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Janacek: Complete String Quartets / Mandelring

Album Summary

>Janácek, Leos : Quartet for Strings no 1 "Kreutzer Sonata"
>Janácek, Leos : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Listy duverne," "Intimate Letters"), JW 7/13

Notes & Reviews:

Both Janacek's string quartets, alongside works by Schoenberg, Berg and Zemlinsky, form the pinnacles of modern chamber music in the inter-war period.

Janácek composed the quartets in 1923 and 1928 respectively and gave them revealing sobriquets. 'Kreutzer Sonata' for the first quartet refers to a novella by Leo Tolstoy in which the emotional power of music is held responsible for a matrimonial drama. If this quartet was secretly addressed to Kamila Stösslová, the object of Janácek's adoration in his later life, then the sobriquet of the second quartet, 'Intimate Letters', refers rather openly to the same addressee. The composer reinforced this amorous subtext by using an instrument which has love in its name: "The whole thing will be held together by a special instrument", Janácek wrote, "it is called viola d'amour - viola of love." Janácek was fascinated by the silvery sound of the richly decorated instrument in the viola register. For practical reasons he had to dispense with the viola d'amore and adapt the work for an ordinary viola but for this recording, Gunter Teuffel and the Mandelring Quartet have reconstructed the original setting, offering Janácek's second string quartet in both versions, for viola as well as viola d'amore.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Klingenmünster (12/16/2009-12/19/2009).


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Works Details

>Leos Janácek (Composer) (1854 - 1928) : Quartet for Strings no 1 "Kreutzer Sonata"
  • Notes: Klingenmünster (12/16/2009-12/19/2009)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1923

>Leos Janácek (Composer) (1854 - 1928) : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Listy duverné," "Intimate Letters"), JW 7/13
  • Notes: Klingenmünster (12/16/2009-12/19/2009)
  • Running Time: 47 min. 43 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1928