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Classical 101

Celebrating Jacqueline du Pr

The great cellist Jacqueline du Pré would have been 70 years old today. She was born in Oxford, England  January 26, 1945 into a musically-rich family. According to the cellist's memorial website, she heard the sound of a cello on the radio just before her fifth birthday after already showing distinct musical promise from an even younger age. Thankfully her parents only fanned that fire. In 1965 Jacqueline recorded the Elgar Concerto with Sir John Barbirolli and the London Symphony Orchestra at the ripe old age of 20. Here she is performing the 1st Movement of Elgar's Cello Concerto with Daniel Barenboim conducting the London Philharmonic in 1967. Her expressiveness within her sense of poise and restraint is perfect for Elgar, in my opinion.  That same year she married the great conductor and their collaborative works are just phenomenal. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUgdbqt2ON0 Ms. du Pré unfortunately passed away in 1987 at the age of 47 after battling multiple sclerosis for almost 15 years. Her legacy of recordings is just inspiring. Her website has a link for donations to be given in her memory for research in MS, and I can think of few artists more worthy of such a tribute: http://www.msif.org/get-involved/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6wt64X8Am0