String quartet project III: celestial moments in the afternoon | Beethovenfest | DW | 16.11.2009
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Beethovenfest

String quartet project III: celestial moments in the afternoon

At tea time, the Pavel Haas Quartet gave a one-hour concert featuring great chamber music works from the Classical and Romantic eras.

Pavel Haas Quartet

Pavel Haas Quartet

Joseph Haydn, often called the father of the string quartet, wrote some 70 works in the genre. His ninth and last series of quartets, the Erdoedy Quartets, were commissioned by the Hungarian Count Erdoedy in 1796 at a price of 100 ducats. At the time, a contemporary of Haydn's called them "masterly and full of new ideas."

In the concert, the Pavel Haas Quartet played the "Fifths" Quartet, Op. 76, No. 2. The work received its name because of the central role played by that interval - the fifth - in the first movement.

Antonin Dvorak

Antonin Dvorak's compositions have their roots in Bohemian folk music. Johannes Brahms championed this composer from the provinces, writing: "This fellow has more ideas than all of us put together. Anyone else could cobble together main themes out of the things he throws away."

Dvorak composed the String Quintet, Op. 97 during a prolonged stay in the United States, where he had become director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York. Those familiar with the quintet hear hints of Native American rhythms in the second and fourth movements. For the concert in the Bonn, viola player Masumi Per Rostad joined the Pavel Haas Quartet. In their interpretation, the musicians displayed extreme concentration and fascinating eloquence.

Program:

Joseph Haydn

String Quartet in D minor, Op. 76, No. 2 Hob. III:76 ("Fifths")

Antonin Dvorak

String Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 97

Performed by:

Pavel Haas Quartet

Recorded by Deutsche Welle at the Beethoven-Haus, Bonn on Sept. 20, 2009

Marita Berg/gz/kjb