STRAVINSKY Concertino & Three Pieces for String Quartet
SCHNITTKE Canon in Memoriam Igor Stravinsky
BORODIN String Quartet No. 2 in D major
SHOSTAKOVICH String Quartet No. 8 in C minor, Op.110

“Where words fail, music speaks,” wrote Hans Christian Andersen, and with this program we present deeply personal musical tributes. On the death of Stravisnky, whose Concertino and Three Pieces for String Quartet open the program, Russian composer Alfred Schnittke penned his Canon in memoriam Igor Stravinsky, a contemplative work whose simplicity of expression is a fitting testament to the 20th-century icon. Dmitri Shostakovich's String Quartet No. 8, which was originally dedicated to “the victims of fascism and war” (referring in particular to the bombing of Dresden in the Second World War), is now understood to be an autobiographical work that is both deeply personal and universally transcendent. Finally, proving that music can express joy as well as suffering, we present Alexander Borodin's beautifully lyrical String Quartet No. 2, which he wrote for his wife on the occasion of their 25th anniversary.