Saturday, January 25, 2014

Zoltan Kodály String Quartet No.1 and No.2 - Dante Quartet (2014)

Zoltán Kodály (16 December 1882 – 6 March 1967)
Performer : Dante Quartet
Label : Hyperion
Released: February 2014

Although Zoltan Kodaly is a big name in Hungarian Classical music scenes, his string quartets is less known in public. Zoltan wrote two full string quartets in the spirit of late Romantic or nationalistic movements. The only recording I ever listen to is from the Roth Quartet perhaps recorded in the '50s!

A professional notes on this CD :

After the success of the First String Quartet at Kodály’s first public concert as a composer, on 17 March 1910, he wrote his String Quartet No 2, Op 10, between 1916 and 1918, a period when hostilities cut him off from fieldwork. The piece was dedicated to the Waldbauer-Kerpely Quartet who had premiered its predecessor as well as giving the first Hungarian performance of the Debussy Quartet that had been its model. Debussy’s influence can still be heard within the pentatonic harmonies of the Second Quartet, though they take on even more magyar tones. Introspective at first, the opening Allegro contrasts quickfire dissonance with more elegiac passages. Again the music has a discursive quality, though a freer modality now reigns. Dance rhythms quietly try to assert themselves within the Andante, though they are stymied by more yearning tones. Finally that energy is unleashed with a pizzicato jolt at the beginning of the final movement and a helter-skelter exchange of thematic material. After a moment of unearthly pause, complete with destabilizing glissandos, Kodály ends with a wild coda.

from notes by Gavin Plumley © 2014

The Dante Quartet, winners of the BBC Music Magazine Award for their album of Franck and Fauré, respond to this music with dancing energy and folkloric simplicity.

Zoltan Kodaly String Quartet No.1 and No.2 - BUY IT HERE - AMAZON

1. String Quartet No 1 Op 2 [41'18]
I Andante poco rubato – Allegro [11'54]
II Lento assai, tranquillo [12'52]
III Presto [4'05]
IV Allegro [12'27]

2. Intermezzo for string trio - Zoltán Kodály & Simon Perry (5:10)

3. Gavotte for 3 violins & cello - Zoltán Kodály & Simon Perry (2:34)

4. String Quartet No 2 Op 10 [17'31]
I Allegro [6'00]
II Andante, quasi recit. [4'52]
III Allegro giocoso [6'39]