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Shostakovich Quartets: Intimate Portraits, Part 1

A series with the Carducci Quartet

Carducci Quartet

Marking 50 years since the composer’s death, the Carduccis inaugurate a five-concert odyssey through the complete string quartets – works that enshrine his inner life, loves and closest friendships.

‘Childhood scenes, somewhat naïve, and bright moods associated with spring’ is how Shostakovich characterised his string quartet debut, a distraction from the political manoeuvrings that would still haunt the 5th quartet, whose coded defiance to Stalin also references the Clarinet Trio by his friend and sometime pupil Galina Ustvolskaya. 

While the fifth quartet is dedicated to the Beethoven Quartet, who premiered so many of these works, the ninth was for his third wife, Irina Antonovna, who had shared his experience of being evacuated to Kuybyshev. This quartet also resonates with the horrors of the Stalinist purges, but the gallop from Rossini’s William Tell rides to the rescue.

The end time for this concert will be added here closer to the performance date

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Milton Court Concert Hall