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Britten: String Quartets no 2 in C, etc / Sorrel Quartet

Album Summary

>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings in F major
>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings in D major
>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings no 2 in C major, Op. 36
Composer

Notes & Reviews:

The previous issue of Britten chamber works from the Sorrel Quartet was received with glowing praise. Classic CD wrote: "I await further releases by this talented and distinctive ensemble with excitement" (CHA 9469).

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
The Sorrel Quartet can claim a significant 'first' in its account of the recently resurrected F major Quartet from 1928. At 15 Britten was nothing if not precocious, and although the ideas in this substantial piece offer few hints of his mature style, he was already using the medium to excellent effect. Three years later, in the D major Quartet which has been a repertory item since Britten revised it in 1974, there are signs of a more individual voice; this is an attractive performance, well shaped and effectively characterised.

Nevertheless, it's on the interpretation of the Quartet No 2 that the disc must be judged. The Sorrel's naturalness and feeling for line are much in evidence. Tempos for the first movement are broader than most rivals, but they serve an approach which makes a virtue of reticence, and still manages to be quite gripping.

It has just about the best sound currently available (with The Maltings, Snape, providing an ideal acoustic), and the otherwise unrecorded F major Quartet adds strength to the recommendation of this noteworthy disc.



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Works Details

>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings in F major
  • Notes: Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Snape, Suffolk, England (05/28/1998-05/30/1998)
  • Running Time: 21 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1928

>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings in D major
  • Notes: Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Snape, Suffolk, England (05/28/1998-05/30/1998)
  • Running Time: 18 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1931

>Britten, Benjamin : Quartet for Strings no 2 in C major, Op. 36
  • Notes: Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Snape, Suffolk, England (05/28/1998-05/30/1998)
  • Running Time: 31 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1945