(last name)
Op. / Title
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Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky

String Quartet No. 2 in F major, Op. 22
The difficulty in which unknown music—conceived with new and unknown methods—repeatedly finds itself is to make itself intelligible. Intelligible: not so as to flatter philistines, not to delight stupid reactionaires, but in the sense that this music, set against centuries of experience, must undergo a trial of strength that only naïveté or ignorance could allow it to underestimate or reject.Hans Werner Henze

Schoenberg, Verklärte Nacht, Op. 4

February 4th, 2007

Arnold Schoenberg, 1874-1951

Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night), Op. 4, 1899

Arnold Schoenberg, self portraitSchoenberg composed his Op. 4, Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night) for string sextet in 1899 when he was twenty-five. Despite an earlier, well-received string quartet, it is considered Schoenberg’s first important work, a masterpiece that remains his best known and most accessible music. Lush, dense, highly chromatic yet still just within the bounds of tonality, it can be regarded as a very late example of 19th century German Romanticism, a natural product of the trajectory from Beethoven and Schubert to Brahms, Wagner and Strauss. But while it stands virtually at the end of this great tradition, it was, for Schoenberg, only a beginning, a remarkable demonstration of early mastery that became merely a point of departure. « more »

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