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String quartet in two movements that faithfully follows Bartók’s tradition despite its unique and contemporary musical phraseology. At its core, the first movement works melodies of passionate and mellow emotions into a strictly defined structure. At the same time, its handling of time leaves space for melancholy, and allows the listener’s thoughts to roam freely. After an introduction describing an interstellar voyage, listeners follow the footprints of human struggles. The first movement ends with an ultimately unanswered question, inviting many future possibilities. The unbridled second movement is the perfect foil to the superhuman tensions of the first’s ending, or, more accurately, sudden stopping. Here, we don’t hear tense pauses, irregular rhythms, or yearning melodies; only the throbbing freedom of empty fifths and the loud clattering of sixteenth notes, which bring about a sense of liberated instinct and joy.
The piece demands the highest possible musicality and chamber music skills from its performers.