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Fourth String Quartet

Instrumentation
2Vn,Va,Vc
Year
2000
Duration
22:00

Fourth String Quartet

I composed my fourth string quartet during 1999, for the Brentano Quartet, with whom I had had previous happy associations; the piece was commissioned by a consortium of chamber music presenters, including the auspices for this evening's program.  At somewhat over twenty minutes playing time, the quartet's single movement necessarily involves a wide variety of attitudes, gestures, textures, and speeds.  But overall one can detect a directed progress from slower to faster, from sparer to denser  -- although with many detours -- and finally to a kind of repose.  Stasis is not victorious, however, for the work ends (some might say) with the musical analogue of a question.

                                                                                     Charles Wuorinen
                                                                                     New York
                                                                                     September 2000

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