SAINT-SAENS – Cello Concerto in A minor for soloist and cello orchestra (or soloist & 4 Cellos)
I always felt that a cello ensemble version with soloist would make a most interesting option for almost everyone of medium-advanced levels! That is to say: music conservatoires, the cello sections of professional or advanced level community symphony orchestras, and certainly to the younger generation of promising cellists who understandably wish to get the feel of what it is really like playing a ‘big’ concerto but do not (as of yet!) have a concert performance invitation from a full orchestra. So the idea, in part, is for a soloist to gain increasing confidence, by fully hearing the sustaining harmonies in a way in which a piano alone does not offer you.
It can be equally well played by an accompanying cello quartet or by a larger ensemble of ensembles (in which case please always play divisi when opportunities arise; there are a number of them occurring regularly so having more voices is always enriching!). What I have basically done is to go half-way between using the piano reduction and the general orchestral score, literally checking every phrase. But that way it is well useful to see which type of version works best for cello ensemble. The work is transcribed in full without any cuts, and although stating ‘rehearsal cello ensemble’ it is suitable for all formal and informal performances, and should work perfectly.
The result is in the web ‘Johnstone-Music’ for download at a symbolic price (2€ per movement which includes all the individual parts). The third movement includes the two cadenzas of Popper and Johnstone.
See (click) here, alphabetically listed under surname of the composer: https://johnstone-music.com/product-category/5-7-cellos-quintetos-sextetos-and-septetos/?lang=en
Hear another SAINT-SAENS work that I previously arranged with cello ensemble!
[ 1 ] Allegro Appassionato Op 43, Saint Saëns – Javier Martínez Campos, Classe d´Excellence Louis Vuitton
Enjoy the music!