Brahms: String Quartet, Op. 67 & Piano Quintet, Op. 34 Hagen Quartett & Kirill Gerstein

Album info



Label: Myrios Classics

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Chamber Music

Artist: Hagen Quartett & Kirill Gerstein

Composer: Johannes Brahms (1833–1897)

Album including Album cover

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  • Johannes Brahms (1833 - 1897): String Quartet No. 3 in B-Flat Major, Op. 67:
  • 1Brahms: String Quartet No. 3 in B-Flat Major, Op. 67: I. Vivace10:25
  • 2Brahms: String Quartet No. 3 in B-Flat Major, Op. 67: II. Andante07:31
  • 3Brahms: String Quartet No. 3 in B-Flat Major, Op. 67: III. Agitato (Allegretto non troppo) - Trio - Coda08:39
  • 4Brahms: String Quartet No. 3 in B-Flat Major, Op. 67: IV. Poco allegretto con variazioni10:13
  • Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34:
  • 5Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34: I. Allegro non troppo16:01
  • 6Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34: II. Andante, un poco Adagio08:36
  • 7Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34: III. Scherzo07:52
  • 8Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34: IV. Finale. Poco sostenuto - Allegro non troppo - Presto, non troppo10:54
  • Total Runtime01:20:11

Info for Brahms: String Quartet, Op. 67 & Piano Quintet, Op. 34

This album marks a milestone in the extensive discography of the Hagen Quartett – myrios classics is honoured to present their first recording of a Brahms string quartet. The quartet op. 67 is paired with Brahms’ piano quintet op. 34. Here, the Hagen Quartett is joined by their regular collaborator, pianist Kirill Gerstein.

"This is technically flawless playing, and discipline and rigour also shape the interpretations. The plangent harmonies are kept firmly in order…The fine-boned vibrato is disciplined, occasional to the point of parsimony, evoking the orderly world of Haydn rather than late Romantic pathos…For this group, less is indeed more." (BBC Music Magazine)

"[Quartet] The Hagen players offer a colorful sonority, full and rich but also clear and detailed, and a balance that gives due prominence to the lower instruments, so that the polyphony of the music is well served. Intonation and ensemble are excellent...this release contains excellent and distinctive performances of two of Brahms’s great chamber works, recorded in very good sound, and deserves a strong recommendation." (Fanfare)

Hagen Quartett
Kirill Gerstein, piano

The Hagen Quartet
has been one of the world’s finest string quartets for many years and in 2021 celebrated its 40th anniversary.

Its most recent concert programmes have included Mozart’s ten great string quartets and Clarinet Quintet, the piano quintets of Shostakovich and Schumann, Schubert’s String Quintet and Jörg Widmann’s Clarinet Quintet. The Hagen Quartet’s concert series with guest artists at the Vienna Konzerthaus focussed particularly on Mozart’s quartets and quintets. The ensemble has toured to (among others) London, Brussels, Munich, Berlin, to the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, to Amsterdam, Wrocław, Barcelona, Madrid and Turin, to the Schubertiades in Hohenems and Schwarzenberg where they performed two concert programmes, to the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, to the Salzburg Festival and to the Lucerne Festival, as well as to the USA and Japan.

The Hagen Quartet’s spectacular career began in 1981 in Salzburg. In its early years the Quartet had great success in competitions, and signed an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon. Its decades-long collaboration with this label has resulted in numerous recordings, through which the ensemble has developed a vast repertoire and a unique profile.

Since 2011 the Hagen Quartet has worked with the record label myrios classics: its recordings of Brahms’s Clarinet Quintet with Jörg Widmann and Mozart’s string quartets received international acclaim from critics, and won prizes including the ECHO Klassik and the Diapason d’Or. In 2019 a recording of Brahms’s Third String Quartet and Piano Quintet with Kirill Gerstein followed.

The Hagen Quartet has been an honorary member of the Vienna Konzerthaus since 2012 and in 2019 won the Concertgebouw Prize for its charismatic artistic contribution to the organization over many years. The Quartet’s attractive and intelligently devised concert programmes cover repertoire from early epochs to Haydn to Kurtág, exploring the entire history of the string quartet. The Hagen Quartet has maintained and intensified its contacts with contemporary composers, both through performing existing repertoire and by giving premieres of new works. Working with artistic personalities such as György Kurtág and the late Nikolaus Harnoncourt has been as important to the Quartet as their joint appearances with fellow performers including Maurizio Pollini, Mitsuko Uchida, Krystian Zimerman, the late Heinrich Schiff, Jörg Widmann, Kirill Gerstein, Sol Gabetta, Gautier Capuçon and Igor Levit.

