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Quatuor Ruggieri – George Onslow: Quatuors a cordes (Op.8 & Op.10) (2015)

Artist: Quatuor Ruggieri
Title Of Album: George Onslow: Quatuors a cordes (Op.8 & Op.10)
Year Of Release: 2015
Label (Catalog#): Aparte [AP105]
Genre: Classical, Chamber Music
Quality: Mp3
Bitrate: CBR 320 kbps
Time: 62:19 min
Full Size: 158 mb

String Quartet in C minor, Op. 8 No.1
01. Largo / Allegro agitato 7:51
02. Adagio 5:55
03. Minuetto allegretto 2:30
04. Finale presto 3:45

String Quartet in E flat major, Op. 10 No.3
05. Largo / Allegro con brio 5:51
06. Andantino sostenuto 7:14
07. Minuetto allegro (air de danse des montagnes d’Auvergne) 3:15
08. Allegro vivace 5:37

String Quartet in A major, Op. 8 No.3
09. Allegro 8:06
10. Andante non troppo lento 3:55
11. Minuetto allegro 3:30
12. Finale vivace 4:43

Gilone Gaubert Jacques, violin
Grattard Charlotte, violin
Delphine Grimbert, viola
Emmanuel Jacques, cello

Quatuor Ruggieri recorded more George Onslow string quartets. Having previously recorded three string quartets, they added three more on this CD. This time they recorded Opus 8 no.1 and no.3. The first quartet in Opus 8 already exposed to us by the Mandelring Quartet, yet no.3 in A major is likely a first recording of this. In the third quartet is Op.10 No.3 in E flat major. This make it that more George Onslow’s earlier period string quartets are being available for public now.

Nicknamed ‘France’s Beethoven’, french composer of English descent George Onslow, whose life (1784-1853) spanned the First Empire and the Restoration, popularized chamber music in France where hitherto it had been paid little attention. His wealth, position and personal tastes allowed him to pursue a path unfamiliar to most of his French contemporaries, one that was closer to that of German romantic composers. A contemporary of Berlioz and Paganini,

Onslow used his influence to foster a musical genre that didn’t see its first performance in Paris until 1814 with the creation of a concert society by his close friend Baillot, the violinist. Among the many hundreds of works he wrote, his string quartets stand out for their originality and unique spirit of invention at times almost visionary but never less than breathtaking. From his earliest quartets (Opus 8, 9 and 10) on, Onslow displayed his powers of innovation both in subject and form, applying a particularly French style to the music and establishing it alongside the work of Mozart and Beethoven.

By contrast, the virtuosity of Onslow’s work was distinctly Parisian in nature
and brought an extra and spectacular dimension to its character. This recording by the Quatuor Ruggieri bring out both the intelligence and Parisian charm of these unjustly neglected works.

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