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The Brodsky Quartet plays Greig, Queen’s Hall, London, 1907

October 17, 2014

The Brodsky Quartet (active from 1895 until circa 1918), of Manchester, England, led by Dr Adolph Brodsky (1851-1929), with Christopher Rawdon Briggs (1869-1948), Simon Speelman (1852-1920) and Carl Fuchs (1865-1951).
(photo: Percy Guttenberg, Manchester, circa 1907, postcard published by the Rotary Photographic Co Ltd, Rotary Photographic Series, no. 2576A)

Grieg Memorial Concert, Queen’s Hall, London, 3pm, 23 October 1907
‘For the second of the two concerts arranged by the directors of the Queen’s Hall Orchestra in memory of Grieg, the more intimate side of the composer’s art was pleasingly brought forward in some of his distinctive chamber music, which formed the programme yesterday afternoon. Apparently, this particular phase of music does not appeal so strongly to present day concert goers, and the attendance was not nearly so large as was the case last week at the orchestral concert.
‘The performance of the works chosen, however, was in every sense a most artistic tribute to the memory of the dead musician. It was exceedingly interesting to hear the melodious, if somewhat unequal, string quartet, the only one which Grieg wrote, and with which he certainly enriched the literature of music. It would be difficult to point to a more finished or sympathetic interpretation of the work than that given by the Brodsky Quartet, a body of players who play together with charming feeling and unanimity, and who yet exhibit freshness and individuality. The breadth of the opening movement, the tender and suave melody of the Romance, the lively grace and movement of the dance-like finale, were all expressed with subtlety, strength, and finish, and Manchester – when Dr. Brodsky and his fellow players come – is certainly to be envied in the possession of such distinguished musicians… .’
(The Standard, London, Thursday, 24 October 1907, p. 7d)

The programme for this memorial concert included the following Grieg songs by the Brodsky Quartet: ‘Voer hilset, I Damer,’ ‘Zur Rosenzeit’ and ‘Ein Traum.’ Ellen Beck and Percy Grainger also appeared.

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