Author Topic: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956  (Read 21732 times)

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Offline Herman

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2009, 09:25:55 PM »
It's a quantum leap from D887?

Nu, it comes from the same mind. It's from the same creative phase.

DavidW

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2009, 04:26:16 AM »
Snips, you are just going to have to listen and judge for yourself. :)

Offline Jay F

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #22 on: July 24, 2009, 02:40:13 PM »
I am now listening to the Melos Quartet with Rostopovich, which I like very much.

Offline Florestan

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2009, 11:49:19 PM »
I have the Melos Quartett / Mstislav Rostropovich version and I just love it.
"Visând, întrezărim prin doruri –
latente-n pulberi aurii –
păduri ce ar putea să fie
și niciodată nu vor fi."

--- Lucian Blaga

Offline Valentino

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #24 on: July 27, 2009, 12:02:24 AM »
Lindsays with Cummings is good (superb slow mvt.), but technically somewhat sloppy, yes.
L'archibudelli is super too.

But this is atomic and my absolute favourite:

http://www.amazon.com/Beethoven-Op-133-Schubert-String-Quintet/dp/B000025EIZ
We audiophiles don't really like music, but we sure love the sound it makes

snyprrr

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #25 on: January 22, 2010, 12:20:31 PM »
Well, I was flippin through the same tired stuff at the local library when, huh?, there it was. Great, I thought, now we can finally hear the Great Missing Link! More on performance later; I just want to give you my impressions of the music, since I have not warmed to Schubert particularly (sacre bleu!), and eeeveryone says this is the greatest piece of music ever written.

So, I'm walking to the car and thinking about how you all will "judge" my listening. Yea, mind you, I'm NOT thinking about the music, haha. Anyhow, from everything I've read about the "heavenly length" and all this otherwoldly placidity and melodic blah blah and, you know, all the tired words everyone uses to describe this piece. Well, you know I didn't really "get" D.887, and "y'all" said that D.956 was in a different world altogether than any Schubert, or anything else for that matter, so, I figured...

well, THIS is what I figured,... that D.956 was gonna be Bruckner's 10th Symphony for String Quintet (cue fanfare). I had totally pictured the slow mvmt. in my head as some glacial, placid lake music that lasted for 25mins. I was actually surprised when I looked and the piece was only 55mins, haha!

So, the first mvmt begins...

ok, within a couple of minutes I'm thinking, Wait a minute, those guys totally lied, this is just more Schuuubert!!! I hear the same "drama",... hey, this is Romantic Music! :o ok, so now I've got my "hate" on >:D, but,... then,... it,...js... keeps,...going,... and going,... with idea after idea, like a giant,...hmmm,... Pastoral Symphony, that's it!

And, so, there's still all this aching, yearning, typically Romantic minor key Schubert angst. I'm starting to think "Berg minus Berlioz", or "(Wolf + Berg) - Berlioz", or something like that  The longer the first mvmt goes on, the more organic the whole thing starts to feel, Sibelian. Do I hear Dvorak's "Gramdma Moses" tapestry-like musing? Even though I'm not "taking" to it right away, I start to think it will win me over by the end of the mvmt. Already Iknow I will like it better when I listen to it again.



Now, the second mvmt, the one that I thought was going to be Arvo Part, haha, no, seriously, I thought it would be some kind of Brucknerian type thing, and, at first I found myself cursing everyone's descriptive capabilities (if someone would have just said, "proto-Wolf/Berg,perfectly balanced contemplative/eruptive", I would would have been like, ok). Honestly, it seems that in the time it took me to type the last two paragraphs, the slow mvmt is over. Is that "heavenly length"? I think the slow mvmt could easily have been 10mins more 8). Seriously, i'm going to have to listen to this slow mvmt a lot, because I had so thoroughly pre-judged it. It's a totally different animal than I had thought. Anyhow, more later on the slow mvmt.

So far the Scherzo has made the biggest impact on me. The strange festiveness reminds me of LvB's Op.135's corresponding mvmt. And the mysterious central episode makes the whole piece for me. I feel like I'm hearing a little bit of Pettersson here, haha. I also seem to hear the final fulfillment of the experimental Haydn mineut, such as 33/3, 76/2, 54/2, and maybe especially 20/4 (I don't know, I might have Haydn on  the brain, haha).

The fourth mvmt does start of in Haydn/Bethoven upbeat bum-bum mode, and then, we're back in Enchanted Forest-land, with scurrying animals and singing birds. I almost feel like I'm hearing Debussy?... or John Williams?... is that a parallel minor I hear?

