- December 16, 2018
Johnstone composes a major work for String Quintet with 2 Cellos
GENERAL SCORE AND ALL PARTS
€3.50 in total for all music
Information: STRING QUINTET ‘ROSA MARIA’
A substantial romantic work for string quintet offered to the ‘Cuarteto Fluencias’ as a coupling to the famous Schubert Quintet in C Major for the same instruments. It is conceived in one large movement with a firm structure. Duration: c.12-13 mins
The opening melody (played twice by the first violin), reoccurring numerous times and in which the part-writing is every time varied, has a bold melodic intervallic sweep in an extensive melody which might remind some of an imaginary slow movement to a Bruckner symphony. A subsidiary tune on violin II is somewhat more Schubert-esque, before a repeat of the opening theme.
The second large section is more intense and somewhat faster. Here the material is rather equally shared between all the instruments, and generally the melodic writing is quite lyrical, perhaps lying somewhere between Schubert and Dvorak. The tension builds to a sudden unforeseen cut off point.
At this point, surprisingly, the two violinists play what appears to be a Minuet ‘a la antigua’ but based on motives of this very work up to this point; it is actually a hint of the 18th century and here a mention for Luigi Boccherini, a famous Italian classical period cellist (and fine composer of, amongst other works, numerous string quintets for this same formation) and who lived much of his life in Madrid. The ‘gentle’ minuet dance on violins is then taken up by the two cellists, and the music dips back and forth between violins and cellos with the viola silent. However, when the viola does finally enter much of the prominence is on this instrument for the remainder of this section, as if a musical joke to demonstrate that the viola can be an important leader!
From here the second section, and later the first section, are repeated as if in a kind of recapitulation, but there are many differences in the later part of the work to maintain interest and spontaneity. The small coda dies away mixing the melodic motives from both main sections.
This musical creation was originally written for Rosa Maria, the wife of the composer, and prepared for the ‘Cuarteto Fluencias’.