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With its thrilling Shostakovich score and dramatic texture, Ratmansky’s acclaimed 2008 creation excels with classical ingenuity and contemporary stylishness.
Dmitri Shostakovich wrote his Piano Concerto No. 2, the score of Alexei Ratmansky’s Concerto DSCH, in 1957 as a birthday gift for his 19-year-old son Maxim. The concerto displays the composer's optimistic energy after the repressions of the Stalinist era. The opening allegro evokes a brisk military march with the piano referencing the British melody "Drunken Sailor," contrasting with the soulful nature of the andante movement for the strings, piano, and solo horn. The brief, invigorating allegro finale takes on a 7/8 meter as the entire orchestra sprints to the finish. The ballet's title refers to a musical motif used by Shostakovich to represent himself, with four notes that, when written in German notation, stand in for his initials in the German spelling (D. Sch.). Concerto DSCH, which premiered in 2008, was Ratmansky’s second ballet created for the Company.
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