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Brodsky Quartet|Golden Oldies – More Favourite Encores

Golden Oldies – More Favourite Encores

Brodsky Quartet, Laura van der Heijden, Julian Jacobsen

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The Golden Oldies title and 50th Birthday Celebration subtitle might lead one to expect a compilation of earlier recordings on this 2023 release by the Brodsky Quartet, which amazingly still has two of its original members. However, all of the recordings are newly made, and the arrangements, mostly by members of the quartet, are fresh ones. So these are short pieces of the encore type, but they succeed in avoiding a greatest-hits feel and conveying more of what a really good encore does, namely to suggest the hidden recesses and secrets of a repertory. The album features short works by composers the Brodsky Quartet has championed in the past, including Shostakovich, Debussy, and Beethoven, who makes an appearance with the familiar first movement of the Piano Sonata No. 14 in C sharp minor, Op. 27, No. 2 ("Moonlight"). That is not a piece one would think could be transferred effectively to the string quartet medium, but the arrangement by violist Paul Cassidy is elegant. That points to another strength of the release: the album highlights the Brodsky's independent programming streak, even in so conventional a medium as the encores album. Scott Joplin's tango Solace is another work that one would hardly think of for a project like this, and it is lovely. There is just one contemporary work, Isidora Žebeljan's An Intimate Letter from the Judean Desert, effectively placed at the end. This is not only a celebration for Brodsky Quartet fans but also a decent introduction to the group's work for those interested in this venerable British ensemble, and it landed on classical best-seller charts in the spring of 2023.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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Golden Oldies – More Favourite Encores

Brodsky Quartet

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1
Deuxième Arabesque from Deux Arabesques
00:04:01

Claude Debussy, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

2
Prelude X, BWV 855
00:02:52

Johann Sebastian Bach, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Laura van der Heijden, Cello, MainArtist

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

3
Trois mélodies, Op. 7: No. 1, Après un rêve, Op.7 No. 1 (Arr. for String Quartet by Paul Cassidy)
00:03:25

Gabriel Fauré, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Percy Grainger, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

4
Elegy
00:02:31

Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Jacqueline Thomas, Arranger - Dimitri Shostakovich, Composer

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

5
Polka
00:01:34

Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Jacqueline Thomas, Arranger - Dimitri Shostakovich, Composer

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

6
Prélude VI
00:04:05

Claude Debussy, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Laura van der Heijden, Cello, MainArtist

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

7
Les Cygnes
00:02:52

CAMILLE SAINT-SAENS, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Laura van der Heijden, Cello, MainArtist

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

8
Sabre Dance (Arr. for String Quartet by Andrew Haveron)
00:02:39

Aram Khachaturian, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Andrew Haveron, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

9
Adieu
00:02:40

Edward Elgar, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Julian Jacobsen, Piano, MainArtist

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

10
Première Arabesque from Deux Arabesques
00:05:15

Claude Debussy, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

11
Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-Sharp Minor, Op. 27 No. 2 "Moonlight": I. Adagio sostenuto (Arr. for String Quartet by Paul Cassidy)
00:06:43

Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Ludvig Van Beethoven, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

12
Gnossiennes, IES 24: I. Lent (Arr. for String Quartet by Krysia Osostowicz)
00:03:28

Erik Satie, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Krysia Osostowicz, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

13
Gnossienne No. 2
00:01:51

Erik Satie, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

14
Gnossienne No. 6
00:01:33

Erik Satie, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Krysia Osostowicz, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

15
Solace "A Mesican Serenade"
00:07:05

Scott Joplin, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Jacqueline Thomas, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

16
Prélude
00:02:16

Francis Poulenc, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Jacqueline Thomas, Arranger

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

17
Prélude IX
00:02:48

Claude Debussy, Composer - Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

18
El cant dels ocells
00:04:50

Paul Cassidy, Arranger - Pablo Casals, Composer - Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Laura van der Heijden, Cello, MainArtist

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

19
La Ronde des lutins, Op. 25: La ronde des lutins, Op. 25
00:05:27

Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Antonio Bazzini, Composer

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

20
An Intimate Letter from the Judean Desert
00:03:02

Brodsky Quartet, MainArtist, ChamberMusicEnsemble - Isidora Zebeljan, Composer

2023 Chandos Records Ltd. 2023 Chandos Records Ltd.

Album review

The Golden Oldies title and 50th Birthday Celebration subtitle might lead one to expect a compilation of earlier recordings on this 2023 release by the Brodsky Quartet, which amazingly still has two of its original members. However, all of the recordings are newly made, and the arrangements, mostly by members of the quartet, are fresh ones. So these are short pieces of the encore type, but they succeed in avoiding a greatest-hits feel and conveying more of what a really good encore does, namely to suggest the hidden recesses and secrets of a repertory. The album features short works by composers the Brodsky Quartet has championed in the past, including Shostakovich, Debussy, and Beethoven, who makes an appearance with the familiar first movement of the Piano Sonata No. 14 in C sharp minor, Op. 27, No. 2 ("Moonlight"). That is not a piece one would think could be transferred effectively to the string quartet medium, but the arrangement by violist Paul Cassidy is elegant. That points to another strength of the release: the album highlights the Brodsky's independent programming streak, even in so conventional a medium as the encores album. Scott Joplin's tango Solace is another work that one would hardly think of for a project like this, and it is lovely. There is just one contemporary work, Isidora Žebeljan's An Intimate Letter from the Judean Desert, effectively placed at the end. This is not only a celebration for Brodsky Quartet fans but also a decent introduction to the group's work for those interested in this venerable British ensemble, and it landed on classical best-seller charts in the spring of 2023.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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