Haydn – Bartók – Dvořák or “El Americano”

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In 1799, Haydn and Beethoven received identical commissions: to compose six string quartets for Prince Lobkowitz. Whereas Beethoven finished all six quartets, developing a completely new style in Op. 18 of his cycle, Haydn completed just two. That said, these two works represent the culmination of his achievements, and in places they foretell the style of the Romantic composers that followed. Dvořák also experimented with his style. After visiting the USA and travelling between New York and Iowa, he allowed his impressions of the “New World” to influence his Op. 96 quartet. Bartók’s Third String Quartet was awarded the Metropole Philadelphia Chamber Music Prize. Experimental in form (a multiple-movement format in a single-movement structure) and uncompromising in its voicing and harmony, it represents a milestone in the string quartet repertoire. Programme: Josef Haydn: String Quartet in G major, Op. 77 no. 1 Béla Bartók: String Quartet no. 3, Sz. 85 Antonín Dvořák: String Quartet in F major, Op. 96, “The American Quartet”

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