Ries: Flute Quartets, Op. 145

Ries: Flute Quartets, Op. 145

by John Herrick Littlefield
     
 

Ferdinand Ries was Beethoven's student and an early biographer, criticized by his teacher for imitating him too closely. As flutist and annotator John Herrick Littlefield noted in the booklet for this group of flute quartets, Ries probably took the criticism as a compliment. These quartets were written late in Ries' life, during hisSee more details below

Overview

Ferdinand Ries was Beethoven's student and an early biographer, criticized by his teacher for imitating him too closely. As flutist and annotator John Herrick Littlefield noted in the booklet for this group of flute quartets, Ries probably took the criticism as a compliment. These quartets were written late in Ries' life, during his retirement in the Rhineland, and they show how long it took for Beethoven's innovations to be fully appreciated. Only the middle quartet, the "Flute Quartet in E minor, Op. 145/2," could be called really Beethovenian. Its third-movement menuetto (track 7), compact and cleverly structured, could be taken for early Beethoven. Ries had a fair gift for a spun-out melody, as well, and in general his inner movements are the most effective; the outer sonata forms and rondos do not have the Beethovenian intensity that manifests itself as playfulness. Nevertheless, the buyer interested in the culture of the early nineteenth century will find this music intriguing to listen to; Ries lived in England for over a decade, and it's easy to imagine that Mendelssohn heard chamber music like this when he disembarked there. The quartet, led by Littlefield, offers admirably committed performances, but the sound, from a Dominican convent in upstate New York, is subpar; the flute part sounds as though it's drifting in from the next room, and the remote environment is entirely unsuited to the domestic circumstances for which these compositions were originally intended.

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Product Details

Release Date:
10/30/2007
Label:
Naxos
UPC:
0747313033072
catalogNumber:
8570330
Rank:
388671

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Flute Quartet No. 1 in C major, Op. 145/1  - Ferdinand Ries  - Ahling Neu  - Yari Bond  - Aaron Boyd  - John Herrick Littlefield
  2. Flute Quartet No. 2 in E minor, Op. 145/2  - Ferdinand Ries  - Ahling Neu  - Yari Bond  - Aaron Boyd  - John Herrick Littlefield
  3. Flute Quartet No. 3 in A major, Op. 145/3  - Ferdinand Ries  - Ahling Neu  - Yari Bond  - Aaron Boyd  - John Herrick Littlefield  - John Herrick Littlefield

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