Boccherini: Cello Quintets, Vol. 2
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The second disc of Boccherini quintets adds to our appreciation of the diversity of inspiration that this eternally attractive and quintessentially classical composer achieved. All are within the confines of a choice of personnel that is both unexpected—the string quartet with extra cello—but also very personal, since the principal cello part was to be played by the composer himself and was designed, on some occasions, to be partnered by his royal patron, the cello-playing Crown Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia! Well might we try to imagine the exciting impression they made when this spirited music was first heard and something of this thrill is vividly recreated by Richard Lester as extra cellist with the Vanburgh Quartet. Gramophone magazine noted a touch of the impetuous in Lester's Boccherini double cello sonata disc (CDH55219), an adjective that perfectly expresses the relish and verve there must have been at those first occasions.

Boccherini wrote over 100 such works. Their quantity has served to hide their quality and while it took relatively little time for the music of Vivaldi to be discovered afresh, the music of Boccherini is only now receiving the attention it deserves. This disc fulfills an important role in that exciting process.

CDA67383  68 minutes 13 seconds
DISC OF THE WEEK (BBC RADIO 3 RECORD REVIEW)
‘Charming and delectable’ (Gramophone)
‘Beautifully recorded, stylishly played and overflowing with memorable ideas, this is a sheer delight and a must for all fans of 18th-century Classicism’ (Classic FM Magazine)
‘I cannot imagine the playing of these quintets being bettered’ (Fanfare, USA)