Notes and Editorial Reviews
For its very first recording on Chandos, the Arcadia String Quartet presents what has been at the very heart of its musical career and influences: the complete string quartets by Bartók.
With the music of the Hungarian composer, the members of this Romanian ensemble, neighbours of his birthplace, have won such major careershaping competitions as Osaka, the Wigmore Hall, and Hamburg.
Bartók’s attachment to the string quartet – as to no other genre – was to the keystone of the Viennese tradition, but with the aim of moving the medium out of its native city a little, into the countryside of alternative tonalities and rhythms. The six mature works he wrote are being revealed here with all the singular
patterns, mixed modalities, bitterness, lamentations, and, at times, bright folk influences which they contain.
Whatever the inspirations, these players are alive to them, just as they are alert to the technical demands lurking around every corner. These Arcadians also find haunting desolation.
– BBC Music Magazine
If I was asked to recommend a Bartók cycle to a first-time listener intimidated by his spiky reputation, I’d send them straight to the Arcadia Quartet. Even for the aficionado, this spacious, big-hearted vision of Bartók as poet, dreamer, and humorist has something distinctive and beautiful to say.
– Gramophone Read less
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