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Felix Mendelssohn - Mendelssohn: Op. 44, Nos. 1, 2

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Mendelssohn: Op. 44, Nos. 1, 2

Cecilia String Quartet

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This release by Toronto's Cecilia String Quartet is part of a general reevaluation of Felix Mendelssohn's music, one that seeks to strip away Victorian accretions of fragile neurasthenia and give the music a more Beethovenian mood. The argument works well in respect to the pair of Op. 44 string quartets, among Mendelssohn's most compact and intense works, and the Cecilia players put it strongly here. You will certainly sit up and take notice at the brilliant, slashing opening of the String Quartet in D major, Op. 44, No. 1, and the energy level remains high through the minuet (a scherzo in the second quartet) and the not-very-slow slow movements. The finales have an almost symphonic energy. Really the high point is the opening movement of the String Quartet in E minor, Op. 44, No. 2, where the Cecilia keeps up with the contrapuntal density that really does approach that of Beethoven's String Quartet in E minor, Op. 59, No. 2; here the quartet plays passionately and really do seem to find a layer of Mendelssohn's personality that has been obscured. They are not well served by Analekta's engineers, who choose a hard church acoustic that distracts from what the players are trying to do. This is not your father's Mendelssohn, nor indeed Mendelssohn for everybody, but it makes a forceful and worthy claim on your attention.
© TiVo

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Mendelssohn: Op. 44, Nos. 1, 2

Felix Mendelssohn

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1
String Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1: I. Molto allegro vivace
00:09:38

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

2
String Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1: II. Menuetto. Un poco allegretto
00:05:14

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

3
String Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1: III. Andante espressivo ma con moto
00:05:23

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

4
String Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1: IV. Presto con brio
00:07:23

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

5
String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 44, No. 2: I. Allegro assai appassionato
00:07:41

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

6
String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 44, No. 2: II. Scherzo. Allegro di molto
00:04:00

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

7
String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 44, No. 2: III. Andante
00:05:44

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

8
String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 44, No. 2: IV. Presto agitato
00:07:15

Felix Mendelssohn, Composer - Cecilia String Quartet, Ensemble, MainArtist

(C) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution) (P) 2015 Groupe Analekta (Distribution)

Album Description

This release by Toronto's Cecilia String Quartet is part of a general reevaluation of Felix Mendelssohn's music, one that seeks to strip away Victorian accretions of fragile neurasthenia and give the music a more Beethovenian mood. The argument works well in respect to the pair of Op. 44 string quartets, among Mendelssohn's most compact and intense works, and the Cecilia players put it strongly here. You will certainly sit up and take notice at the brilliant, slashing opening of the String Quartet in D major, Op. 44, No. 1, and the energy level remains high through the minuet (a scherzo in the second quartet) and the not-very-slow slow movements. The finales have an almost symphonic energy. Really the high point is the opening movement of the String Quartet in E minor, Op. 44, No. 2, where the Cecilia keeps up with the contrapuntal density that really does approach that of Beethoven's String Quartet in E minor, Op. 59, No. 2; here the quartet plays passionately and really do seem to find a layer of Mendelssohn's personality that has been obscured. They are not well served by Analekta's engineers, who choose a hard church acoustic that distracts from what the players are trying to do. This is not your father's Mendelssohn, nor indeed Mendelssohn for everybody, but it makes a forceful and worthy claim on your attention.
© TiVo

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