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Shostakovich: String Quartets 3, 7 & 8 / Hagen Quartet


Release Date: 07/04/2006 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 000650502   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Dmitri Shostakovich
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hagen String Quartet
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 3 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

As with their earlier disc of Shostakovich quartets, the Hagen Quartet take nothing for granted in this repertory. Every movement seems to have been put under the interpretative microscope, bringing very different emotional and textural perspectives to these works than some of the approaches that are familiar, particularly from Russian chamber groups. The results are bound to divide opinion. For example, in opting to play the opening passage of the Eighth Quartet with the minimum of vibrato the Hagens may sound far more disengaged from music that conveys a mood of utter despair than the Borodin or St Petersburg Quartets. Yet the long-term impact of holding back both here and in the equivalent movement of the Seventh (where the final Read more reluctant resolution to a major chord is almost inaudible) actually serves to make the outbursts of anger in the second movement of the Eighth and the fugato of the Seventh sound all the more powerful. There are many other striking details: the unexpectedly slow glissandos in the second movement of No. 3 and the heavy thud of the repeated three-note patterns in the fourth movement of No. 8 spring to mind. As always, balance, intonation and ensemble are impeccable, and the Hagens demonstrate a masterly control of large-scale structure, nowhere more impressively than in the rise and fall of tension in the massive Finale of the Third. Although the highly charged St Petersburg Quartet on Hyperion still remains my first choice for modern recordings of these works, this warmly engineered release offers a highly stimulating and provocative alternative.

***** 5 out of 5 stars for performance, 5 out of 5 stars for sound *****

-- Erik Levi, BBC Music Magazine
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Works on This Recording

1.
Quartet for Strings no 3 in F major, Op. 73 by Dmitri Shostakovich
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hagen String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1946; USSR 
Date of Recording: 11/2005 
Venue:  University Hall, Salzburg, Austria 
Length: 30 Minutes 57 Secs. 
2.
Quartet for Strings no 7 in F sharp minor, Op. 108 by Dmitri Shostakovich
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hagen String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1960; USSR 
Date of Recording: 11/2005 
Venue:  University Hall, Salzburg, Austria 
Length: 11 Minutes 47 Secs. 
3.
Quartet for Strings no 8 in C minor, Op. 110 by Dmitri Shostakovich
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hagen String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1960; USSR 
Date of Recording: 11/2005 
Venue:  University Hall, Salzburg, Austria 
Length: 20 Minutes 21 Secs. 

Sound Samples

String Quartet No.3 in F major, Op.73: 1. Allegretto
String Quartet No.3 in F major, Op.73: 2. Moderato con moto
String Quartet No.3 in F major, Op.73: 3. Allegro non troppo
String Quartet No.3 in F major, Op.73: 4. Adagio
String Quartet No.3 in F major, Op.73: 5. Moderato
String Quartet No.7 in F sharp minor, Op.108: 1. Allegretto
String Quartet No.7 in F sharp minor, Op.108: 2. Lento
String Quartet No.7 in F sharp minor, Op.108: 3. Allegro
String Quartet No.7 in F sharp minor, Op.108: Allegretto
String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110: 1. Largo
String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110: 2. Allegro molto
String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110: 3. Allegretto
String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110: 4. Largo
String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110: 5. Largo

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 The Hagen Quartet Plays Shostakovich May 19, 2012 By Robert Resnikoff (Stamford, CT) See All My Reviews "The Hagen's interpretations of Shostakovich's music for strings is like a grapefruit at breakfast: tart, sweet, intense, cleansing and bursting with energy." Report Abuse
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