“It exerts the grip of a major work”

The first UK performance of Francisco Coll’s 2019 Violin Concerto has won rave reviews from critics following its premiere on 3 April at London’s Barbican Centre by the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by François-Xavier Roth. Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja, who premiered and recorded the piece last year to similar acclaim, was the soloist.

Kopatchinskaja has already performed Coll’s Four Iberian Miniatures, Hyperludes, Rizoma, LalulaLied, and the double concerto Les Plaisirs Illuminés (with Sol Gabetta). Coll described the concerto as "a portrait of Kopatchinskaja."

"Like every portrait, it includes traces of its creator alongside unique and personal reflections on its subject. One of the most exhilarating experiences of my creative life, it has expanded and, I hope, enhanced my perspectives as an artist.”

Reviews were effusive in their appraisal of performer and work. In the Times Rebecca Franks said the Concerto “dives straight into a place of ominous agitation.” “There’s no emotional let-up throughout the three movements”, she added “which put Kopatchinskaja through her virtuosic paces.”

“...an exploratory journey from headlong ferocity to a haunting central landscape of desolate, sometimes uneasy quiet...It exerts the grip of a major work”, Financial Times (Richard Fairman) 

“...as brilliantly original played live by [Kopatchinskaja] as it does on record…a showcase for Coll’s own freewheeling orchestral virtuosity, his tangled, teeming invention, ear for vivid sonorities, and sly references to earlier music.” The Guardian (Andrew Clements)