Click here to return to the main site.

Classical Music Review

Cover Image

Complete String Quartets
Volume 2 - The Middle Quartets


Composer: Beethoven
Performed by: Dover Quartet
Label: Cedille Records
CDR 90000 206
Release Date: 08 October 2021

Cedille Records releases the second installment of the Dover Quartet’s complete cycle of Ludwig van Beethoven’s string quartets with an album of the composer’s five “Middle Quartets.” This three-disc set, comprises the three Op. 59 'Razumovsky' Quartets, commissioned by a Russian diplomat and infused with Russian folk tunes; the graceful 'Harp,' Op. 74, named for its plucked string figures; and the intense Op. 95 'Serioso,' a forward-looking experiment that Beethoven originally intended “for a small circle of connoisseurs...”

Complete String Quartets: Volume 2 - The Middle Quartets contains three discs (20 tracks - 2 hr, 34 min, 10 sec) representing the second installment of recordings by the Dover Quartet.

Beethoven was between 35-40 years old when he composed the pieces reproduced on this collection. The first two discs are taken up with the 'Razumovsky' quartets, commissioned by the Russian ambassador in Vienna, Count Razumovsky.

The third, and final disc contains the 'Harp' and 'Serioso' works. The 'Harp' pieces derive their nickname thanks to the plucked strings in the opening movement. Beethoven titled the 'Serioso' pieces on his original manuscript.

There's no denying the fact that the Dover Quartet know these works intimately and obviously love performing them. There's a incredible dance between the instruments at times and nowhere is this more beautifully illustrated than on the opening piece 'String Quartet No. 7 in F major, Op. 59, No.1 I. Allegro'.

This series is an essential purchase for fans of classical music, especially considering the love, heart and soul that has been poured into this production.


Darren Rea

Buy this item online

Digital album
Digital album