Sterndale Bennett - Sextet in F sharp minor, Chamber Trio, String Quartet in G | Naxos 8571379

Sterndale Bennett - Sextet in F sharp minor, Chamber Trio, String Quartet in G


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Label: Naxos

Cat No: 8571379

Barcode: 0747313137978

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 12th October 2018



Villiers Quartet
Jeremy Young (piano)
Leon Bosch (double bass)


Sterndale Bennett, William

Chamber Trio, op.26
Sextet in F sharp minor, op.8
String Quartet in G major, WoO17


Villiers Quartet
Jeremy Young (piano)
Leon Bosch (double bass)


Famed for his sequence of Piano Concertos, Sterndale Bennett also wrote a small but distinguished body of chamber music. The String Quartet in G major is one of his earliest surviving works, revealing a precocious talent still strongly influenced by Haydn. Mendelssohn is the model for the Sextet, though Bennett’s highly virtuosic piano writing, with its concertante interplay, reinforces the work’s lyrical qualities and required dexterity as well as its advanced harmonies and hymnal beauty. The concise Chamber Trio radiates sheer charm while displaying an even greater grasp of structure and is the first English example in the trio form where both string instruments are given parts independent of the piano.

None of the works on this album are otherwise available at present, and this is a great opportunity for a revival of the composer’s works.

The Villiers Quartet are British chamber music specialists; their 2017 recording of the Delius and Elgar Quartets (8573586) was very well reviewed. MusicWeb International wrote: “This is a desirable chamber release with convincing and stylish playing from the Villiers Quartet who offer endearing expression and impeccable intonation throughout.”

The quartet’s recording of Fricker Quartets (8571374) is ‘Recommended’ by The Strad: “This is demanding music, and the Villiers Quartet has done well for reviving it with such immersive mastery that the occasionally grey, cardboard quality of the melodic material is coloured and corrugated into quirky, restlessly compelling structures.”

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