Part of the second wave in EMI's "Classic Archive" DVD series—which restores long-unseen performances by great classical musicians—this program showcases the intense art of Russian celli

Part of the second wave in EMI's "Classic Archive" DVD series—which restores long-unseen performances by great classical musicians—this program showcases the intense art of Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovich. In a black-and-white BBC broadcast from 1961, "Slava" performs Shostakovich's First Cello Concerto with the London Symphony Orchestra led by Charles Groves; with Okko Kamu and the Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra, he plays Prokofiev's Symphony-Concerto, in a French color TV film from 1970. The soloist amazes in both pieces; as a bonus, he also provides piano accompaniment for his wife, soprano Galina Vishnevskaya, in a pungent take on Mussorgsky's "Songs and Dances of Death." Wonderfully produced by the French firm Idéale Audience and Britain's IMG Artists, all of the "Classic Archive" DVDs include sample clips from the other titles in the series, as well as substantive booklets. The rest of the line ranges from Leopold Stokowski to Glenn Gould, with more on the way.—BB