(last name)
Op. / Title
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Edvard Grieg Edvard Grieg

String Quartet in g, Op. 27
anniversaries July 24
ViolinThe sweet old Amati! The divine Stradivari! Played on by ancient maestros until the bow hand lost its power, and the flying fingers stiffened. Bequeathed to the passionate young enthusiast who made it whisper his hidden love, and cry his inarticulate longings, and scream his untold agonies, and wail his monotonous despair. Passed from his dying hand to the cold virtuoso, who let it slumber in its case for a generation, till, when his hoard was broken up, it came forth once more, and rode the stormy symphonies of royal orchestras, beneath the rushing bow of their lord and leader. Into lonely prisons with improvident artists; into converts from which arose, day and night, the holy hymns with which its tones were blended; and back again to orgies, in which it learned to howl and laugh as if a legion of devils where shut up in it; then, again, the gentle dilettante, who calmed it down with easy melodies until it answered him softly as in the days of the old maestros; and so given into our hands, its pores all full of music, stained like the meerschaum through and through with the concentrated hue and sweetness of all the harmonies which have kindled and faded on its strings. Oliver Wendell Holmes

Bloch, Three Noctures (for piano trio)

January 11th, 2009

Ernest Bloch, 1880-1959

Three Nocturnes (for piano trio), 1924

Ernest BlochThis year is the 50th anniversary of Ernest Bloch’s death, a timely occasion to revisit his chamber music. Though Bloch was born in Switzerland and educated in a number of European cities, he emigrated to the United States in 1916 when he was 36 and became a naturalized citizen in 1924. Despite spending much of the 1930’s back in Switzerland, he maintained his U.S. citizenship and lived the majority of his remaining life in America. Bloch was an influential teacher as well as a composer and held significant positions at a variety of American institutions including the founding director of the Cleveland Conservatory of Music (1920-25), the director of the San Francisco Conservatory (1925-30) and a professor at the University of California, Berkeley (1940-52) before retiring. For all these reasons, Bloch is usually considered an American composer of Swiss origin. By those who knew him well, Bloch was considered to be a man of great passion, strong inner faith and a great humanitarian that transcended any borders of faith, nation or race. « more »

Exploring the String Quartet—The First 250 Years

Exploring the String QuartetSince its birth around 1760, the string quartet has maintained a vital and profound hold on composers, players and listeners: it has been the vehicle par excellence for a rich continuum of some of the finest music composed throughout the last 250 years. Across time, nationality, and centuries of changing style, the string quartet has formed the backbone of small ensemble chamber music with a rich lore. Music for the string quartet consistently features lyrical beauty, complex harmony, intense passion, powerful rhythm and elegant formal design. From the most intimate personal expression to the most brilliant virtuosity, from the ancient and otherworldly to edgy grooves of the present day, the string quartet appears to be an infinitely flexible ensemble engaging great composers and performers in one of the richest living traditions of music in all of history. For many, if not most, however, it a rarely encountered “hidden” genre, while historically, culturally, musically, for others, it is the mother lode. Take some time to discover this stunning genre, the heart of the matter. Explore

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earsense celebrates and explores how music makes "sense" with a focus on the extraordinary genre of chamber music. The centerpiece of earsense is a comprehensive database of chamber music composers, works, events and related media.


Works 41,998
Works with details 11,764
Composers 3,778
Women Composers 328
Nationalities 90
Audio / Video 23,199
Works with Audio / Video 5,559
Scores (public domain) 5,955
Glossary definitions 764
Program notes 205
Edition Silvertrust notes 214
Quotes 402
Lists 25