And here it is - a string quartet, only “more massive”, as they said in the old comedy “Carnival Night”. The grown-up string quartet is now called a string orchestra (with double basses!) and sounds completely different from its parent.
Surely even today Mozart’s Serenata Notturna would unlock the digitized heart of the one under whose window it is played. Its flattering charm, gallant and gentle wit still caress the ears and minds of the audience, and even the musicians. The added timpani part has a lot to show for the last part, but… let’s not give away any secrets. Mendelssohn’s concerto from his youth, with its justified lengths, gives space to a virtuoso performance by the soloist, and in an excited inner romantic statement. Shostakovich is not at all romantic, but strict, even harsh in his speech. Chamber Symphony is Rudolf Barschai’s transcription of the Eighth Quartet “in memory of the victims of fascism and war”, as the dedication reads. As always, Shostakovich gives voice through his music to the afflicted, the wronged, the dead, the rejected, and the forgotten. And he builds them a monument not in stone but in sound.
W. A. Mozart
Serenata Notturna D major, KV.239
Violin Concerto D minor
Chamber symphony C minor op. 110a
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