The repertory for the cello has seen a huge expansion in the 20th century, but Dvořák’s Cello Concerto written in 1895, is still the most popular work ever written for the instrument. One hears echoes of it in countless works written since it was new, and it taught a lesson to Brahms, who said near the end of his life that he would have written a cello concerto himself if he had realized what the instrument was capable of doing. The concerto has a special place in the repertory of virtually all cellists – it acts as their official calling card. Hayoung Choi, one of the most formidable players – of any instrument – on today’s musical scene, is sure to have printed her name indelibly on it.
Brahms never wrote a cello concerto, but, apart from the Double Concerto, the Second Symphony is the closest he ever came to one, with its rich, mellow warm expansiveness. And at the same time, given its wonderful evocation of the sunny out of doors – not a frequent occurrence in the music of Brahms – it might be almost be regarded as Brahms’s own “Pastoral Symphony.”
"[Hayoung Choi is] a wonderful promising instrumentalist with great musical potential...she has a bright future ahead of her." - Gidon Kremer