composer Friedrich Gernsheim

July 17, 2020, 7:36 AM · Anyone familiar with the composer Friedrich Gernsheim (1839--1916)? Reading a book about string quartets he was mentioned there, I listened yesterday evening to his string quartet in A minor opus 31, and was blown away. Certainly going to try to listen to more of his works. By the way that quartet is on YouTube performed by the Mandelring quartet. Fantastic performance.

Replies (4)

July 17, 2020, 8:25 AM · Lacking real recorded performances, several years ago I multitracked his string quartets nos. 1, 3 and 5 (Op 31 is no. 2) and uploaded the mp3 files to IMSLP where you can at least get an idea of how they go. Also the string quintet Op.9. Quartets 1 and 3 have now been recorded by the Diogenes Quartet and I expect the rest are in the pipeline. IMO he's certainly seriously underrated although not quite up there with the greats
July 17, 2020, 3:04 PM · Thank you very much for the recommendation! I had never heard of him before and was very surprised by how great the quartet was. The symphonic work I didn't find quite up there, but I'll definitely look at the rest of his work, given how handy it can be to know such great, unknown music. And taking into account that it's his birthday >today<, it is especially fitting a time to discover him...
July 17, 2020, 3:25 PM · Ah Benjamin I hadn't noticed the birthday! Great coincidence and glad to hear you like the quartet too!

And Steve: thanks for bringing up your "Steve's bedroom band"! I listened a bit, really not bad for an amateur, and I mean that seriously as I am one myself! How do you do the cello parts?

Edited: July 18, 2020, 3:01 AM · Thanks Jean - my greatest compliment was to have been called "a quartet of talented students" in a published review of Stanford's chamber music. I will at least admit to having as many years in me as a student quartet.

The cello part I played up an octave on the viola and dropped the pitch digitally. Much cheating went on in other ways too - adjusting the balance note by note, tweaking the pitch by up to a semitone, difficult passages played at reduced tempo etc etc. It's wonderful what you can fake with Audacity


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