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Janáček: String Quartet no. 2, “Intimate Letters”

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Published on Oct 21, 2014

I. Andante - Con moto – Allegro – II. Adagio – Vivace – III. Moderato - Andante – Adagio – IV. Allegro - Andante - Adagio

Janáček’s second string quartet is a tribute to his friendship with Kamila Stösslová. Kamilla was married and almost 40 years younger than the composer; she is represented in the quartet by the viola. Significantly, Janáček originally conceived this part for the baroque instrument, the ‘viola d’amore’. In one of the many hundreds of letters they exchanged, Janáček wrote: “You stand behind every note, you, living, forceful, loving. The fragrance of your body, the glow of your kisses – no, really of mine. Those notes of mine kiss all of you. They call for you passionately...” The work was given its premiere in the month following Janáček’s death.

This stirring performance by the Czech Philharmonic quartet was in the opening concert of the 2014 'Indian Summer in Levoca' Festival.

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