A review from the Casals Festival in Prades, France, 8/2015

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For those who do fancy the concept, the Shanghai Quartet recently recorded the controversial Fourth Piano Concerto arrangement, recorded live and in studio with some wonderful playing by the Lithuanian pianist Muza Rubackytė; the result is warmly appealing and quite overwhelming in times in its intimate distillation of Beethoven’s large-scale outpouring of song.
The evening’s pièce de résistance was inevitably the Shanghai Quartet’s Beethoven’s intensely serious laying out of the succession of terse, epigrammatic bits and pieces of melody and absolute fury that is the shortest of composer’s 16 full-fledged quartets, revealing rather than forcing, letting the music speak from the composer’s burning heart and keenly analytical head, in the city where after his self-imposed exile from Franco’s Spain, Casals continued to keep music’s spirit burning pure and bright.