Frederick Delius

Frederick Delius (1862-1934)

Nationality: English
Born: January 29, 1862, Bradford Died: June 10, 1934, Grez-sur-Loing, France (age 72)

String Quartet in e minor, RT VIII/8

(for 2 violins, viola and cello)
8:01 I. With animation
4:00 II. Quick and lightly
9:12 III. Slow and wistfully. ("Late Swallows")
6:23 IV. Very quick and vigorously
Duration: 27 minutes (approximately)
Composed: 1916-1917 (age 53-55)
Premiere: November 17, 1916. London, Aeolian Hall (3-movement version). 1919 February 1, London (revised 4-movement version)
Published: 1922 (age 59-60)
Revised: 1919 (age 56-57), Augener
4 recordings, 16 videos
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7:52
Brodsky String Quartet
I. With animation
3:25
Brodsky String Quartet
II. Quick and lightly
10:48
Brodsky String Quartet
III. Slow and wistfully. ("Late Swallows")
5:29
Brodsky String Quartet
IV. Very quick and vigorously
7:57
Fitzwilliam Quartet
I. With animation
4:07
Fitzwilliam Quartet
II. Quick and lightly
8:56
Fitzwilliam Quartet
III. Slow and wistfully. ("Late Swallows")
6:35
Fitzwilliam Quartet
IV. Very quick and vigorously
8:26
Bridge Quartet
I. With animation
4:04
Bridge Quartet
II. Quick and lightly
8:37
Bridge Quartet
III. Slow and wistfully. ("Late Swallows")
6:34
Bridge Quartet
IV. Very quick and vigorously
7:31
Villiers Quartet
I. With animation
4:03
Villiers Quartet
II. Quick and lightly
9:33
Villiers Quartet
III. Slow and wistfully. ("Late Swallows")
6:17
Villiers Quartet
IV. Very quick and vigorously
From Edition Silvertrust

Frederick Delius (1862-1934) was born in the English city of Bradford to German Parents. As a boy, he studied violin and piano locally, but his father tried, unsuccessfully, to interest him in a career in commerce. Eventually, he was allowed to enter the Leipzig Conservatory where he studied piano with Carl Reinecke and composition with Salomon Jadassohn. After leaving the Conservatory, he settled in France where he remained for the rest of his life, except during the First World War. He composed in most genres and did not ignore chamber music, writing a string quartet and several instrumental sonatas.

The quartet in its original version had only three movements. Delius, however revised it adding a fourth movement in 1916-17 .The opening movement, With animation, is in two broad sections starting moderately and then gaining greater chromatic and textural momentum as it unfolds. The second subject is a fleetingly wistful snatch of a tune, heard in the first violin and viola and then submerged under renewed sequential work. The movement twice reaches an impressive climax, closing with an unexpectedly somber mood. The second movement, Quickly and Lightly, is a kind of scherzo, at times playful, with the main theme passed from voice to voice.. Delius titled the third movement Late Swallows. It is not known why. It begins with a serious mood. The heart of the movement quotes an a melody he had used before known as The Magic Fountain and Koanga. The genial finale, bustles along full of good spirits.The main theme is introduced by the cello and then passed through several variations.

Delius writes in his own voice. He really sounds like no one else. A flowing work, well written for all parts. It can be recommended for concert and to experienced amateurs.

© Edition Silvertrust. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Related Composers

1900 WWI WWII Carl Reinecke (1824-1910) Salomon Jadassohn (1831-1902) Edvard Grieg (1843-1907) Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924) Christian Sinding (1856-1941) Frederick Delius (1862-1934) Claude Debussy (1862-1918) Florent Schmitt (1870-1958) Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)
Salomon Jadassohn (1831-1902)
Teacher
Nationality: German
Born: August 13, 1831, Breslau Died: February 1, 1902, Leipzig (age 70)
Carl Reinecke (1824-1910)
Teacher
Nationality: German
Born: June 23, 1824, Altona Died: March 10, 1910, Leipzig (age 85)