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Thread: Beethoven String Quarets

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    Senior Member opus67's Avatar
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    Default Beethoven String Quarets

    If you were asked to recommend one set of Beethoven's string quartets (a set of recordings of all the quartets by one ensemble), which one would it be?
    Regards,
    Navneeth

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    Senior Member ChamberNut's Avatar
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    Navneeth,

    You already know my answer to this one! The Quartetto Italiano......you just can't go wrong there.

    However, I've also heard that the Alban Berg Quartet and Talich Quartet recordings are also considered top notch.

    My Quartetto Italiano set of Beethoven's String Quartets are my most listened to CD's, my prized possession of all of my classical music CD's. Every listen to them makes me discover even more so how beautiful the music really is.

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    Senior Member opus67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChamberNut View Post
    Navneeth,

    You already know my answer to this one! The Quartetto Italiano......you just can't go wrong there.
    hehe...yes, I knew that.
    Regards,
    Navneeth

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    Hi, ChamberNut!

    Quote Originally Posted by ChamberNut View Post
    Navneeth,

    You already know my answer to this one! The Quartetto Italiano......you just can't go wrong there.

    However, I've also heard that the Alban Berg Quartet and Talich Quartet recordings are also considered top notch.

    My Quartetto Italiano set of Beethoven's String Quartets are my most listened to CD's, my prized possession of all of my classical music CD's. Every listen to them makes me discover even more so how beautiful the music really is.
    Sorry, but I disagree totally.
    The Quartetto Italiano is only able to do one thing: play beautiful - as you said it.
    But the pure celebration of beauty doesn't satisfy the ambitions of Beethovens quartets.
    They have a broad spectrum of emotions and tone colour.
    In the Quatetto-Italiano-recording I miss the depth of emotion, the venture to "play against the human ear" (it's IMO necessary in the late quartets), the dionysiadic aspects,...

    I recommend recordings like the ones of the Emerson Quartet (DGG) or the Takacs Quartet (Decca).
    If these are too agressive and "wild" for you, try the Juilliard Quartet (Sony).
    Recently a good and very cheap recording of the Guarneri Quartet is available (Brilliant Classics), which I would recommend to someone who isn't familiar with string quartets at all and doesn't want to invest much.

    Regards,
    AVH.

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    Senior Member zlya's Avatar
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    Emerson Quartet. Such energy, and yet such taste.

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    Senior Member ChamberNut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amade Van Haydn View Post
    Hi, ChamberNut!

    Sorry, but I disagree totally.
    The Quartetto Italiano is only able to do one thing: play beautiful - as you said it.
    But the pure celebration of beauty doesn't satisfy the ambitions of Beethovens quartets.
    They have a broad spectrum of emotions and tone colour.
    In the Quatetto-Italiano-recording I miss the depth of emotion, the venture to "play against the human ear" (it's IMO necessary in the late quartets), the dionysiadic aspects,...

    I recommend recordings like the ones of the Emerson Quartet (DGG) or the Takacs Quartet (Decca).
    If these are too agressive and "wild" for you, try the Juilliard Quartet (Sony).
    Recently a good and very cheap recording of the Guarneri Quartet is available (Brilliant Classics), which I would recommend to someone who isn't familiar with string quartets at all and doesn't want to invest much.

    Regards,
    AVH.



    Mr Amade Van Haydn (by the way, cool moniker ),

    Now it is over to me to strongly disgree with you. Although I have not heard complete alternative recordings of the Beethoven quartets by other than Q.Italiano, I have heard several movement and single string quartets of various other artists, and I have yet to hear one that appealed to me more than the Italiano, and......especially in the late quartets and the Razumovsky quartets.

    Perhaps I am tone deaf and "color" blind.

    I will say I have the Emerson String Quartet recordings of Schumann's Piano Quartet and Piano Quintet, and Mendelssohn's Quartets and Octet, and they are superb! I'm also condering Emerson SQ when I will be ready to obtain Bartok's quartets.

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    Senior Member opus67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChamberNut View Post
    Mr Amade Van Haydn (by the way, cool moniker ),
    "Oh...," he said, as the significance of the username hit him.


    P.S.(He = opsu67)
    Regards,
    Navneeth

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    Senior Member World Violist's Avatar
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    I'm sorry for bringing this up, but--whatever happened to the Budapest!?
    You get a frog in your throat, you sound hoarse.

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    Junior Member JohnM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChamberNut View Post
    I've also heard that the Alban Berg Quartet and Talich Quartet recordings are also considered top notch.
    I can personally vouch for the Alban Berg set!

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    Senior Member Handel's Avatar
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    And people, how do you compare Beethoven's string quartets to his piano trios? Which are the better?

    Personnally, I like the mix of strings and piano. It meshes all well.
    "Handel understands effect better than any of us -- when he chooses, he strikes like a thunderbolt... though he often saunters, in the manner of his time, this is always something there."

    Mozart

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    Senior Member ChamberNut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Handel View Post
    And people, how do you compare Beethoven's string quartets to his piano trios? Which are the better?

    Personnally, I like the mix of strings and piano. It meshes all well.

    Glad you asked Handel They are top notch! But, I would not say they are better. I personally enjoy and listen to them as much as I do the string quartets. And I am with you Handel, I really enjoy the mix of strings and piano. For Piano Trios, I have the set with Beaux Arts Trio for Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart and Schubert. Yes, I love piano trios

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    Senior Member Handel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChamberNut View Post
    For Piano Trios, I have the set with Beaux Arts Trio for Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart and Schubert.
    Not Haydn?





















    "Handel understands effect better than any of us -- when he chooses, he strikes like a thunderbolt... though he often saunters, in the manner of his time, this is always something there."

    Mozart

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    Senior Member opus67's Avatar
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    And I second Handel and ChamberNut. I like chamber music with a piano at the focus, too!
    Regards,
    Navneeth

    Want a piece of classical music identified? Post a link or upload a clip here. Someone might have an answer.


    A quick and gentle introduction to audio formats and compression

    2009: It's the International Year of Astronomy
    http://www.astronomy2009.org/

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    Quote Originally Posted by zlya View Post
    Emerson Quartet. Such energy, and yet such taste.
    I agree entirely! I have their album of the late quartets - just amazing.
    "Music is the one incorporeal entrance into the higher world of knowledge which comprehends mankind but which mankind cannot comprehend."
    -Ludwig van Beethoven

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    Opus 95 (!!)....and basically anything later

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