Three Short Pieces

for string quartet

Michael Zev Gordon

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Composer Michael Zev Gordon
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Catalogue ID ce-mzg1tsp1

Notes

I had in the back of my mind as I was writing these pieces Stravinsky’s set of a similar name. No.1 in particular recalls something of the brightness and energy of the first piece in Stravinsky’s set; it also starts and ends with quiet long-held notes as the Stravinsky. No.2 recalls another composer dear to me – Janácek – in its sonorities and strain of mood. The final piece is a reworking for quartet of a movement from my own Fragments from a Diary for violin, clarinet and piano, that I wrote in 2005. Its title is taken from Rilke’s first Dunio Elegy. Out of stillness, the quartet rises to great heights and intense concentration, then slowly ebbs away to a point of some contemplative calm, if not full tranquility.

I wrote these pieces originally for the Carducci String Quartet, who gave their first performance at the 2006 Park Lane Group Young Artists Series at the South Bank Centre, London.