Helmut Zapf - String Quartets | Wergo WER73482

Helmut Zapf - String Quartets


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Label: Wergo

Cat No: WER73482

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 28th July 2017



String quartets have for a long time been interpreted as a conversation between four people. For 20th and 21st century composers wanting to leave this idea of a discussion behind, the question has been: in what other ways can one write for this medium.

Helmut Zapf’s three string quartets perfectly illustrate the stages of such a confrontation. They have appeared throughout his entire career as a composer, and can be understood as markers for different periods in his compositional output.

In Zapf’s first string quartet, elements of an individual musical rhetoric survive and are clearly perceived as such. However, the context – the 'rational conversation' – is now present in only a rudimentary fashion.

The second string quartet is a logical continuation of the path already established by Zapf: the last remnants of rhetoric and conversational discourse are dispensed with. The four instruments do not act individually, but are treated as a single organism.

The third string quartet has been written for the Sonar group. This composition takes up the experiences of the previous pieces and at the same time tries to connect with the tradition: a reconnection from a great and skeptical distance.

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