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String Quartet No. 2

for string quartet

Films, Audio & Samples

Sample Score

Sample: First 2 pages of Mvts I & III; First page of Mvt II

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The first movement is in bipartite form. It opens with an expressive melody in the first violin leading to a developmental transitional section and a return to the opening subject. A second transitional passage dominated by the first violin then leads to a contrasting piu mosso section where irregular repeated semiquaver figures under a soaring first violin part develop to a fortissimo climax followed by disintegration and fragmentation and a pianissimo ending.

In the Adagio movement which follows, the instruments are muted and the music is inward looking and mysterious. The central section features the solo viola which has an expressive melody broken by rustling figures before the recapitulation of the opening section.

The third movement begins with a declamatory recitante section which performs the structural function of the minuet in the classical quartet form. This is followed by a lively movement where climbing semiquavers followed by a jagged syncopated subject are imitated and developed along with the opening statement of the recitante.

-- Alexander Cowdell --

Contents note

I. Andante espressivo
II. Adagio
III. Moderato recitante