WhenNov 6th 2021 - Nov 6th, 2021
After a year of virtual offerings, Duke’s resident Ciompi Quartet returns in-person this November with an evening program featuring compositions created during the World War II period. Ciompi will be joined by students from the Duke Chamber Music Program.
The program opens with Irish-English composer Maconchy’s 1942 String Quartet #4, an economical set of movements representative of her melodic and expressive style that gestures toward Maconchy’s Celtic roots. Completed the same year, Prokofiev’s String Quartet #2 in F Minor coalesced while the composer was living in the North Caucasus, displaced by the Nazis’ invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. The evening closes with Richard Strauss’s Metamorphosen for 23 Solo Strings, written during the waning months of WWII and widely regarded as an elegy for Germany’s destruction during the war. (Strauss’s annotation “IN MEMORIAM” follows his concluding quotation from the first four bars of the Eroica’s Marcia Funebre.) The work, which builds from a set of small melodic ideas that traverse the emotional spectrum from despair to hope, mobilizes, as Juergen May writes, “all of the rhetorical means developed over the centuries to express pain.”
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