Franz Schubert’s string quartet #14, subtitled “Death and the Maiden”, is one of the most famous compositions in the chamber music repertoire. The performing group is the Takacs Quartet.
Geraldine Walther is now the viola player of the quartet. Those of you who live in the San Francisco Bay area may recall her name, because she was the first chair viola player of the San Francisco Symphony for many years.
This excellent new performance, recorded following a global concert series, has received outstanding recognition in the press. This audio CD was issued October 12, 2010
The Takács’ playing of the second movement is characterized by Schubert’s great pain and suffering. He was ill, and he died at age 31. Listen as three of the Quartet’s musicians play the insistent theme of ‘Death in pursuit of the Maiden,’ the violin part expresses the Maiden’s tender fragility and rising panic with sensitive poignancy. The final movement is in the form of a dance. The group plays it super fast, and this kind of risk-taking is often a Takács trademark.
Here is an interesting video that allows you to know the players, and hear a brief section of this Schubert quartet:
Tags: Takács Quartet, Schubert, Death and the Maiden