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Arnold: String Quartets no 1 & 2, etc / Maggini Quartet

Album Summary

>Arnold, Malcolm : Quartet for Strings no 1, Op. 23
>Arnold, Malcolm : Quartet for Strings no 2, Op. 118
>Arnold, Malcolm : Phantasy, for string quartet ("Vita Abundans")
Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Although better known for his nine Symphonies and his film scores, Malcolm Arnold made a significant contribution to chamber music. His two string quartets form a fascinating contrast. The first comes early in Arnold's career, whereas the second was written more than thirty years later, after he had established himself as one of the most successful British composers of his generation, and had entered into an increasingly unsettled domestic life which gave his music a tragic and often bitter resonance.

"Sir Malcolm Arnold’s two String Quartets date from very different periods in his career, one early, written in 1949, the other later, written in 1975 at a period when his life had fallen apart and he was suffering serious tensions. The Maggini Quartet here add to their superb series of British quartets for Naxos with a disc that makes one marvel that these fine works are not far better known. Though they are technically demanding, both of them demonstrate Arnold’s gift for bringing out from whatever medium he is using sounds that are utterly original. Even in the very early Phantasy, which comes as a very welcome bonus, a piece written when he was still in his teens, he was using the medium with a confidence and originality which rightly won him a prize in the Cobbett competition, for which it was entered in 1941." -The Penguin Guide

"The Maggini Quartet again puts us in its debt for exploring the byways of the British string quartet with such dedication and insight. Its sense of ensemble is acute – listen to the panache with which it attacks the violent world of the First Quartet’s scherzo – while the players’ individual characters ensure constant interest in the slower passages." -The Daily Telegraph



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Works Details

>Arnold, Malcolm : Quartet for Strings no 1, Op. 23
  • Notes: Potton Hall, Westleton, Suffolk, England (12/14/2004-12/16/2004)
  • Running Time: 18 min. 3 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1949

>Arnold, Malcolm : Quartet for Strings no 2, Op. 118
  • Notes: Potton Hall, Westleton, Suffolk, England (12/14/2004-12/16/2004)
  • Running Time: 27 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1975

>Arnold, Malcolm : Phantasy, for string quartet ("Vita Abundans")
  • Notes: Potton Hall, Westleton, Suffolk, England (12/14/2004-12/16/2004)
  • Running Time: 10 min. 41 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1941