Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Schneider Quartet Haydn, Op.51, The Seven Last Words by the

The Schneider Quartet recorded the first complete cycle of Haydn string quartets for The Haydn Society in the early and mid fifties, and thus made all of them available on record for the first time. This alone, and the fact that they have gone unreleased on CD, would justify the present post. But there is much more. Alexander Schneider, 1st violin; Isidore Cohen, second violin; Karen Tuttle, viola; and Madeline Foley, cello, have bequeathed to us some of the finest Haydn performances on record. If latter day tastes prefer a less full-blooded approach to this and other classical era composers, these performances nonetheless are right up my alley.

Why this historically important set has not been issued on CD is something that has baffled me for a while. I've been told the original tapes have been lost, but surely pristine LPs would work to bring the recordings into the digital age and make them known to a new audience. This and subsequent posts from these recordings are all from LPs, in good but not pristine condition, in my personal collection. I hope to renovate and post as many as I have, but, unfortunately, I do not have them all, and a complete digital issue of them is a pressing (no pun intended) need.



  1. I was informed by Fred Maroth of Music & Arts that he had the original master tapes - but was very reluctant to issue them as a set because of the financial drubbing he took in issuing the Haydn Society/Lili Kraus set.
    I would, of course, buy the Schneider qt recordings instantly (perhaps we have to revive the idea of "subscriptions" from the 1930's or have the originals be made available as downloads for pay!)

    Thank you so much for uploading your copies of these lp's.

    Best regards from over here,

  2. David: Thank you very much for the information. If Fred Maroth want to send me sound files from the original tapes I will happily clean them up for a copy of the CD set produced. I really feel these performances have to be made available -- not just for their historical importance, but because they are far and away my favorite recordings of these works. Thanks again.