Michael Hersch: Chamber Music     return to DISCOGRAPHY Page

Label: Vanguard Classics (ATM-CD-1240)
String Soloists of the Berlin Philharmonic
Michael Hersch, piano
Release Date: 2003









1. Octet for Strings, Mvt. 11, String Soloists of the Berlin Philharmonic

2. Octet for Strings, Mvt. 5, String Soloists of the Berlin Philharmonic

3. Octet for Strings, Mvt. 10, excerpt, String Soloists of the Berlin Philharmonic


"... austere and uncompromising. What attracts the ear, and keeps it engaged, is Hersch’s acute ear for harmony. This manifests itself not only in the colours of the sounds themselves – but also in the way that glimmers of tonality emerge at key locations in a largely atonal landscape. But, then, Hersch clearly has an innate dramatic sensibility. His Octet is spread over 11 distinctly characterised movements (and at 31 minutes the largest work here), yet how inexorably it moves. The climax is placed in the 10th movement (and, interestingly, the dramatic shape of this movement appears to be a condensation of the work’s larger structure), while the final movement (a reprise of the second) serves as an anguished, angry and strangely familiar sounding epitaph. The effect is devastating.” -- Gramophone Magazine

“With Hersch, you hear a sincere, emotionally raw voice with every utterance – often a harrowing experience. ... urgent, commanding, able to communicate without shouting and without cliche.” -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution

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