Well, as the piece begins it's final conclusion, I look back on the previous 50mins and say, Wow!, that was quite an experience. Not quite a journey, not quite a depiction,... but definitely a story. This piece seems to define PastoralDrammaticRomantic. It sounds like what i wish Dvorak sounded like. It sounds like Beethoven's truly last last work, had he had a late-late-late phase (I think so, because, consider, Op.135 does have an "autumnal" sound, no?, even though it brims with energy?).

Yes, so I agree, this piece does sort of stand out. It just didn't hit my ears as any String Quartet ever has. It's like my ears and my brain call "tell" that there's something "extra" going on here. This piece certainly has Symphonic Proportions and Vision. Hmm, I'm going to say that this has been a profound experience. Excellent!



Oh, so the vessels of this virgin listening were the Emerson and Rostropovich on DG (1992). Though I'd never heard the music, I can still tell that there are "other" ways of pulling this thing off. Honestly I can say that I have no criticism of the playing whatsoever. My personal taste would be for MORE MORE MORE of everything: more passion, more restraint, more just total totality of totalism. In other words, can this really be the bible performance? Even with my uncritical ear I can hear how this piece could probably be a completely different thing in other hands. I'm curious (I didn't re-read the Thread before I posted, but I will: the Hagen sound interesting (as usual)).



So, my Bottom Line is that schubert's Quintet is the "Bookend", the "Capstone", the "Lion King", the "Crown" of the Classico-Romantic Era. It is "like" as if Beethoven had entered one last, late phase and produced one giant swab of everythingness, and then expired.

Now I can see why it took 50 years to get to Busoni and Wolf and Scheonberg. Interesting.

I am now listening to Onslow's 1850 Quintet (remember, Schubert's wasn't introduced until around then), also for two cellos. Two cellos definitely lends a very noble, four square, almost Spanish flavor for me (though none of the music says so). Anyhow, so, this was my introduction to D.956. It puts a lottt of stuff in perspective, and, I'm really glad my preconceived notions were totally messed with. Quite a learning experience. Great!

Offline Cristofori

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #26 on: January 22, 2010, 03:36:44 PM »
I have only one. It is part of the eight-CD set from DG. (but it can also purchased as a single CD)
Emerson SQ w/ Rostropovich. I love what I have, though
An excellent choice, and I believe I know what the 8 disc set is you have! I hope to make it my own as well very soon!

Besides the single CD, It's also available on the mid price 3-disc DG "Trio" series which also includes all of Schubert's late String Quartets. A MUCH better deal.

On the historical performance side, the one recorded at the Prades Festival in the early 50's with Casals and crew is also an excellent reading.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2010, 04:22:53 PM by Cristofori »

Offline Cristofori

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #27 on: January 22, 2010, 03:46:25 PM »
ok, so someone tell me, please...

I had "heard" that late Schubert was the way to go...
ANY era of Schubert is the way to go in my opinion. After all, he was only 31 when he died!

Quote
so, then of course I realize that it's the Quintet everyone talking about...so,then... it's the real deal? Is it exactly what I envision it to be: impossibly beautiful melody undulating for an hour? It's a quantum leap from D887?
Impossibly? No.

Everything else? Yes!
« Last Edit: January 22, 2010, 04:20:27 PM by Cristofori »

Offline Herman

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #28 on: January 23, 2010, 12:03:32 AM »
You outdid yourself on this one, Snips. The total net weight of this post is zero, and it's the longest in the thread thus far.

To name one thing, you keep saying this could have been extra late period Beethoven, and, yes, there are Schubert compositions in which Beethoven's presence is felt. But in these late Schubert pieces you're listening to nothing but Schubert. That's what makes them so special.

But you wouldn't know that.

In general it can be said that the "Oh, X is just like Y with some Z thrown in" makes your posts so bizarre (together with your confusing use of confused hearsay).

snyprrr

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #29 on: January 23, 2010, 06:46:16 AM »
You outdid yourself on this one, Snips. The total net weight of this post is zero, and it's the longest in the thread thus far.

To name one thing, you keep saying this could have been extra late period Beethoven, and, yes, there are Schubert compositions in which Beethoven's presence is felt. But in these late Schubert pieces you're listening to nothing but Schubert. That's what makes them so special.

But you wouldn't know that.

In general it can be said that the "Oh, X is just like Y with some Z thrown in" makes your posts so bizarre (together with your confusing use of confused hearsay).


I knew when I saw your name i was in trouble ;D!haha

Offline cosmicj

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #30 on: May 29, 2010, 09:27:39 AM »
I recently got the 1952 Casals CD of this wonderful piece and have decided it's an outre 4th version for the Schubert lover.  Not that the performance isn't wonderful - that accelerando they take into  the first mvt recap is a brilliant inspiration, and something I had never heard before (to take one example) - but the sound is too rough for regular consumption.  (I actually don't have that problem with other Casals performances from that time period - his late LvB Cello Sonatas CD is my reference recording for those pieces, so this problem is worse with this quintet.) 

