22 October 2018
The Sacconi String Quartet are clearly completely committed to Fitkin’s music, as made evident in their mesmerising performances of Recur and Servant, both pieces of startling energy and power, using minimalist techniques as a starting-point but achieving an entirely individual voice.
All this plus the Sacconi Quartet on brilliant, concentrated form in Philip Glass’s second String Quartet made for an unusually stimulating concert which the enthusiastic audience won’t forget in a hurry.
WILLIAM RUFF @ReviewsGate October 2018
11 December 2017
Of all the discs I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing, the recent chamber/vocal disc of Dove’s music stands out head and shoulders above the rest. It is a recording that I frequently return to. Mark Padmore ‘owns' In Damscus; as no one else could, while Charles Owen and the Sacconi Quartet show Dove’s lighter touch in the effervescent Piano Quintet. A joyous release.
MALCOLM RILEY, Gramophone, Dec 2017
17 October 2017
Both Padmore and the Sacconi Quartet, who have a major expressive role as accompanists, are at their finest in ‘Soon, we will be free’, the serene, lyrical heart of [In Damascus]…pianist Charles Owen joins the Sacconis for the Piano Quintet, his crisp, incisive playing making a particular impression in the rhythmically buoyant outer movements
BBC Music Magazine, October 2017
1 August 2017
Seldom does a mixed vocal and chamber programme such as this hang together so perfectly...[In Damascus] was tailor-made for Mark Padmore, who summons up every iota of his immense interpretative powers to steer us through this reflective testament. This important release cannot be recommended too highly.
MALCOLM RILEY, Gramophone Recording of the Month, August 2017
17 June 2017
The beauty of the piece, for tenor and string quartet, is its restraint. It doesn’t sensationalise, get maudlin, moralise or politicise. The words are direct and the music respects that. The performance does, too: clear, focused playing from the Sacconi Quartet and lucid, unswerving narrative from tenor Mark Padmore. The rest of the disc is lighter but always with that trademark Dove economy: the Sacconis sound relaxed and bubbly in the 2001 quartet Out of Time and pianist Charles Owen joins for the Piano Quintet, intense and light-filled.
KATE MOLLESON, The Guardian, June 2017
1 November 2016
Music review: Sound Festival, Aberdeen
...All change, though, for Saturday’s lunchtime concert from the UK-based Sacconi Quartet and harpist Ruth Wall (*****), which included the world premiere of a sound-commissioned, bracingly energetic new work from UK post-minimalist Graham Fitkin. Recur for string quartet and harp was a gem of a piece, sparkling with plucked textures, its four-note earworm of a tune cast in endlessly inventive new contexts, funky and foot-tapping yet also full of piquant emotion, and it got a crisp, bright, thoroughly assured premiere performance.
DAVID KETTLE, The Scotsman, November 2016
4 September 2016
String quartets stand out for different reasons, from quality of sound (the Takács or, in the past, the Alban Berg or Amadeus) to adventurous repertoire (Kronos or Arditti or JACK) to versatility, among whom the Sacconi Quartet, currently celebrating their 15th anniversary this year, are front-runners. They have a festival, work with a wide range of musicians and actors and have their own label. They are also very good. The works here, typically, are carefully matched: Mendelssohn wrote his mighty A minor quartet Op 13 in response to Beethoven’s in A minor, Op 132. The playing is fresh and pliable, each work illuminating the other. Both have been widely recorded, but not together. Assuming you’re not a completist, that’s reason enough to snap up this disc.
Fiona Maddocks, The Observer, September 2016
Both Padmore and the Sacconi Quartet, who have a major expressive role as accompanists, are at their finest in ‘Soon, we will be free’, the serene, lyrical heart of 'In Damascus'Presto Recordings of the Year: Finalist 2017
The festival sensation, the young Sacconi Quartet completely bowled over a packed audience. The chemistry between these four young players is tangible and magical.The Scotsman
A beautiful blend of sound ... highly engaging.The Times
An exceptional ensemble ... a unanimous sense of musical breath and a meticulous attention to detail.Musical Opinion
A quartet of genuine substance.The Daily Telegraph
Great power and sweetness ... intimate closeness.The Spectator
Enviable technical prowess.The Strad
The finest I have ever heardEdward Clark, British Sibelius Society
A triumphant performanceThe Observer