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Fauré: String Quartet in E minor Op 121; Franck: String Quartet in D major M 9 / Dante Quartet

Album Summary

>Franck, César : Quartet for Strings in D major, M. 9
>Fauré, Gabriel : Quartet for Strings in E minor, Op. 121

Notes & Reviews:

Often cast as total opposites, Gabriel Faure and Cesar Franck in fact had much in common. Both cultivated what the French call "interiorite" ("intimacy" or "inwardness") and each man capped his career with a string quartet: beautiful final works which demonstrate a thorough maturity of spirit and talent. Franck's Quartet of 1889 boldly breaks new ground, notably in the complex first movement and in its discourse interrupted by sudden silences. The 1924 Quartet by Faure is almost retrograde in its use of modal harmonies.

'This is a wonderfully played pairing of perhaps the two greatest of all French string quartets ... It is a measure of the outstanding quality of the Dante Quartet that both works are projected as vividly and immediately as they are. There's such a passionate involvement about their playing, such belief in the music's outstanding qualities ... It's an outstanding disc' (The Guardian)

'The Dante Quartet's triumph is that it doesn't allow itself to fall into the trap of over-stressing the austerity of Fauré's language, but instead chooses to let his remarkable inventiveness and strength of spirit shine out. Franck's String Quartet in D is also performed with great depth of feeling and sensitivity' (Classic FM Magazine)

'No dithering with the Dante Quartet in their Hyperion debut: they plunge into whatever they play with passion, energy and communal spirit ... The Franck dazzles with its boisterous invention; the Fauré cools brows with its thoughtful restraint. To both the players bring the same expertise and vast colour range. And the recording's superb ... Don't hestitate' (The Times)

'This is a fascinating juxtaposition ... Sublime, yet undervalued masterpieces. The Dante Quartet are superb advocates, especially in the Franck, where they are without peer among modern accounts' (BBC Music Magazine)

'This is a notably well-recorded disc; we're placed, it seems, right in the middle of the music-making, and from the opening bars of the Franck we feel the intensity of the Dante's commitment ... By turns vigorous and tender, and with impressive variety of expression ... Playing of great accomplishment' (Gramophone)

'[Franck] Played with the impassioned commitment that it demands and that it inspires in the excellent Dante Quartet, it is an imposing piece, not least its eloquent slow movement ... [Fauré] The Dante play it with conspicuous beauty and conviction' (Sunday Times)

'This latest disc of Franck and Fauré marks the beginning of a new relationship with Hyperion, which could not have begun on a better note' (Daily Telegraph)

'This new disc by the Dante Quartet leaves a strong impression ... This version of the Fauré quartet is one to which I shall happily return. There are moments of the most ravishing beauty in this ultra-refined score, and the Dante relish these most sensitively ... Hyperion's recording sounds extremely natural, and the disc is enhanced by fine notes from Roger Nichols' (International Record Review)

'Written just before his death in an accident in 1890, Franck's only string quartet pumps with nervous energy and heady hothouse emotions, brilliantly realised here by the Dante players' (The Independent)

'[Franck] The string quartet in D both looks back to the serious intent of Brahms and Beethoven, yet contains fresh (and youthful) language that could so easily take him into the languid modernism of Ravel and Debussy. This performance by the Dante Quartet captures that delicious ambivalence. Fauré's soft-spun E minor String Quartet makes a perfect partner work' (The Scotsman)

'The music is played with absolute commitment and intensity' (Manchester Evening News)


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Works Details

>César Franck (1822 - 1890) : Quartet for Strings in D major, M. 9
  • Notes: Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, England (12/01/2007-12/03/2007)
  • Running Time: 43 min. 37 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1889

>Gabriel Fauré (1845 - 1924) : Quartet for Strings in E minor, Op. 121
  • Notes: Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, England (12/01/2007-12/03/2007)
  • Running Time: 22 min. 59 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1923-1924