LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

SIGNUM QUARTET

The Signum Quartet here interprets the vast String Quartet op. 130 in its original, 1826 version. Performed only once in Beethoven’s lifetime, the work was subsequently rearranged and lightened by the composer, at his publisher’s request. The full importance of this monumental score from Beethoven’s twilight years is best appreciated, however, in the original form. The original version’s six movements also show Beethoven’s desire to unite widely disparate elements into a whole, by juxtaposing a Cavatina inspired by operatic song, a Danza tedesca inspired by popular dance and a Great Fugue, inspired by the most learned tradition in musical composition. In this finale, the spirit of Bach hovers over the writing of Beethoven, who considered the Cantor of Leipzig the sovereign genius of learned music. His gigantic fugue seems to confront Bach, as though in a battle of Titans.

QUATUOR À CORDES N° 13 EN SI BÉMOL MAJEUR, OP. 130
(avec en finale LA GRANDE FUGUE EN SI BÉMOL MAJEUR, OP. 133)

  1. I. Adagio ma non troppo 13’17’’
  2. II. Presto 1’58’’
  3. III. Poco scherzoso. Andante con moto ma non troppo 6’58’’
  4. IV. Alla danza tedesca. Allegro assai 3’15’’
  5. V. Cavatina. Adagio molto espressivo 5’59’’
  6. LA GRANDE FUGUE EN SI BÉMOL MAJEUR, OP. 133 (dernier mouvement originel de l’OP. 130)  14’08”
  7. VI. Finale. Allegro (dernier mouvement de l’OP. 130) 10’00’’