Alina Ibragimova, Pablo Hernán Benedí [violins], Emilie Hörnlund [viola], Claire Thirion [cello]
Chiaroscuro effectively means light-dark, and indeed I was particularly impressed how the quartet succeed in sharpening contrasts of phrasing, tone production, dynamic and gesture. Sharp-edged and then exuberant; humorous and then tender, it always maintains a natural flow. Far from sounding like a thoroughly over-stuffed inauguration of a genre, in the hands of the Chiaroscuro Quartet, these Haydn Quartets seem as though they have just been written.
Swiss Radio SRF2 Kultur
Formed in 2005, Chiaroscuro Quartet comprises violinists Alina Ibragimova (Russia) and Pablo Hernán Benedí (Spain), the Swedish violist Emilie Hörnlund and cellist Claire Thirion from France. Dubbed ‘a trailblazer for the authentic performance of High Classical chamber music’ in Gramophone, this international ensemble performs music of the Classical and early Romantic periods on gut strings and with historical bows. The quartet’s unique sound – described in The Observer as ‘a shock to the ears of the best kind’ – is highly acclaimed by audiences and critics all over Europe.
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