Hagen Quartett

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György Kurtág

Hommage à Mihály András

Twelve Microludes for String Quartet Op. 13

Dmitri Shostakovich

String Quartet No. 13 in B-flat minor Op. 138

Ludwig van Beethoven

String Quartet in C-sharp minor Op. 131

Approximate running time: 1h 45m with one intermission

The Hagen Quartett examines three works that, each in their own way, have expanded the form of the string quartet. In his 12 Microludes, György Kurtág replaces the progression of several movements with a sequence of highly concentrated musical fragments, while Shostakovich’s String Quartet No. 13 merges its thematic content into a single long, somber movement. The internal subdivisions of Beethoven’s Opus 131, on the other hand, are so idiosyncratic as to seem almost arbitrary—fragmentation and consolidation here go hand in hand.

At the end of the season, the Quartet Week casts a spotlight on what many consider to be the quintessential chamber music format. Between June 7 and 16, eleven extraordinary international ensembles will explore both the historical development and the vast emotional scope of the string quartet genre in the intimate space of the Pierre Boulez Saal.