A leading composer at the time Italian Leonardo Leo (1694 - 1744) is now relatively unknown. In his extensive output mainly consisting of dozens of operas and sacred works his instrumental music has had a somewhat hidden existence.
Although he was trained as a cellist himself his six concertos are the only solo pieces he wrote for the cello. Until 1700 writing solo for this accompaniment instrument par excellence had been unusual anyway. Living in the then Kingdom of Naples showing itself in various guises the characteristics of the Neapolitan style apply to Leo’s work. In his cello concertos at the time new chords and treatment of dissonants occur.
The soloist in these recordings, Julius Berger, unearthed the manuscripts of Leo’s concertos himself in the library of S. Pietro a Maiella di Napoli. These expressive and interesting pieces are technically unusually demanding. But above anything else these concertos are most enjoyable to listen to. A nice addition to any library, a must-have for any cello aficionado.