This page lists all recordings of String Quartet No. 2, Op. 15, by Alexander von Zemlinsky (1871-1942) on CD, SACD & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.
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20th-Century String Quartets: Debussy, Ravel, Toldra & Zemlinsky
This double album brings together two recordings from 2004 and 2006 in which the Cuarteto Casals opportunely demonstrated its virtuosity and the links between figures as different as Turina, Ravel, Debussy and Zemlinsky.
“Well loved quartets superbly performed, and imaginatively coupled” BBC Music Magazine, October 2012 *****
In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.
Zemlinsky: String Quartets Nos. 2 & 4
“the expressionistic Zemlinsky Quartet...play these scores with scorching insight.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2011 *****
“[No. 2's] flux of continuous variation on a single motto, without obvious repetition, asks a lot of any listener. More personal and fully achieved is No. 4...The shadow of Mahler remains here, and nothwithstanding elements of the burlesque and the sardonic, you feel that it's through his lyrical temperament that Zemlinsky most convincingly identifies himself.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2012
Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days.
Zemlinsky - Complete String Quartets
Alexander Zemlinsky (1871-1941) grew up in Vienna, and perhaps unsurprisingly was attracted to the music of Brahms rather than Wagner. The First Quartet dates from the same year and is a wonderfully Brahmsian work, with echoes of Dvorak in the delightful scherzo. The Second Quartet dates from a torrid time in Zemlinsky’s life, 1913/4. His passionate love affair with Alma Schindler was over, and she had left him for Gustav Mahler, and the premiere of his opera Die Traumgorge was cancelled in Vienna. By this time, and perhaps due to the stress and suffering he was enduring, his musical palate had moved way on from the Brahms. Arnold Schoenberg had entered his life in 1895, and in 1902 married his sister Mathilde.
Both composers pursued an advanced musical idiom, pushing Wagnerian chromaticism to the limit. Zemlinsky refused to go as far as his brother in law.
By the time he composed the Third Quartet in 1924, his style had become leaner and the textures sparse. The finale pays tribute to Mahler, in particular the burlesque from his Ninth Symphony. The Fourth Quartet dates from 1936 - three years after the Nazis came to power and three years since he was forced to leave Berlin and return to Vienna. The death of Alban Berg in 1935 at the age of 50 came as a shattering blow to Zemlinsky, and the quartet has a deep sense of grief and hopeless despair. Although he heard a private performance, the work remained unpublished until its premiere by the LaSalle Quartet in 1967.
‘The LaSalle Quartet have a special authority in the music of Schoenberg, his pupils and associates, yet there is nothing in the least forbidding about these well-thought-out, unfailingly exciting performances. The LaSalle players are masters of all the music's shifting moods’ Gramophone, February
“This pioneering exploration of Zemlinsky's quartet output still packs a tremendous punch” BBC Music Magazine, September 2010 *****
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.
Zemlinsky - Chamber Music for Strings
(also available to download from $21.50)
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)
Zemlinsky: String Quartets Nos. 1 & 2
Nimbus Records is proud to present its first recordings with the Artis Quartett of Vienna. The first two Zemlinsky Quartets were recorded in the Concert Hall of the Nimbus Foundation in December of 1997. Quartets three and four are due for release in 1999. The Artis Quartett consists of Peter Schuhmayer (violin 1), Johannes Meissl (violin 2), Herbert Kefer (viola) and Othmar Müller ('cello). The Quartet was awarded the Medal of the Zemlinsky Foundation at a special concert in Vienna last year.
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.