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Dvorak: Piano Quartet/ Quintet (Chandos: CHAN 10719) CD

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, CD, 30 Apr 2012
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Product details

  • Composer: Antonin Dvorak
  • Audio CD (30 April 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Chandos
  • ASIN: B007KWD6WA
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 71,973 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Piano Quintet No. 2 in A major, Op. 81 - Schubert Ensemble
  2. Piano Quartet No. 2 in E flat major, Op. 87 - Schubert Ensemble
  3. Songs My Mother Taught Me, Op. 55 No. 4 (i.e., No. 4 from Gypsy Songs, Op. 55) - Schubert Ensemble

Product description

Product Description

Founded in 1983, regularly giving more than sixty concerts a year, and having performed in over forty different countries, the Schubert Ensemble is firmly established as one of the worlds leading exponents of chamber music for piano and strings. The Ensemble here performs Piano Quintet No. 2, which is arguably one of Dvoáks greatest and most popular chamber pieces, thanks to its memorable melodies and sheer panache. The composer took great pride in his country, in his people, their character and cultural heritage, all of which is evident in this work. In the words of the late British Dvoák scholar John Clapham: [it] probably epitomizes more completely the genuine Dvoák style in most of its facets than any other work of his. Laughter and tears, sorrow and gaiety, are found side by side, as well as many moods that lie between these two extremes. All are presented with consummate mastery, they are decked in a wide range of instrumental colouring, and through the whole sweeps the life-blood of vital rhythm. Dvoák wrote his Piano Quartet No. 2 at the persistent request of his publisher Simrock in Berlin, who had long recognised the sales potential of the composers music. He was not wrong; the work went on to become one of Dvoáks most frequently played chamber works. Here, Dvoák revels in taking on both tranquil and stormy moods; the feeling of great joy present in the third movement pre-echoes the sunny disposition of his Symphony No. 8, which was to follow immediately after the Quartet. The seven songs which make up the cycle Gypsy Songs were written in 1880 to texts by the Czech poet Adolf Heyduk. The fourth, Songs My Mother Taught Me, is the best known internationally of all Dvoáks songs. The version heard here, for piano quartet, was arranged by the four core members of the Schubert Ensemble, and is a highly popular encore piece performed at many of its concerts.


On first listen, there is nothing radical about the Schubert's performance here. The folk-inspired accents have bite and tang, the broad melodies that offset them a handsome lustre. Listen closely, though, and a wealth of clever detailing emerges from this quartet and guest violinist Alexandra Wood. The tones chosen are understated, the articulation feathery, dry or dewy. This is Dvorák played not as a gifted naïf but as a sophisticate, subtle and assured. --Independent, 13/05/12

Oozing charm from every available duct. --IRR,June'12

As a whole these excellent performances lead a well-populated field. Performance ***** Recording ***** BBC MUSIC CHAMBER CHOICE --BBC Music Magazine, Aug'12

The Schubert Ensemble meet Dvorak on his terms; no mean feat given the previous dominance in this repertoire of home-grown musicians. --Gramophone, March'13

As a whole these excellent performances lead a well-populated field. Performance ***** Recording ***** BBC MUSIC CHAMBER CHOICE --BBC Music Magazine, Aug'12

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12 October 2012
Format: Audio CD
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1 November 2012
Format: Audio CD
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