A spikeless 'cello sits between his knees,
Of polished wood from era long ago;
Suspended in the Now by second Suite
Of J.S.Bach, so intricate the notes
His supple fingers play. Melodic line
Emerges from the complex chordal web,
A self-sufficient solo he recites,
In joy and triumph by the Spirit led.
Four strings now change in piccolo to five:
With subtle tones this instrument he bows
Suite 6, in resonance our ears delight –
Vibrating gut the heart's emotion grows.
The artists chart his movements; with the brush
They integrate this challenge, wholly trust.
Peter Horsfield 24/10/2013
Alex Rolton played the English Baroque cello for Suite No 2, and a recent copy of a Baroque Violoncello Piccolo for Suite No 6. These two cellos, and the original on which the piccolo is based, are part of the Royal Academy of Music's collection. Unlike the modern cello, Baroque cellos have no spike. They are gripped between the player's lower legs.
In 1970, or thereabouts, Peter's late father, Michael Horsfield, had the opportunity to sketch the celebrated cellist, Paul Tortellier. For those who heard the great man in concert the sketch below will quite possibly bring some very happy memories.
Music on Thursdays and Leatherhead Art Club are extremely grateful to Alex Rolton for allowing Art Club members to sketch him as he plays today.
We hope this will be the first of many opportunities for lovers of the arts to share such experiences in Leatherhead.
For more information about Leatherhead Art Club, please click on the logo.