Haydn and Schumann

Elias String Quartet

  • Total Time: 52 minutes
  • Cat. Number: WHLIVE0051

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  • Elias String Quartet
  • Sara Bitlloch violin
  • Donald Grant violin
  • Martin Saving viola
  • Marie Bitlloch cello

The Elias String Quartet returns to Wigmore Hall Live with a much anticipated disc of Haydn and Schumann, recorded live in concert in September 2010.

Formed at the Royal Northern College of Music in 1998, the ensemble quickly became established among the leading quartets performing internationally today, and is now supported by the prestigious Wigmore Hall Emerging Talent scheme. Widely praised for the vibrancy and intensity of its performances, the quartet has received particular critical acclaim for recent recordings, and in April 2010 its disc of Mendelssohn, Mozart and Schubert on the Wigmore Hall Live label received the BBC Music Magazine Newcomer Award.

Haydn String Quartet in E flat Op. 64 No. 6

Written in 1790, as Haydn began to drift from his noble patrons to follow a freelancing career, his Op. 64 quartets were completed in Vienna and published by Johann Tost, the former leader of his second violins at the Esterházy court. This, the sixth quartet of the set, received its London première later that year in Hanover Square. The witty theatricality of the work is portrayed by the Elias String Quartet with beautiful poise and intimacy, and the finely balanced interplay between each member of the ensemble allows the contrapuntal virtuosity to sound with great clarity.

Schumann String Quartet in A minor Op. 41 No. 1

Dedicated to Schumann's close friend Mendelssohn, and composed after a great deal of study of the quartets of Haydn and Beethoven, Schumann's String Quartet in A minor Op. 41 No. 1 stands as one of his finest contributions to the genre. The quartet was written at a time when Schumann began to distance himself from the technical limitations of the piano, and his expanded musical gestures are clearly evident throughout his work. The close musicianship clearly audible in the Elias's recording allows the ensemble to explore the work's emotional depth with great subtlety and refinement.

Track Listing

Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)

String Quartet in E flat major Op. 64 No. 6

Robert Schumann (1810-1856)

String Quartet in A minor Op. 41 No. 1

Donald Grant (b.1980)

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