FELIX WEINGARTNER (1863-1942): String Quartets, Vol. 1 - No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 24 and No. 3 in F, Op. 34.
Catalogue Number: 07K054
Reference: 777 251
Description: If you remember how chamelonic Weingartner has been in his symphonies - none stylistically sounding like another but each with its obvious influences - you'll be both delighted and not surprised to find what a splendid job he does channeling the Schubert of Death and the Maiden in both these works, especially his first quartet of 1898. It's impossible not to notice the similarities in the main theme of the first movement (which reappears almost throughout in various guises) and also not to notice with what skill and craft he keeps the Schubertian attitude in the glorious melody of the slow movement, the scherzo and its trio before plunging into a finale which adds late Beethoven to the mix. The Third dates from 1903, only three movements (although lasting 31 minutes), and based on notes of the first name of his new wife. Again, a mixture of heartwarming melody and a veiled uncertainty which is very Schubertian are the delightful characteristics of this work. Weingartner's symphonies are impressive and bear closer study; these quartets are, quite simply, endearing. Sarastro Quartet.