When Rostropovich himself was dying many years ago, his family played him some of his recordings, for stimulus and consolation. One was his performance with Britten of Schubert's Arpeggione Sonata, wich had featured at their first recital in July, 1961. Ever since, any mention of Britten's name had brought a smile to his face with the words: "Ah, Benjik!" Although Rostropovich was by now unconscious, his daughter Olga says that, as the music played, a tear slid down his cheek. More than the many other works they performed together, it was the Arpeggione Sonata that captured the incredible fusion of their musical sensibilities. 

Ultra rare and very collectible duo Rostropovich-Britten LP. Very first made in UK on Decca SXL 6426 WB ED3 Black & Silver ffss Original Stereo Label (third label no grooved, but first for this recording), Matrix ZAL 9193-3Y / 9194-5Y, recorded in 1969 by Kenneth Wilkinson at the Maltings and pressed in Decca New Malden plant, Surrey, one of the last UK Decca valve labels. Program: Schubert-Sonata In A Minor For Arpeggione And Piano, D. 821, and at side 2, Bridge-Sonata For Cello And Piano. -Saulo Zucchello