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Vikram Seth: An Equal Music
Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Joseph Haydn
Vikram Seth: An Equal Music
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (13) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #2

Vikram Seth's novel An Equal Music is as evocative a portrait of the world of chamber music as you could wish for, but Seth is the first to say that words "can only attempt to describe what cannot truly be described." This...  more »

      
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Synopsis

Amazon.com
Vikram Seth's novel An Equal Music is as evocative a portrait of the world of chamber music as you could wish for, but Seth is the first to say that words "can only attempt to describe what cannot truly be described." This two-CD set adds the inevitably missing dimension to a great book, with performances of works featured in the story. They include the world-premiere recording of Beethoven's String Quintet in C minor, an obscure work that is central to the plot. This piece, like the other selections, is beautifully played and recorded, for this is not a collection of second-rate recordings cobbled together to suit the theme. Vikram Seth himself has chosen the performances, and with performers of the stature of Iona Brown and Andras Schiff, the playing is as good as it gets. Included in the selection is Schubert's celebrated Trout Quintet. If the book gives a taste for the music, and vice versa, these CDs will also get us delving further into this delightful and infectious repertoire. --Keith Clarke

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CD Reviews

"Two Treasures of Pure Pleasure"
Kirby | Saxon, Wisconsin USA | 09/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"
I purchased the book "An Equal Music" by Vikram Seth, not knowing that there existed a CD that was meant to accompany it. I was about a third of the way through the book, and Vikrams story was so captivating, that I longed to hear the musical pieces that his characters where so passionate about. So I set forth on a quest of my own trying to track down and put together each piece of his repertoire. During my search, I discovered this CD, purchased it, and stopped all reading until its arrival. I slipped it into the disc player, settled in with liner notes in hand, closed my eyes, and found a new appreciation and passion for the classical genre. Exceptional was track 8 of disc 2, "The Lark Ascending" composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams, an absolutely enchanting piece! Not to say that the other tracks are not of equal caliber, they are, just of a different mood.

This compilation is a brilliant companion to the book, yet alone, it stands proudly on its own merits. Bach, Beethoven, Hayden, Schubert, Vivaldi, and of course Williams are all featured on this CD, names all renowned in the world of classical music. The difference between this CD, and say another classical compilation, is that through the inspiration and support of the book, what once one could not identify nor differentiate between in the works of the above, begins to unfold with a keen grasp of each. This assemblage will definitely help you to recognize and feel each composer's unique style.

In the book, the Maggiore Quartet members expose to you, through beautifully interpreted prose, their driving passion behind performing each piece as they become consumed in each note. This caused me to listen intensely not only to each composition, but also to the individual score of each instruments harmonious part. Bringing a deeper connection with not only the characters in this book along with the featured musical selections, but also with the professional musicians themselves whose lives are music.

Mr. Seth should be commended for this creative marriage of fervent fodder. A brilliantly moving novel enhanced and brought to life through this CD. My next stop, an evening out savoring a live performance!

"
Wonderful book and record
henry grunebaum | Cambridge MA USA | 08/25/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is a wonderful read. An evocative novel about a string quartet and a sad love affair, which evokes the musical life as well as can be imagined and the nature of tragic love. The book leads one to want to hear the music(I went to the record store to purchase the pieces I did not have) and this record contains them all. A fine pair of complementary gifts."
Essential
philip | PARALOWIE, SOUTH AUSTRALIA Australia | 04/10/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"this music is an essential companion to Seth's book "An Equal Music", the jouney is best followed with a map of inner London and this wonderful music"