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Mexican Romantic Quartets

Album Summary

>Elias, Alfonso de : Quartet for Strings no 2
>Campa, Gustavo : Miniatures (3), for string quartet
>Lobato, Dominigo : Quartet for Strings in G major
>Carrasco, Alfredo : Quartet for Strings in E minor
Composers

Notes & Reviews:

European romanticism gets a Latin twist with the new Cuarteto Latinoamericano release from Sono Luminus. These elegant pieces, many of which have never been heard outside of Mexico, showcase all the lush sounds of the late romantics with a special passion that only comes from South of the border. Cuarteto Latinoamericano, formed in 1982, is known worldwide as the leading proponent of Latin American string quartet music. Their 6th volume of Villa-Lobos quartets was nominated for a Grammy in 2002.

American Record Guide
This is a phenomenal production of music that I am thrilled to start to know. The sound of Cuarteto LatinoAmericano is a sound of experience and tremendous maturity; they are not distracted by a thing, and this music is second nature to them. This is wonderful place to start expanding your collection of Latin American classical music.

Fanfare
The earliest work is Gustavo Campa's Three Miniatures, dating from 1889. These pieces consist of a Minuet, which makes piquant use of cello pizzicato in the accompaniment, a Gavotte, rather neatly worked out in the form of a canon, and a slightly longer Theme and Variations. Despite the titles, this is Classical-era music through a Romantic-era filter - think Grieg's Holberg Suite. Alfred Carrasco's quartet, written in 1944, is one of the two more modern works on the disc (comparatively speaking). Textures are sparer here; the opening Allegro and gentle Andante tranquillo contain many passages where only one or two instruments are playing. Carrasco hailed from Guadalajara, and the finale of his quartet recalls music of that area (birthplace of the raucous mariachis), without the composer ever abandoning his light touch. Lilting passages where the violins play in thirds are attractively tuneful and light-hearted.

Classical Lost and Found
Recorded at a farm in Virginia, USA, one might expect less than ideal results. Not! The sonics are terrific with the quartet spread across a relatively wide soundstage that suits their rich tone and romantic program. The acoustic is warm, and the string sound crystal clear but musical with no glare. This disc will delight audiophiles as well as chamber music fans.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Ayrshire Farm, Upperville, VA (02/16/2010-02/19/2010).



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Works Details

>Alfonso de Elías (1902 - 1984) : Quartet for Strings no 2
  • Notes: Ayrshire Farm, Upperville, VA (02/16/2010-02/19/2010)
  • Running Time: 31 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern

>Campa, Gustavo : Miniatures (3), for string quartet
  • Notes: Ayrshire Farm, Upperville, VA (02/16/2010-02/19/2010)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern

>Lobato, Dominigo : Quartet for Strings in G major
  • Notes: Ayrshire Farm, Upperville, VA (02/16/2010-02/19/2010)
  • Running Time: 16 min. 34 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern

>Carrasco, Alfredo : Quartet for Strings in E minor
  • Notes: Ayrshire Farm, Upperville, VA (02/16/2010-02/19/2010)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 54 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern