Boccherini - Stabat Mater, String Quartet op.41 no.1 | Brilliant Classics 95356

Boccherini - Stabat Mater, String Quartet op.41 no.1


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Label: Brilliant Classics

Cat No: 95356

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Release Date: 24th June 2016



Francesca Boncompagni (soprano)
Ensemble Symposium


Boccherini, Luigi

Stabat Mater, G532
String Quartets (2), op.41, G214-215
» no.1 in C minor, G214


Francesca Boncompagni (soprano)
Ensemble Symposium


Luigi Boccherini is best known for his delightful chamber music, such as the substantial collections of string quartets, quintets and guitar quintets. His vocal works, including two operas, two oratorios, three cantatas and more than a dozen concert arias, are essentially marginal to his output; though the Stabat Mater of 1781, revised in 1800 from a soprano solo setting to one for three voices, is by no means untypical with its intimate mood, its sighing appoggiaturas, and the warmth and graceful pathos of the F minor trio movements which flank the 1800 version. Such features may also be seen as in a clear line of descent from Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater.

The Stabat Mater also includes certain features borrowed from earlier works such as the Quartet op.2 no.1 of 1761, or the Quintet op.29 no.6 of 1779. By the same token, Boccherini also stole from other works to write the Stabat Mater, including the Quartet op.41 no.1 in C minor included on this album. Written in 1788, the quartet is structured as a cycle (Prestissimo Tempo di Minuetto Flebile Prestissimo), and includes a melody in the minuet’s Trio that is distinctly reminiscent of the ‘Cujus animam’. Moreover, the Flebile reveals substantial borrowing from the final section of ‘Quando corpus morietur’. These connections with the Stabat Mater explain why the Quartet has been included in this recording.

This album is the latest in a series of recordings for Brilliant Classics by the period-instrument group Ensemble Symposium, who have previously recorded chamber music by Telemann (94330), Campagnoli (95037BR) and the Op.26 String Quartets of Boccherini (95302BR), released earlier this year. ‘There are plenty of engaging features in this recording by Ensemble Symposium,’ reported Musicweb International of the Telemann Scherzi Musicali. ‘The playing is attractively textured, well-articulated and closely recorded.’

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