The Belcea Quartet has become one of the world leading string quartets over the last 20 years. No way I would have missed their concert at the TCE!
Once again, they gave a memorable performance, opening with Shostakovich’s 3rd Quartet, from 1946. It is possible to hear in the work’s 5 movements, a description of the pre-war years (1st movement), of the generalized conflict (the presages in the 2nd movement, the war in the 3rd) and of the post-war (a sort of Requiem in the 4th movement, a return to life in the 5th, but with reminders of the past). The Belcea Quartet gave a superlative performance of the piece, peaking with the admirable Adagio, dedicated to the victims, after the first 3 movements, which get darker and then erupt in violence.
2nd work, Franz Schubert’s 14th Quartet, named Death and the Maiden. Indisputably one of the highest points in the music of the Viennese master, composition also dark and violent, in D minor. What a staggering Allegro, followed by the unforgettable Andante con moto prior to the race to the brink of the abyss in the last 2 movements.
To top it all off, the performers gave an encore, the Andante of Brahms 2nd Quartet, calmer in appearance, but including nonetheless a more dramatic episode.
It was nice to see the pianist Piotr Anderszewski, partner of the Belcea Quartet, attending the concert!