Vogler Quartett play Weill, Henze, Widmann, Kagel, Ravel, Abril, etc. | Phil.Harmonie PHIL06034

Vogler Quartett play Weill, Henze, Widmann, Kagel, Ravel, Abril, etc.


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Label: Phil.Harmonie

Cat No: PHIL06034

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 3

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 23rd July 2021



The Vogler Quartet celebrates 30 years with this 3-CD set of live recordings.

During the musical season of 2014/15, the Vogler Quartet celebrated its 30th anniversary and to commemorate this milestone, they recorded four live concerts at the Konzerthaus Berlin and compiled selected compositions into this CD box.

“We could work out Kagel’s 5th quartet just before its world premiere with the composer himself. We expected a ‘musical revolutionary’ and a sharp ironist, but, at the Berlin university of music, we met a delicate, wise old man, subtle and listening exactly, who even made changes in the score while we worked on it together. The search for the path; at the beginning of the 20th century, before the radical change brought about by the 12-tone music, the urgency of the quest for new musical idioms was clearly perceptable, and it is in this sense that we understand Ravel’s quartet.

“The use of far-east and Basque motives in a nearly expressionistic manner, woven into cristalline but nevertheless very touching beauty, can appear very present-day, if one decides for this view. Kurt Weill’s quartet op.8 (we used an earlier concert recording of this work for the CD box) uses quite another idiomatic modus, it reminds us already of his later song-style, but it also fits well in the time of its origin, the twenties. Emil Nolde, Max Beckmann, Otto Dix. The music evokes a picture.

Jörg Widmann’s 4th quartet was finalized not until the night before its world premiere. Over the two weeks before, we daily received a new page of the score by fax. We assembled the final version of the quartet’s score on the very day of the concert on the train from Berlin to Essen.

“The rehearsal with Jörg took place on this same day as well. The quartet works with tensions between Baroque and modernity. Sounds, breathing, alienations. Again, beauty will be found if looked for. Antón García Abril is the senior champion of the new Spanish music, and since we had the good luck to rehearse with him in person his songs ‘Canciones del jardín secreto’ with the mezzo-soprano Zandra McMaster and to present them in concert in Spain and in Berlin, we are pleased to include parts of the Berlin concert on these CDs as well.

“Abril worked with us, just as did Kagel, delicately but insistent on his music, firmly, until a specific Andalusian tone was found. We thank the Konzerthaus Berlin for the support, Zandra McMaster and Michael McHale for the musical teamwork, Tobias Hoff for the recording, and Ulli Blobel for his enthusiasm to present this CD-box with ‘New Music’.”

- Vogler Quartet

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