Anyone know that old recording by the Vienna Philharmonic Quartet, which I had on LP and always thought was wonderful?  As far as I know, it's never been re-issued on CD.  I left my LP on the side of the road ten years ago when I finally stopped insisting that CDs really weren't better than vinyl and simply gave up.  Sad.


Thanks for the very worthwhile thread, everyone.

Offline The new erato

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #31 on: May 29, 2010, 09:38:13 AM »
It's not his one (on Preiser)?

Badura-Skoda (Paul), Hermann (Josef), Kamper (Anton), Kwarda (Franz), Oehlberger (Karl)

Vienna Konzerthaus Quartet

Offline cosmicj

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #32 on: May 29, 2010, 09:44:29 AM »
erato - it just might be.  Hard for me to check :(

Offline ajlee

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2011, 06:01:54 PM »
I heard that this is one of Schubert's most profound works and am really looking forward to hearing it.

But being a great work as it is, there are thousands of recordings of it. Some agreed classics seem to be Berg/Schiff, Emerson/Rostropovich, and Melos/Rostropovich.

Which one (not necessarily one of the above)---performance quality, sound quality, availability, and price considered---do you think is a good one to start for a newbie (me)?

Offline Holden

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2011, 07:24:49 PM »



or



I prefer the HSQ but it is in mono.
Cheers

Holden

Offline dirkronk

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2011, 08:16:33 PM »
Not sure I can improve on Holden's suggestions: they'd be my first recommendations too.
I do also own versions by the Hungarian Quartet (EMI), Starker and associates (Delos), and two featuring Yo-Yo Ma...one with the Cleveland Quartet (Sony) and another with a glitz line-up of Isaac Stern, Jaime Laredo, Lin, and Robinson (CBS/Sony...VERY recent acquisition, haven't evaluated this one at all yet).

My first choice would probably be the Hollywood, age notwithstanding. It is classic and gorgeously played. Next would be either the Casals which scores in the gutsy-wonder-tons-of-character-definitely-special department even with not-great sonics or the Ma/Cleveland which is a good bit more modern as a recording, really nicely played and more sweet-toned overall (possibly a safer bet as a second pick...even my wife thinks it's beautiful). I haven't really listened to the others enough to characterize the performances well for you, just enough to know that they don't displace the top three picks.

Maybe another poster will make up for my deficit. Good luck finding a version you love.

Dirk

PaulSC

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2011, 09:46:01 PM »
Yet another vote for the Hollywood 4tet disc. But in case you want a modern recording with first-rate sound, there are lots of choices I'd stand behind: ABQ with Schiff, Miro with Haimovitz, and -- leading this category -- the Raphael Ensemble.




Offline Daverz

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #37 on: January 19, 2011, 01:16:03 AM »
I'll give a darkhorse recommendation:

http://www.mdt.co.uk/MDTSite/product//CRD3318.htm

« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 09:57:20 PM by Daverz »

Offline Verena

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #38 on: January 19, 2011, 02:38:06 AM »
I heard that this is one of Schubert's most profound works and am really looking forward to hearing it.

But being a great work as it is, there are thousands of recordings of it. Some agreed classics seem to be Berg/Schiff, Emerson/Rostropovich, and Melos/Rostropovich.

Which one (not necessarily one of the above)---performance quality, sound quality, availability, and price considered---do you think is a good one to start for a newbie (me)?

Certainly not the Melos-Rostropovich. One of my least preferred versions, and I have listened to many recordings, since the Quintet is perhaps my favorite piece of music .. The others you mentioned get my recommendations, Emerson-Rostropovich in particular was a favorite of mine for a long time. There are some who find it a bit superficial, however (not me). The Casals recording mentioned in this thread is great as far as the interpretation is concerned, but sound quality is not ideal, given its age. Hagen/Schiff is very good, too, though the slow movement is a little too fast for my taste  ::) Another favorite is the Petersen Quartet with Sanderling, and the one with Kagan, Gutman et al. on Live Classics. But the latter might be difficult to get and the sound quality might not be up to your standards (for me it is completely OK; it is a live recording).

Offline dirkronk

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Re: Schubert: String Quintet in C major, D. 956
« Reply #39 on: January 19, 2011, 10:32:05 AM »
It's HIP and it's absolutely great:




The cobbling together of old thread with new made me remember that Que's advocacy sent me out to acquire this one a while back. Listening to it now. There are definitely interesting things here and it quickly moves up the ranks, but...BUT...I'm not ready to substitute this one in any of the top two or three slots. Not quite yet anyway. I'll let you know later if I've fallen more totally under its spell.
 ;D

Dirk
« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 10:34:04 AM by dirkronk »