Peter Hänsel, String Quintet No.1 in G Major, Op.9

Peter Hänsel

Peter Hänsel's String Quintet No.1 in G Major, Op.9 dates from 1803. The first movement, Allegro maestoso, starts off in a Mozartian vein. The music is genial, relaxed and upbeat. The second movement, Adagio e cantabile makes a strong impression with its deeply felt themes. Given that he studied with Haydn, it is hardly surprising that one hears echoes of that master. The third movement is a playful Haydnesque Menuetto, typically Viennese, The lively finale, a toe tapping Allegro, again recalls Haydn.


Guide to the String Quartet Literature

Peter Hänsel (1770-1831) (sometimes spelled Haensel) was born in the town Leppe in what was then Prussian Silesia. He was trained as a violinist and worked in Warsaw and St. Petersburg before obtaining employment in Vienna where he studied composition with Haydn during the 1790’s. Other than two years he spent in Paris during 1802-1803, his entire life was spent in Vienna, working as a violinist and composer. He devoted himself almost exclusively to the genre of chamber music, writing nearly 60 string quartets, 6 string trios, 5 string quintets and works for several other small ensembles. His style remained firmly rooted in the classical era and is closely related to that of his teacher Haydn but he also introduced French and Polish elements into his works, the result of his sojourning in those lands.

We have reprinted a clean copy of the first edition. Haydn wrote no string quintets and this is just the sort of things he may well have penned. It can be recommended to both amateurs and professionals.

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