Sunday, February 20, 2005

Bartok String Quartets

A concert will be beginning in a little over an hour. A famous string quartet is going to play the entire cycle of Bartok's six string quartets. I can't be there, so I'm listening to them being played on CD by The Juilliard String Quartet. It's their 1981 digital cycle, which if the reviewer in our local paper is to be believed, is not as good as their 1963 recording. I don't know enough about classical music to judge, but the '81 recording is not to be sneezed at.

Playing the entire cycle live, along with two intermissions will take about four hours. That's a lot of music.

I can't remember why I bought this 2 CD set. I may have read it mentioned in interviews with old jazz greats, because, you know, they did listen to other genres of music. I may have gotten it from a CD club. I don't remember. It's great music though. The visceral impact is staggering. It's also exhausting in its intensity. I usually have to take breaks if I'm listening, and I've never listened to both CDs in the same day. But hey, it's Sunday and it's cold and snowy outside.

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At 2:10 PM, Blogger Beautiful Belgian Babe said...

Nice post. Reminds me to sometimes just stop and listen to music for its own sake, as opposed to for background. My favorite orchestra piece is New World Symphony, by Antonin Dvorak. I also enjoyed your essay about parenting. It's interesting to read your perspective as someone who's further ahead in the journey than I am--I have a toddler.

At 7:37 PM, Blogger Harry said...

The funny thing is that I used to groan when reading about what people wrote about their kids. Now I kind of enjoy it. And I have read about your toddler. As for the music, I too, use it too much for background. It's good to stop and listen. The one thing I don't do though is bring it outside with me. I don't want to inflict my tastes on others because I hate it when other people do it to me.


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