For many young string quartets, the Hagen Quartet is an important role model in terms of sound quality, stylistic diversity, ensemble playing and serious analysis of works and composers in their genre. As teachers and mentors at the Salzburg Mozarteum and the Hochschule für Musik in Basel, and in international masterclasses, the Quartet’s members take pride in passing on their vast experience to their younger colleagues.

The Hagen Quartet’s members perform on early Italian master instruments.

Kirill Gerstein
Gerstein’s heritage combines the traditions of Russian, American and Central European music-making with an insatiable curiosity. These qualities and the relationships that he has developed with orchestras, conductors, instrumentalists, singers and composers, have led him to explore a huge spectrum of repertoire both new and old. From Bach to Adès, Gerstein's playing is distinguished by its clarity of expression, discerning intelligence and virtuosity, and an energetic, imaginative musical presence that places him at the top of his profession.

Born in the former Soviet Union, Gerstein is an American citizen based in Berlin. His career is similarly international with world-wide performances ranging from concerts with the Chicago and Boston Orchestras, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, Royal Concertgebouw, Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics, London Symphony Orchestra and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, to recitals in London, Berlin, Vienna, Paris and New York. A long-time believer in the role of teaching, Kirill Gerstein is currently on the faculty of Kronberg Academy and Professor of Piano at Berlin’s Hanns Eisler Hochschule. Under the auspices of Kronberg Academy, his series of free and open online seminars entitled Kirill Gerstein invites is now into its fifth season, featuring conversations with leading musicians, artists, and thinkers. Guest speakers to date have included Ai Weiwei, Andreas Staier, Brad Melhdau, Thomas Adès, Iván Fischer, Alex Ross, Elizabeth Wilson, Simon & Gerard McBurney, Robert Levin, Reinhard Goebel, Simon Callow. Emma Smith, Deborah Borda, Rafael Viñoly, Sir Antonio Pappano and Samuel Jay Keyser.

Over the last year, Gerstein’s decade long relationship with Thomas Adès resulted in the release of two recordings: the world première of Adès’s Concerto for Piano and Orchestra written especially for Gerstein released by Deutsche Grammophon; and a compendium of Thomas Adès’s works for piano on myrios classics. Both discs garnered an impressive series of accolades which included a 2021 International Classical Music Award, a 2020 Gramophone Award and three GRAMMY Award nominations. In May 2021 in Amsterdam, Gerstein premièred another new concerto written especially for him, this time by the Austrian composer Thomas Larcher, co-commissioned by the Berlin Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic and Vienna Konzerthaus.

Kirill Gerstein’s latest release is a recording of Mozart Four-Hand Piano Sonatas with his mentor of 17-years, Ferenc Rados, for myrios classics. He first collaborated with the label in 2010 and, through the partnership has been able to realise many thoughtfully curated projects including Strauss’s Enoch Arden with the late Bruno Ganz (Wings of Desire; Downfall), recorded shortly before the actor’s death in February 2019; Busoni’s monumental Piano Concerto with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Sakari Oramo; and The Gershwin Moment with the St Louis Symphony, David Robertson, Gerstein’s jazz mentor Gary Burton and Storm Large. Gerstein has additionally recorded Scriabin with the Oslo Philharmonic and Vasily Petrenko for LAWO Classics; and Tchaikovsky with Semyon Bychkov and the Czech Philharmonic as part of The Tchaikovsky Project released by Decca Classics.

Born in 1979 in Voronezh, Russia, Kirill Gerstein attended one of the country’s special music schools for gifted children and taught himself to play jazz by listening to his parents’ record collection. Following a chance encounter with jazz legend Gary Burton in St. Petersburg when he was 14, he was invited as the youngest student to attend the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he studied jazz piano in tandem with his classical piano studies. At the age of 16, Gerstein decided to focus on classical music completing his undergraduate and graduate degrees with Solomon Mikowsky at New York’s Manhattan School of Music, followed by further studies with Dmitri Bashkirov in Madrid and Ferenc Rados in Budapest. Gerstein is the sixth recipient of the prestigious Gilmore Artist Award, First Prize winner at the 10th Arthur Rubinstein Competition and an Avery Fisher Career Grant holder. In May 2021, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Manhattan School of Music.

This album contains no booklet.

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