The celebrated recording of the Complete Beethoven String Quartets with the Quartetto di Cremona is now once again available. This edition makes available all the composer’s string quartets, alongside his String Quintet No. 29 (the only original work by Beethoven with this scoring), in the highest quality. “…such warm playing; such perfection… what a glory this is.” (The Herald) “The Cremona’s Beethoven project hurtles towards an exciting climax.” (The Strad) During the past eighteen years the Quartetto di Cremona has matured into a string quartet of international renown and has acquired an excellent national and international reputation. Having for many years performed at the great international halls, it is often considered as theRead more successor to the famous Quartetto Italiano. The musical style of the Quartetto di Cremona is marked by a fruitful tension between Italian and German-Austrian influences. Following their academic studies the players continued their training with Piero Farulli of the Quartetto Italiano. He strongly favored intuitive playing and a fervent, emotional, romantic, and “Italian” approach to music. Afterwards the musicians pursued their studies with Hatto Beyerle of the Alban Berg Quartet. He represented a clear, classical “German-Austrian” style. Both teachers significantly influenced the quartet, and the players naturally combine both poles, mixing enthusiasm with a sense of musical architecture.
Excerpts of reviews from some of the previously released volumes making up this set:
The ensemble's ongoing cycle has particularly impressed with its visceral excitement and pulsating energy. They demonstrate consummate mastery of soft mysterious playing, experienced here to best advantage in the unexpectedly veiled sounds they conjure up.
I particularly like the way they combine early, middle, and late Beethoven: it sets up fascinating tensions and counterpoints. Their opening of the Grosse Fuge is a reminder that this is one of the greatest of all gauntlet-throwing-down gestures in music. It's immensely ballsy playing, sweaty, almost anarchic.
fineAugust 11, 2018By Andrew Stern stern (Berkeley, CA)See All My Reviews"i have the old budapest , tackas and others ...these sound fine and are very lively"Report Abuse
The precision of ideasJuly 12, 2018By Dean Frey See All My Reviews"I've been keeping an ear on Audite's complete Beethoven String Quartets series with the Quartetto di Cremona as they've been released since the recordings began in 2012, though I missed a few along the way. Now with this release of the complete quartets on 8 CDs I can take a long close look at the well-received series from this fine group, who hail from the city of the great stringed instrument-makers. These are elegant, controlled performances, though without the final burnished sheen of the Amadeus or Alban Berg Quartets. "Without minute neatness of execution," William Blake once said, "the sublime cannot exist! Grandeur of ideas is founded on precision of ideas." The "final minute neatness" is not here, or at least not all the time, though that neatness would in an case wear a bit thin through a full nine hours of music. The string quartets of Beethoven go on a meandering voyage through his own messy life, from his early days nearly to his death. This music, which began in the candle-lit salons of the Ancien Régime, emerges in the worlds of fashion and celebrity that made him a household name throughout Europe, and comes to an end in the squalor, regret and frustration of his final years. It's all too real to have the same Platonic existence of the music of Bach, though that doesn't make it any less grand, or sublime, in the Blakean sense. The Cremona musicians connect with this real-life Beethoven, his folk-song references, musical jokes and sentimental tags. And yet they're still able to bring a nearly full account of the soaring genius of the late quartets. Consider the Quartetto di Cremona a reliable guide to one of the greatest of all musical journeys."Report Abuse