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REVIEW - Ruysdael Quartet CD Presentation - 3 Dec 2011

04 December 2011

Saint Nicolaus surprises audience with a late delivery of the newest CD by Ruysdael String Quartet: Russian Generations 3.

It started off as a relatively normal CD presentation: your regular concert with the announcement that the CD is available and on sale.

However, the CD's had not been delivered yet. That didn't have to spoil the fun so the Ruysdael Quartet performed the pieces they had recorded for the third and final CD of Russian Generations: a compilation of music by Tchaikovsky, Sergei Prokofiev and his DJ grandson Gabriel Prokofiev.

The standard of playing was pleasantly high. Tchaikovsky third string quartet tempts any player to exaggerate, however, the Ruysdael Quartet played contained and well-balanced, making it a true listening pleasure without unwillingly being exposed to an extravagantly gay show.

Another interesting play of balance was the juxtaposing of Sergei and Gabriel Prokofiev. The concert started off with Sergei's Duo for two violins, whose sound filled the concert hall at Felix Meritis with surprising ease. Two lines fluttering through the air, creating a weather system of its own.

Gabriel Prokofiev's third string quartet is dedicated to the Ruysdael Quartet. Gabriel is a famous London DJ and composes music with which he tempts a young audience to enter the concert hall. Influences of electro and dance are clearly heard in his work and now the incredibly tight rhythmical playing of the Ruysdaels invites you to become extravagant on the dance floor, especially the last movement: When-Where Groove.

Before the interval, the audience was entertained by viola player and quiz-master Gijs Kramers, who asked the listeners some witty questions about the composers and their work. The final question: "Who has the longest beard?" was interupted by a guest appearance of a weathered and slightly chaotic Saint Nicolaus who - after questioning the quartet members sitting on his lap whether they had been good - was pleased to deliver the new CD.

Entertaining, high quality and definitely worth a listen!

If only their website was of a similar quality...

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