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Intimate Letters / String Quartet 1 & 2

Leos Janacek , Alban Berg , Juilliard String Quartet Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Price: $18.99
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MP3 Music, 14 Songs, 1996 $9.99  
Audio CD, 1996 $18.99  

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

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. String Quartet No.1 after Leo N. Tolstoy's "The Kreutzer Sonata": I. Adagio 4:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. String Quartet No.1 after Leo N. Tolstoy's "The Kreutzer Sonata": II. Con moto 4:38$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. III. Con moto 4:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. String Quartet No.1 after Leo N. Tolstoy's "The Kreutzer Sonata": IV. Con moto (Adagio) 5:46$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate letters": I. Andante 6:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. String Quartet No. 2 "Intimate letters": II. Adagio 6:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. III. Moderato 5:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. IV. Allegro 8:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. I. Allegretto gioviale 3:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Lyric Suite (1925-6): II. Andante amoroso 6:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Lyric Suite (1925-6): III. Allegro misterioso - Trio estatico 3:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Lyric Suite (1925-6): IV. Adagio appassionato 6:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. V. Presto delirando - Tenebroso 5:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. VI. Largo desolato 6:13$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Performer: Juilliard String Quartet
  • Composer: Leos Janacek, Alban Berg
  • Audio CD (March 19, 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Classical
  • ASIN: B000002AY4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #168,809 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars dramatic, fabulous 20th century chamber music July 9, 2004
Format:Audio CD
One doesn't have to know the history of Janacek's String Quartet # 1 to understand its meaning; upon the first hearing one is struck by the light/dark, man/woman tension, the violin's nervous anxiety, the cello's dark rage. It is a fascinating, brilliant piece, inspired by Leo Tolstoy's story, "The Kreutzer Sonata", which of course was named after Beethoven's violin sonata.
Less dramatic and almost as good is Janacek's String Quartet # 2, written for Kamila Stosslova, and originally titled "Love Letters", later changed to "Intimate Letters" in order to be less obvious.
More abstract, but even more marvelous is Alban Berg's Lyric Suite; it is immensely expressive and romantic, with increasing desperation with each succeeding movement. There are moments of luminous beauty that take my breath away.
The Juilliard String Quartet (Robert Mann, violin 1 ~ Joel Smirnoff, violin 2 ~ Samuel Rhodes, viola ~ Joel Krosnick, cello) are superb. I can't imagine a better performance of these chamber music masterpieces.
The recordings were done in 1989 for the Janacek # 2, and 1995 for the Janacek # 1 and the Berg. The sound is excellent and total playing time is 77'10.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beware the sound... May 8, 2010
Format:Audio CD
I won't comment on the quality of the music, but I must disagree with the reviewer who praises the recorded sound on this disk. The Janacek quartets are strangled and boxy. The Berg is much better, and might alone be worth the price of the disk. If I remember correctly Gramophone agreed in its review.
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