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Mansurian: String Quartets - Nos 1 and 2; Testament [CD]

5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 13.27 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Audio CD (19 Dec 2008)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: ECM New Series
  • ASIN: B000A2WF3I
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 280,515 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Allegretto
2. Agitato
3. Maestoso
4. Andante
5. Larghetto
6. Andante
7. Lento

Product Description

Product Description

Armenia's leading composer, Tigran Mansurian, receives his third recording from ECM - an album comprising his first two string quartets and the short piece Testament, all performed by the acclaimed Rosamunde Quartet.

Tigran Mansurian's first two string quartets - a third was completed in 1992 - were composed in 1983 and in 1984 respectively. Both are instrumental requiems, written in response to the deaths of two close friends. Sounds of grief and lamentation are sublimated by the simple beauty of Mansurian's extremely reduced tone language. Far from being demonstrative, the lack of complexity allows for a rare clarity and organic fluency. As in most of Mansurian's works, the rhythmical and harmonic designs, even the melodic shapes are closely related to the intonation of his native language, the musical style being characterized by an organic blend of Armenian and western European traditions. Testament is a five-minute Lento, written in 2004 as a tribute to ECM-founder/producer Manfred Eicher.

Recorded 2004

Andreas Reiner - (violin), Simon Fordham - (violin), Helmut Nicolai - (viola), Anja Lechner - (cello)

About the Artist

One of the most important composers of his country, Tigran Mansurian was born in 1939 in Beirut to Armenian parents but has lived in Armenia since 1947. In 1990 Mansurian became director of the Komitas State conservatory, recently resigning to concentrate exclusively on composition. His extensive oeuvre comprises orchestral, chamber and vocal works. In 2003 ECM released 'Hayren' which included pieces by Mansurian played by Kim Kashkashian and Robyn Schulkowsky, followed in 2004 by the 2-CD set 'Monodia' featuring Kim Kashkashian, Jan Garbarek, Leonidas Kavakos, the Hilliard Ensemble and the Munich Chamber Orchestra under Christoph Poppen.

The Munich-based Rosamunde Quartet gave its acclaimed debut at the Berlin Festwochen in 1992. Their ECM recordings of Haydn, Webern, Shostakovich and Silvestrov (leggiero, pesante) won unanimous praise. A critical and popular success is their continuing collaboration with Argentinean bandoneon virtuoso Dino Saluzzi, which began in 1998 with 'Kultrum'.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Armenian Composer String Quartets 1 Dec 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This CD contains both Mansurian's string quartets, played by the Rosamunde Quartett on the excellent ECM New Series label. The CD is well packaged with a comprehensive booklet about the quartets and about Mansurian himself. Having briefly met the composer on a recent visit to Armenia, I was very Keen to hear the quartets and was not disappointed. A very atmospheric preformance. I would recommend this strongly!
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth a listen 22 April 2008
By Jeffrey Huntington - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
These are haunting string quartets in an eclectic style mixing new and old, Armenian and Viennese elements. The result is a transparent texture, shifting in and out of tonality, rather deliberately paced, giving an impression of reverence, but with enough pungent dissonances to create some drama and motion. The performance by the Rosamunde Quartet is attractive. Stumbled across this guy purely by chance; now I want to hear the rest of his stuff.
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