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Haydn: The Last Three String Quartets

9 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 20, 1997
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$21.06
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$21.06 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 1 left in stock. Sold by DSV Super Center and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
  1. String Quartet in G Major, Hob. III: 81 (Op. 77, No. 1): I. Allegro moderato 6:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. String Quartet in G Major, Hob. III: 81 (Op. 77, No. 1): II. Adagio 5:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. String Quartet in G Major, Hob. III: 81 (Op. 77, No. 1): III. Menuetto. Presto 4:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. String Quartet in G Major, Hob. III: 81 (Op. 77, No. 1): IV. Finale. Presto 5:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. String Quartet in F Major, Hob. III:82 (Op. 77, No. 2): I. Allegro moderato 7:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. String Quartet in F Major, Hob. III:82 (Op. 77, No. 2): II. Menuetto. Presto, ma non troppo 4:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. III. Andante 6:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. String Quartet in F Major, Hob. III:82 (Op. 77, No. 2): IV. Finale. Vivace assai 6:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. String Quartet in D minor, Hob. III: 83 (Op. 103): I. Andante grazioso 5:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
10. II. Menuetto. Presto, ma non troppo 4:45$0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Quartettsatz "Der Greis" Hob. XXVc: 5 - Molto Adagio 2:56$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Performer: Vera Beths, Lucy van Dael, Jurgen Kussmaul, Anner Bylsma
  • Orchestra: L'Archibudelli
  • Composer: Joseph Haydn
  • Audio CD (May 20, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Classical
  • ASIN: B0000029U1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #314,708 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 16, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Well, this may be going a little far, but of course many of Haydn's late compositions point their way forward. The choral writing in his late oratorios and masses showed Beethoven the way in his two masses, especially the Missa Solemnis. And then Haydn's symphonies used novel devices that propelled all of High Classical symphonic writing: the use of motives, rather than whole melodies, that gave symphonic fast movements great concision and motoric thrust.
In the world of the string quartet, too, Haydn, not Mozart, is the model for Bethoven and Schubert--even Schumann. The first of the Op. 77 quartets tells you why. Though called a minuet still, the third movement is a genuine scherzo of Beethovenian stripe, and the last movement, with its perpetuum mobile codetta, sounds very much like the more Dionysiac passages in Beethoven's quartets. (The wonderful last movement of the of Op. 59, No. 3, comes to mind immediately.)
Here is a chance to examine this side of Haydn in two quartets that show him still at the height of his powers. Even the Op. 103, which Haydn couldn't complete because of failing health, has a strangely menacing-sounding minuet that takes us into a darker part of the soul than the Classical era almost ever explored.
These performances are very fine indeed, though note that they employ period instruments. If the Kodaly or Lindsay Quartet is your paradigm in Haydn, you may be disappointed by the lack of vibrato and the steelier tone that gut strings impart. That said, these are models of period performance practice, with a fleetness in the faster movements and a sober, dry-eyed approach to the more inward music that sounds just right for this late 18th-century music. The inclusion of the transcription of Haydn's song about growing old adds an especially apt note to the proceedings, given that Op. 103 was Haydn's farewell to music.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Tiny Mansion on December 5, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Listening to this recording profoundly deepened my appreciation and understanding of Haydn's accomplishment. Haydn developed the string quartet form and in these late works we hear it brought to perfection. Here is the foundation for Beethoven's great quartets. L'Achibudelli's "period" approach makes the structure of these pieces apparent, while still retaining the warmth and pathos of the music. The playing is extrordinary, the color and tempos are just right, and the recording quality is superb. If you have any interest in string quartets or Haydn (or both) this CD is essential.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 15, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Until I heard this disc I was perfectly happy with the Kodaly recording of the two opus 77 quartets, but the playing on this recording is revelatory. The phrasing, the management of dynamics, the beautiful sounds of the instruments and, above all, the way the four musicians listen to each each are absolutely 5 star. This has become my favorite Haydn quartet recording and my favorite L'Archibudelli recording. Quartet lovers should write to SONY and ask for more L'Archibudelli recordings of Haydn quartets and of Mozart's quartets #14-#19 dedicated to Haydn.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Reviewer on September 24, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
... to convince everyone that Haydn (1732-1809) sounds best on strings of Haydn's era, played with "historically informed" vivacity and transparency? No nervous, mawkish, pitch-disguising vibrato. Just so much vibrato as serves for ornamentation. Sprightly, dance-like rhythms and tempi. Farewell to blatant over-interpretation and ham-fisted dynamic melodrama! (Though I confess that I sneak into my musical closet once in a while to enjoys the Lindsays or Fitzwilliams playing Haydn.)

Well then, the persuasion is here to hear, on this magisterial performance of Haydn's last two completed quartets, Op.77, and his unfinished quartet Op 103, his swansong as a instrumental composer. This is Haydn as Beethoven's contemporary, not predecessor. The profound exploratory modulation through esoteric keys of the Op 77 #2 Allegro is as forward-looking as any music of the dawning 19th C. The restless resignation and mirthful melancholy of these pieces represents Haydn's expressive depth, to my ears, more affectively than anything his student Beethoven had written up to 1799, the year of Op. 77. This is the youthful innovative music of a most mature composer.

L'Archibudelli is cellist Anner Bylsma's ensemble through and through. It showcases his gorgeous tone and his interpretative insights. He is the wise old gnome, the veritable Obi Wan Kenobi, of Early Music, and every baroque cellist alive today reveres his pioneering instruction. Any hesitancy I may have expressed about violinists Vera Beths or Lucy van Dael, in reviews of other CDs, can be forgotten in listening to this recording; they both play gutsy guts here, and with superior tuning. Violist Jürgen Kussmaul belongs in this company; one's hearts melts when his mellifluous brocaded-tapestry timbre asserts itself in the ensemble.

As they say in Amsterdam, "Haydn is the Man!" ..... At least I think that's what they say ...
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Elihu D. Davison on September 22, 2007
Format: Audio CD
In the mid 1970's Columbia, on its Odyssey label, re-released its 1954 Library of Congress recordings of the Haydn Opus 76. The New York Times review of that re-release then opined that the Budapest String Quartet (of sainted memory) was the epitome of chamber music performance--the way string quartets ought to sound.

For those of us of a certain age the Budapest will always be the quartet against which all others may be compared. (Happily, their historic performances are now available on compact disc, re-released on such antiquarian labels as United Archives; but not, alas, from Amazon and not in the United States.)

Notwithstanding the diminished popular status of chamber music in general and string quartets in particular, other ensembles have formed and perform and record. Indeed, in most instances, the comparisons between former and newer groups are joyous. The Borodin, the Tokyo, the Alben Berg--and my contemporary favorite, the Guarneri (just to name a few)--are merely among the better known and excellent chamber groups. They are masters of the repertoire, understand tonality, balance and feel.

Which brings me to this recording of Haydn's Last Three String Quartets performed by L'Archibudelli. They are a young ensemble, dating only from the 1990's. They are ancient instrument devotees which I do not hold against them, though surely the classical composers whose works they perform recognized the technical limitations of the instruments for which they composed at the time. (Beethoven's own piano did not have a repeater, yet that was invented during his lifetime. Clearly, given the technical pyrotechnics required for his piano music, he must have composed with awareness of it.)

L'Archibudelli produces a fluid and precise tonality.
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