The second movement begins with a slow soliloquy for cello alone. This leads into the main body of the movement which, now in a lively allegro tempo, revisits in varied form the four main themes of the first. The last of these reappears as a fugue for string quartet for which the cello provides the first entry of the subject. This is interrupted by another reflective monologue for solo cello introducing the second half of the movement, with the basic themes repeated in various ways leading to an energetic dialogue between solo and orchestra. Eventually they coincide in an emphatic final cadence in the main key of the work – Ab major.
The concerto was commissioned by Raphael Wallfisch and is dedicated to my cellist daughter, Anna.