Brahms & Schönberg: String Quartet & Verklärte N

Album cover art for upc 723385304111
Label: Channel Classics
Catalog: CCSSA30411
Format: SACD / CD Hybrid

Amsterdam Sinfonietta; Candida Thompson, artistic leader

Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)
String Quartet opus 51 no. 1 in c minor (1873) version for string orchestra
Arnold Schönberg (1874-1951)
Verklärte Nacht opus 4 (1899/arr.1917/rev.1943) version for string orchestra

To illustrate the progressiveness of Brahms's harmonic style, Schönberg quoted his String Quartet opus 51 in C minor, arguing that Brahms's 'developing variation technique' and phrase structure were among the essential materials of Verklärte Nacht.
The Amsterdam Sinfonietta performs the original version of this string quartet, with the addition of a bass part created by the bass player and arranger Marijn van Prooijen.
In 1899, Arnold Schönberg wrote within three weeks the string sextet entitled Verklärte Nacht. It was inspired by Richard Dehmel's poem of the same name from Weib und Welt, a volume of poetry that caused great controversy at the time because of the sexual nature of its subject matter. Arnold Schönberg arranged the string sextet for string orchestra in 1917 on the request of the Viennese publisher Universal Edition, and only then did the work become widely known. The composer corrected the orchestral score in 1943, adapting dynamics and tempos to increase the transparency of his arrangement. This is the version used by Amsterdam Sinfonietta in the present recording.
Amsterdam Sinfonietta occupies a unique position on the Dutch music scene as professional string orchestra. It is regularly invited to perform in concert halls throughout the world as one of the very few large-scale string ensembles on the international scene.
The ensemble consists of 23 chamber musicians and its repertoire covers a variety of styles, ex tend ing from the Baroque repertoire to contemporary works. What sets Amsterdam Sinfonietta apart from the 'regular' chamber orchestras is the top priority it gives to a 'chamber music mentality'.

Candida Thompson was appointed Amsterdam Sinfonietta's artistic director and lead violin in the summer of 2003. Under her leadership, the ensemble concentrated even more on a glistening presentation of finely balanced programmes.
Candida Thompson's musical approach and leader ship guarantees energetic performances with great commitment of the musicians and a special relationship with the audience.

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