Piatti Quartet | 25 July


Suk: Meditation on the Old Czech Hymn ‘St Wenceslas’ Op.35a

Beethoven: String Quartet in F major, Op.18 no.1

Schubert: String Quartet in G major, D.887

We welcome back the prize-winning Piatti Quartet, who have performed in all the major venues and festivals around the UK, given concerts throughout the world, and broadcast on BBC Radio and overseas.

Piatti Quartet

Piatti Quartet

The quartet are renowned for their diverse programming, and for expanding the repertoire through collaborations with leading British composers.

A ‘Meditation’ on a hymn tune may not sound like a political statement – but it was. Suk played second violin in the Bohemian String Quartet and in 1914 amid the turmoil that marked the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, a new law obliged them to play the Austrian national anthem at the beginning of every concert. Suk decided to supplement this obligatory piece with a new work inspired by the ancient Bohemian (or Czech) hymn “St Wenceslas”. Audiences immediately understood the work as a prayer to their patron saint for the well-being of the Czech people.

Beethoven’s first set of string quartets (Op 18) was published in 1801, when he was already an established composer, and demonstrates his total mastery of the classical form developed by Haydn and Mozart.

Schubert’s monumental G major Quartet, his final and greatest work in this genre, was composed over a period of only eleven days; it is a titanic voyage through realms of light and darkness with a breathtaking range of expression.

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January 2020
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