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Danish String Quartet
Danish String Quartet / Caroline Bittencourt

Danish String Quartet

Schubert & Sörensen

The well-known Danish String Quartet begins the season with the four-year project DOPPELGÄNGER. Four world premieres of works by four known composers are performed, in addition to key works from the chamber music oeuvre of Franz Schubert. As the first composer in the series, the Danish String Quartet engaged the Danish composer Bent Sørensen. His music “is reminiscent of something that I have never heard", the Norwegian composer Arne Nordheim once remarked. A unique sound concept with ethereal echoes and repetitions are the hallmarks of his musical language in which the polyphony of the Renaissance finds an expression somewhere between Schönberg's atonality and the warm tones of Romanticism.

Bent Sørensen was inspired by Schubert's last string quartet. This composition is one of Schubert's most complex works and is more reminiscent of the symphonies of Bruckner and Mahler than of the string quartet genre. Ranging from ‘himmelhoch jauchzend’ (the ecstasy of joy) to ‘zum Tode betrübt’ (the depths of despair), with its rapidly alternating minor and major modes, Schubert's String Quartet No. 15 fights a major battle between light and dark. Tremolos provide the drama while long melodic lines of folk music conjure up memories.

Following the Belgian premiere of Sørensen's latest composition, the Danish String Quartet will perform an arrangement of Der Doppelgänger, a song from Schubert's Schwanengesang song cycle to a text by Heinrich Heine in which a man walks past the home of a past love. The tormented figure that he sees at the door seems to be his younger self.

Flagey, Klarafestival