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String Quartets nos 1,4 & 9

Jerusalem Quartet

Although the string quartet lies at the heart of Shostakovich’s chamber music output, he came late to the genre; the First (1938) was begun as an inconsequential exercise after the Fifth Symphony’s ‘reply to justified criticism’. He then developed such a taste for quartet-writing that he produced no fewer than fifteen in all! But unlike Bartók, who made the genre a laboratory for his experiments, this most controversial composer of the Soviet era considered his quartets more as a kind of ‘intimate theatre’, as paradoxical as their creator – as can be seen in these three key works spread over nearly thirty years of his life.

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Quatuor n°1 op.49
en Ut majeur / C major / C-dur

· Moderato (4'30)
· Moderato (4'29)
· Allegro molto (2'03)
· Allegro (3'05)
Quatuor n°4 op.83
en Ré majeur / D major / D-dur

· Allegretto (3'46)
· Andantino (6'38)
· Allegretto (3'52)
· Allegretto (9'54)
Quatuor n°9 op.117
en Mi bémol majeur / E flat major / Es-dur

· Moderato con moto (3'59)
· Adagio (4'36)
· Allegretto (3'44)
· Adagio (4'02)
· Allegro (9'35)

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