The Attacca Quartet performs the Quartet No. 2 in G Major, Op. 18, No 2
WQXR presented the Beethoven String Quartet Marathon on November 18th, 2012. Part of the Beethoven awareness month, all of Beethoven’s string quartets performed in a special marathon at The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space.
The Orion Quartet, the Afiara Quartet, the Amphion Quartet, the Attacca Quartet, the Jasper Quartet and other notable Beethoven interpreters performed.
The String Quartet No. 14 in C-sharp minor, opus 131, by Ludwig van Beethoven was completed in 1826. (The number traditionally assigned to it is based on the order of its publication; it is actually his fifteenth quartet by order of composition.) About 40 minutes in length, it consists of seven movements to be played without a break, as follows: 1. Adagio ma non troppo e molto espressivo 2. Allegro molto vivace 3. Allegro moderato 4. Andante ma non troppo e molto cantabile — Più mosso — Andante moderato e lusinghiero — Adagio — Allegretto — Adagio, ma non troppo e semplice — Allegretto 5. Presto 6. Adagio quasi un poco andante 7. Allegro
This work, which is dedicated to Baron Joseph von Stutterheim, was Beethoven’s favourite from the late quartets. He is quoted as remarking to a friend: “thank God there is less lack of imagination than ever before”. Together with the quartets op. 130 and 132, it goes beyond anything Beethoven had previously written. (Op. 131 is the conclusion of that trio of great works, written in the order 132, 130 with the Grosse Fugue ending, 131; they may be profitably listened to and studied in that sequence.) It is said that upon listening to a performance of this quartet, Schubert remarked, “After this, what is left for us to write?”