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Schubert: String Quintet; Schoenberg: Verklarte Nacht / Janine Jansen

Release Date: 04/30/2013 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 001831602   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Franz SchubertArnold Schoenberg
Performer:  Jens-Peter MaintzBoris BrovtsynJanine JansenAmihai Grosz,   ... 
Number of Discs: 1 
Length: 1 Hours 23 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Even though violinist Janine Jansen appears alone in the cover photo of this 2012 Decca release, and her name is featured in large letters, no one should mistake this album as a solo effort. The recordings of Franz Schubert's String Quintet in C major and Arnold Schoenberg's sextet Verklärte Nacht are ensemble performances, and the musicians who play with Jansen form an artistic bond that seems utterly at odds with the star-oriented artwork. Jansen is certainly behind the choice of works, because they were programmed on her critically praised concert at Wigmore Hall. But beyond Decca's marketing decision emphasizing Jansen as the main performer, equal attention should be given to her colleagues, violinist Boris Brovtsyn, violists Read more Amichai Grosz and Maxim Rysanov, and cellists Torleif Thedéen and Jens Peter Maintz, who are all comparable in technical skill and expressive abilities. The performance of Verklärte Nacht is impassioned and dark, and the richness of the lower strings contributes greatly to the nocturnal atmosphere of the piece. However, this is also a dynamic work, and Schoenberg's nearly orchestral counterpoint gives intense activity to all six players, with no single part standing out. Schubert's quintet is a trickier piece to get right, because the writing is exposed and transparent in virtually every area of the piece, so no one can get away with inferior playing. On balance, the Schoenberg shows the musicians as a cohesive team that can forge ahead, confronting dense textures and complex harmonies with a forward impetus that makes sense of the tone poem's turbulent emotional imagery, while the Schubert gives the musicians an opportunity to achieve sublime expressions of beauty and transcendence through their control and cooperation. Decca's sound is quite close-up, so practically everything is audible, including the breathing.

– Blair Sanderson, All Music Guide Read less

Works on This Recording

Quintet for Strings in C major, Op. 163/D 956 by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Jens-Peter Maintz (Cello), Boris Brovtsyn (Violin), Janine Jansen (Violin),
Amihai Grosz (Viola), Torleif Thedéen (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1828; Vienna, Austria 
Verklärte Nacht for String Sextet, Op. 4 by Arnold Schoenberg
Performer:  Torleif Thedéen (Cello), Amihai Grosz (Viola), Janine Jansen (Violin),
Boris Brovtsyn (Violin), Maxim Rysanov (Viola), Jens-Peter Maintz (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1899; Vienna, Austria 

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