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The Ciompi Quartet presents an intriguing program of works for voice and string quartet.

This recording was sparked by concerts in New Hampshire and North Carolina performed by the Ciompi Quartet with guest artists, Susan Narucki and Steven Tharp. The Quartet loved working with both singers, and had the idea that a disc of music featuring a solo singer with string quartet would be both unusual and intriguing. Each of the four works on this disc is wonderfully evocative, and each exploits the medium extremely well. The title for the CD, Melancholie, is taken from the Hindemith cycle, but it also expresses the overall feeling of the four works. The two larger pieces on this CD, Hindemith's Melancholie and Vaughan-Williams' On Wenlock Edge, have interesting parallels. Both are works by young men who went on to have long and distinguished careers, both works represent a coming of age for their respective composers, and both composers must be counted among the major figures of 20th century music with many works now in the standard repertoire. Both of the other works, by Kim and Part continue the theme of melancholy.
Earl Kim, composer
Three Poems in French
Ciompi Quartet, Susan Narucki, mezzo-soprano

Paul Hindemith, composer
Melancholie, Op. 13
Ciompi Quartet, Susan Narucki, mezzo-soprano

Arvo Pärt, composer
Steven Tharp, tenor
Ciompi Quartet, Steven Tharp, tenor

Ralph Vaughan Williams, composer
On Wenlock Edge
Ciompi Quartet, Steven Tharp, tenor, Jane Hawkins, piano

"...this recording makes me very happy because the music, the playing, and the singing are all so wonderful." (American Record Guide)
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