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19950540
19950540
19950540

String Quartet No. 12 ... The Seasons (2010) full score

By Thomas Oboe Lee

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Violin, Viola, Cello, String Quartet - Advanced Intermediate
Composed by Thomas Oboe Lee. 21st Century, 20th Century, Romantic Period, Classical Period, Baroque Period. Score. With Summer: Cloudburst! Double rainbow … Trio 3). 46 pages. Published by Thomas Oboe Lee (S0.13511).

Item Number: S0.13511

Program note:
As indicated by the title, this is my twelfth string quartet. My very first work, Aperture (1974), was a string quartet. In between I wrote four (nos. 2 – 5) for the Kronos Quartet, one (no. 6) for the Manhattan String Quartet, one (no. 7) for the Lydian String Quartet, one (no. 8) for the Artaria String Quartet, two (nos. 9 - 10) for the Hawthorne String Quartet, and one (no. 11) for the Formosa Quartet.

The number twelve immediately brought to mind the months of the year. But I thought a twelve-movement string quartet might be a bit excessive, and difficult to achieve in a coherent narrative arc. Most classical string quartets by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven are in four movements. So why not the seasons, a movement for each: spring, summer, autumn, and winter.

I am a huge fan of “The Creation” by Franz Joseph Haydn. Confession: I am a huge fan of anything by maestro Haydn. For inspiration and guidance, I went to Haydn’s other oratorio “The Seasons.” Armed with a Dover publication of the full score and a recording of the complete work by Sir Thomas Beecham on EMI Classics, I got down to work over the summer of 2010.

String Quartet No. 12 … The Seasons, after Franz Joseph Haydn is in four movements, played without pause between movements.

1) Intro: Heavy snow … Spring: Crocuses blooming!!!
2) Summer: Cloudburst!Double rainbow … Trio
3) Autumn: La Caccia …Danza Rusticana … Trio
4) Intro: Heavy snow again …Winter: O Magnum Mysterium …Hail storm!

The work begins with four descending chords, depicting the falling of snow. But it’s Spring and crocuses are seen peeping through the snow …

Summer begins with cloudbursts, thunder, lightning and torrential rain. A double rainbow appears after the storm. The sun emerges from the clouds in the Trio section. It is a lovely day after all; but then the clouds return …

La Caccia: men go hunting in the Autumn. Well, the men in Haydn’s days at least. Peasant ladies dance as they harvest in the fields. A hawk appears, soaring overhead in the Trio as the sun sets in an orange-red sky ...

In Winter snow falls again; but it’s the season to celebrate the Nativity. Violin and viola chant “O magnum mysterium” …O Magnum Mysterium O great mysteryEt admirabile sacramentum and wonderful sacramentUt animalia viderent Dominum natum that animals should see the new-born LordJacentem in praesepio! lying in a manger!Beata Virgo, cujus viscera Blessed is the Virgin whose wombMeruerunt portare was worthy to bearDominum Christum. Christ the Lord.Alleluia. Alleluia.A hailstorm wreaks havoc.

Fine.

Audio link.   Copy and paste the URL link into your browser.

https://thomasoboelee.bandcamp.com/album/string-quartet-no-12-the-seasons-2010

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