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Sun, Apr. 14, 2024, 11.00 am | Elbphilharmonie, Recital Hall

5th Chamber Concert

Berg, Arensky

Alban Berg: Lyric Suite for string quartet

Anton Arensky: String Quartet No. 2 in A minor op. 35

Konradin Seitzer
Dorothee Fine
Sangyoon Lee
Olivia Jeremias
Violoncello: Saskia Hirschinger

It is considered the most demanding genre of instrumental music, the royal class of music par excellence: the string quartet. The special attraction for composer and performer lies in finding the balance between individualism and overall sound, when each instrument is equally challenged to soloistic flights of fancy and communal fourfoldness. The string quartet as a genre has succeeded in transforming and emancipating itself from bourgeois domestic music to an expression of the highest virtuosity.
One of the great word artists of the 20th century found probably the most apt description for Alban Berg's "Lyric Suite", describing it as a "latent opera" by none other than Theodor W. Adorno, faithful student of the composer. The presumable reason that led Berg to make the grand operatic gesture the expression of his chamber music, contrary to all expectations of genre, can be assumed to be private. For the "inner dedication" that the composer wrote was to a woman with whom he had a secret love affair: Hanna Fuchs-Robettin. The Russian late Romantic composer Anton Arensky also took unusual paths and was one of the few composers who broke the iron rule of string quartet instrumentation and doubled the cellos rather than the violins. That he chose to amplify the dark timbres had a sad reason: Pyotr I. Tchaikovsky died suddenly of cholera, and all of St. Petersburg was in shock. So, to commemorate his great role model, the still young Arensky wrote a musical homage in Moscow.

Venue: Elbphilharmonie, Recital Hall, Platz der Deutschen Einheit 4, 20457 Hamburg
Prices: € 28,00 / 20,00 / 14,00 / 10,00

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