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Janacek: String Quartets / Melos String Quartet

Release Date: 04/08/2008 
Label:  Harmonia Mundi   Catalog #: 501380   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Leos Janácek
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Melos String Quartet Stuttgart
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 44 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

"For all their burning originality, Janácek’s two string quartets owe much to tradition. They are the peak of a development peculiar to the Czechs, beginning with Smetana’s programmatic first string quartet and which grew through a number of highly personal, sometimes experimental quartets by, among others, Dvorák and Novák. With Janácek’s two graphically emotional quartets, the first a personal reaction to Tolstoy’s novella, The Kreutzer Sonata, and the second a record of his love for a much younger woman, half measures in performance simply will not do. If the performers show any lack of commitment, the intensity of Janácek’s message is fatally diminished. The Melos Quartet gives expressive performances and its recording has an Read more astonishing clarity: the oscillations in the second violin part at the start of the First Quartet have a frightening immediacy. Its attention to phrasing, articulation and the many different tempi within movements is scrupulous. Indeed, as a record of the scores in all their myriad detail these performances are without doubt among the most impressive on record. The players bring real pathos to the slow movements of both quartets .... This is a performance to which I will return for the astonishing clarity of detail." -- Jan Smaczny, BBC Music Read less

Works on This Recording

Quartet for Strings no 1 "Kreutzer Sonata" by Leos Janácek
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Melos String Quartet Stuttgart
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1923; Brno, Czech Republic 
Length: 17 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Quartet for Strings no 2 "Intimate letters" by Leos Janácek
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Melos String Quartet Stuttgart
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1928; Brno, Czech Republic 
Length: 25 Minutes 46 Secs. 

Sound Samples

String Quartet No. 1 "Kreutzer Sonata": I. Adagio. Con moto
String Quartet No. 1 "Kreutzer Sonata": II. Con moto
String Quartet No. 1 "Kreutzer Sonata": III. Con moto. Vivo. Andante
String Quartet No. 1 "Kreutzer Sonata": IV. Con moto (Adagio). Più mosso
String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate Letters": I. Andante. Con moto. Allegro
String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate Letters": II. Adagio. Vivace
String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate Letters": III. Moderato. Andante. Adagio
String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate Letters": IV. Allegro. Andante. Adagio

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