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American Classics - Druckman: String Quartets


Release Date: 04/18/2006 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8559260   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Jacob DruckmanFrancis Thorne
Performer:  Lois MartinCarol ZeavinCurtis MacomberFred Sherry,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Group for Contemporary Music String Quartet
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 7 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Like his orchestral work, Jacob Druckman's chamber music is notable for its bold physicality and vivid atmosphere, qualities also on full display in the String Quartet No. 3 (1981) that opens this new Naxos disc. The first movement's abrupt dynamic shifts, sinister dark/light shadings, slithery runs, and persistent mewing portamentos suggest a musical game of cat and mouse. The more recent (1994) Dark Wind also follows this pattern, however a very different aesthetic informs Quartet No. 2 from Druckman's earlier (1966), purely atonal period. Anyone familiar with Elliott Carter's works in the genre will know what to expect here, although Druckman is less interested in extreme complexity than he is in rhythm and color (even if the latter is Read more simply varying shades of gray).

Reflections on the Nature of Water was composed for solo marimba. The six movements feature such titles as Crystalline, Fleet, and Relentless, and they are indeed varied by tempo and mood. But admittedly, the sound of atonal marimba begins to wear before long, and listeners are accordingly advised not to play this entire CD in one sitting. To its credit, the program features exceptional, virtuoso performances from the Group for Contemporary Music (featuring Druckman's son Daniel on marimba), as well as vivid recorded sound by Naxos. For the adventurous.

--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Quartet for Strings no 3 by Jacob Druckman
Performer:  Lois Martin (Viola), Carol Zeavin (Violin), Curtis Macomber (Violin),
Fred Sherry (Cello)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Group for Contemporary Music String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1981; USA 
Venue:  Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY 
Length: 27 Minutes 11 Secs. 
2.
Reflections on the Nature of Water by Jacob Druckman
Performer:  Daniel Druckman (Marimba)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Group for Contemporary Music String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1986; USA 
Date of Recording: 09/22/1996 
Venue:  Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY 
Length: 15 Minutes 17 Secs. 
3.
Dark Wind by Jacob Druckman
Performer:  Curtis Macomber (Violin), Fred Sherry (Cello)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Group for Contemporary Music String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1994; USA 
Venue:  Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY 
Length: 5 Minutes 46 Secs. 
Notes: Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY (03/31/1996 - 04/02/1996) 
4.
Quartet for Strings no 2 by Jacob Druckman
Performer:  Fred Sherry (Cello), Curtis Macomber (Violin), Lois Martin (Viola),
Carol Zeavin (Violin)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Group for Contemporary Music String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1966; USA 
Venue:  Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY 
Length: 18 Minutes 26 Secs. 
Notes: Recital Hall, SUNY, Purchase, NY (03/31/1996 - 04/02/1996) 

Sound Samples

String Quartet No. 3: I. Variations 1-3 - Marcia-ritornello - Scherzo I - Marcia-ritornello
String Quartet No. 3: II. Variations 4-6
String Quartet No. 3: III. Marcia-ritornello - Scherzo II - Variations 7-9
Reflections on the Nature of Water: I. Crystalline
Reflections on the Nature of Water: II. Fleet
Reflections on the Nature of Water: III. Tranquil
Reflections on the Nature of Water: IV. Gently swelling
Reflections on the Nature of Water: V. Profound
Reflections on the Nature of Water: VI. Relentless
Dark Wind
String Quartet No. 2

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