Benjamin Jacobson violin
Andrew Bulbrook violin
Jonathan Moerschel viola
Eric Byers cello
Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet no. 12, op. 127
The string quartet can in fact be summed up in five extraordinary works: the late Beethoven quartets. These works transcend all boundaries and have retained their contemporary relevance for the past two centuries. The music is permeated by personal struggle and constantly shifts between unfathomable complexity and ethereal beauty. Using just four instrumental voices Beethoven redefined music’s universal expressive power. On six separate evenings one of these quartets will be performed at 10.30 pm.
The first of Beethoven’s late quartets opens with strong forte chords in E flat major – the tonality that represented heroism and power to Beethoven. It would seem to be a clear statement. However, rather than continuing in this vein, Beethoven suddenly withdraws into himself – a sudden mood swing typical of his late quartets. All in all, this quartet is exceptionally mild-natured in comparison with the others.