The Queen’s Hall Series concludes with one of America’s finest string quartets, famed for its impeccable technique, assured musicality and dramatic spontaneity.
In a wide-ranging programme, the Emerson String Quartet contrasts two late masterpieces from Mozart and Beethoven with a fresh work by one of Britain’s leading composers, Thomas Adès, which the players premiered only last year.
Beethoven’s Opus 127 Quartet is the first of his so-called ‘late quartets’, in which the composer explores hitherto uncharted depths of intense spirituality. Its music touches on the profoundest emotions, with melodies of great lyricism and ineffable beauty.
Mozart’s Quartet K575 is a sprightly, glittering piece with a prominent cello part written for the Prussian King Wilhelm Friedrich II to play. The vivid sound pictures of Adès’s The Four Quarters evoke night time, dawn and daytime in virtuosic music, including an unforgettable movement describing a shimmering cascade of raindrops.
Emerson String Quartet
Mozart String Quartet in D K575
Thomas Adès The Four Quarters
Beethoven String Quartet in E flat Op 127