Edward Cowie - In Flight Music: String Quartets 3-5
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Label: NMC Recordings
Cat No: NMCD222
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 19th February 2016
WorksString Quartet no.3 ‘In Flight Music’
String Quartet no.4
String Quartet no.5 ‘Birdsong Bagatelles’
In String Quartet No.3 ‘In Flight Music’ he adds contrast with two flying-machine-titled movements: Hang-gliders and Vapour Trails.
String Quartet No.5 ‘Birdsong Bagatelles’ features 24 brief movements, which collectively cover all the major and minor keys of the chromatic scale. Each piece is named after a bird (Wren, Blackbird, Magpie ...) but Cowie avoids the Messiaen-style approach and instead focuses on the visual displays of birds and their habitat, rather than bird song.
String Quartet No.4 explores mortality. The quartet plays a continuous, slowly ascending, emotional and sensual ‘hill-climb’, which ends with a hymn-like theme.
Edward Cowie studied composition with Alexander Goehr. In 1971 he was awarded a Chopin Fellowship to study with Witold Lutosławski in Poland. He was composer in association for BBC Singers (2002-2005) and at the same time the first artist in residence with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.
The Kreutzer Quartet is ensemble-in-residence at Goldsmiths College and at Wilton’s Music Hall in London.
1-4. String Quartet No.3 ‘In Flight Music’ (1982-83, rewritten 2010)
5. String Quartet No.4 (1984, rewritten 2010)
6-29. String Quartet No.5 ‘Birdsong Bagatelles’ (2003-4)
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