Having completed the jazz piano trio composing commission
I am embarking on a two-week self-study period with the aim of immersing myself deeply in the string quartet tradition before I begin my string quartet commission
. I'm very excited at the recordings and scores I have assembled on my table for study. I will be looking at:
Bartok, the six string quartets
Berg, Lyric Suite & the Op3 Quartet
Beethoven, the late string quartets and the Grosse Fugue
Janacek, the two string quartets
Ravel, string quartet
Debussy, string quartet
Shostakovich, the 15 string quartets
This collection of 33 quartets probably represents the pinnacle achievements of the string quartets composed over the 150-year period between 1825 (Beethoven Op127) and 1974 (Shostakovich Quartet No 15). Though Haydn, Mozart, Brahms, Schubert, Schoenberg and Webern are major omissions I'm letting Berg cover the Second Viennese angle and late Beethoven the First Viennese, it's enough for now! For similar reasons I won't be revisiting the late 20th century modernists like Elliot Carter, Ligeti, Penderecki etc.
Following these studies I will have the chance to hear the wonderful Tank Stream Quartet
live in concert in Sydney (and perhaps in the studio during their recording sessions) before beginning to write for them.