JØRGEN JERSILD (1913-2004): String Quartet, Music-Making in the Forest for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon and Horn, 3 pièces en concert for Piano, Quartet for Violin, Viola, Clarinet and Bassoon.
Catalogue Number: 12P061
Description: Over the course of his long life, Jersild had plenty of time to evolve as a composer, and thus there are two quite distinct styles on display on this disc. All but the string quartet are from the 1930s and 40s, and these are entirely tonal, with a neoclassical elegance and distinct traces of the composer's studies in France, with Roussel. The little piano suite is reminiscent of Ravel, and looks back to Couperin and Rameau. Music-making in the Forest is a delightfully sunny, optimistic work, like light Nielsen with a Gallic flavor. The early mixed-ensemble quartet is a serious and sober work; it was never published and the composer may not have regarded it as a mature composition, but it is very accomplished, with clear lines, an appealing rhythmic vitality and harmonic warmth. The 1980 quartet, a substantial half-hour piece in four movements, could almost be by a different composer. Although it in no way approaches the degree of modernity common in the latter half of the twentieth century, it is far more dissonant than the early works, the elegant classicism at times brushed brusquely aside by ferociously expressive, eruptive outbursts. Ensemble Midtvest.