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The Endellion String Quartet play Beethoven [DVD] [Reino Unido]

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The Endellion String Quartet is renowned as one of the finest string quartets in the world. This DVD contains a performance of three Beethoven quartets - Opus 18, no. 6, String Quartet in B flat major, Opus 59, no.2 String Quartet in E minor Razumovsky & Opus 131, String Quartet in C sharp minor. The quartet scores used in these recordings were prepared by the notable Beethoven scholar and editor, Jonathan Del Mar in collaboration with the Endellion Quartet. ... these superb musicians respond to the dark undertow so characteristic of Beethoven's quartets as much as the gentle lyricism which invariably breaks through. The Observer (on Beethoven String Quartets Vol.2)

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4.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas Excellent introduction to their full set on CD - a favourite set of mine 23 de julio de 2012
Por I. Giles - Publicado en
The Endellion Quartet was formed in 1979 and is now the resident quartet at Cambridge University. They have become renowned world-wide for their abilities everywhere `setting the audience ablaze' (Daily Telegraph) and for playing with `poise, true intonation, excellent balanceand a beautiful tone' (Grove Dictionary).

All of this is true, not only of this current DVD release but also of their CD recording of the complete Beethoven quartets. Like me therefore, you may be tempted to view this issue as a sort of sampler before adding further to your collection. It is an ideal coupling for that purpose as it contains one quartet from each of the three periods of Beethoven's development - early, middle and late. All three are given fine, possibly revelatory, performances.

You will not be disappointed for indeed, they fulfil all the expectations created by the above quotes. This has been a more involving experience for me than either the much admired earlier Italian or Hungarian CD sets that I have previously owned.

The imaging is crisp and sympathetic with a tendency to over-exposure on facial or hand details in order to achieve correct exposure in the more important playing areas. This should not be worrisome. More of a problem is the use of extreme close-up of parts of players or their instruments that I personally found somewhat distracting. The sound is in excellent and immediate stereo and well up to current CD quality if not better.

I have found the Endellions to be an inspiring quartet and a freshening experience. It encouraged me to but their complete quartets on CD which I find to be the best overall that I have yet heard. This disc is therefore highly recommended as likely to be a freshening and illuminating experience and well-worth at least 4 stars on that basis.

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