Beyond the Notes: Unaccompanied Cello from Bach to the Grateful Dead

Beyond the Notes: Unaccompanied Cello from Bach to the Grateful Dead

Join Boyer Professor of Music Jeffrey Solow for a celebration of the cello as a solo instrument, starting with where it all began: Johann Sebastian Bach's Suite #1 in G for unaccompanied cello. Bach's six suites for solo cello, the earliest art music composed for unaccompanied cello, have inspired what has become a large and varied repertoire from the strictly classical to works demonstrating folk, jazz, and rock influences. These last are exemplified by Aaron Minsky's setting of four Grateful Dead songs, which will end the program. Between these two suites, bridging the gap between Baroque and rock, Mr. Solow will honor his teacher, the great Gregor Piatigorsky, with several solo works that have a connection to the Russian-American cellist who spent part of his career in Philadelphia. 

Jeffrey Solow's impassioned and compelling playing has enthralled audiences throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America, and Asia in performances as recitalist, orchestral soloist, and chamber musician. Mr. Solow's concerto appearances include performances of more than forty different works with orchestras including the Los Angeles Philharmonic (also at the Hollywood Bowl), Japan Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony, Prime Symphony Orchestra (Korea), Milwaukee Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, VNOB (Hanoi), and the American Symphony (with whom he has also recorded), and he has been guest artist at many national and international chamber music festivals. He has recorded for numerous record labels and received two Grammy Award nominations. This past summer he performed his eleventh cycle of Bach’s suites at NYC’s floating venue, Bargemusic. 

Suite #1 in G (c. 1720)        JS Bach  

   Menuets I & II

Syrinx  - Gregor Piatigorsky  

March from Suite for Children  - Serge Prokofiev-G. Piatigorsky  

Impromptu, op. 90c (1963) (written as a birthday present for Gregor Piatigorsky) Ernst Toch  

   Andante cantabile 
   Allegretto grazioso 
   Adagio, con espressione  

“Elegy for Cellist" - in memoriam, Gregor Piatigorsky (1979) - Grant Beglarian  

"Dead Cello" Four Grateful Dead Songs (2006) (premiered by J. Solow) Aaron Minsky  

  The Other One  
   Dark Star  
   Stella Blue 

Our programs are geared toward a general audience and are open to all, including Temple students, faculty, staff, alumni, neighbors, and friends. Registration is encouraged.

Contact Becca Fulop at with questions. 

Wednesday, February 21, 2024
12:00pm - 1:00pm
Charles Library Event Space
Main Campus
Registration has closed.