While the history of the string quartet was written across the Rhine with a concern for the homogeneity of the different parts, France stood out with its quatuors brillants, which showcased the first violin, treated as a soloist accompanied by a string trio. Heir to the symphonie concertante, it perfectly embodied the early nineteenth-century preference for ephemeral music tailored to virtuosos. However, when one looks at either Baillot – a tireless champion of Haydn and Beethoven in Paris – or the young Hérold – who had listened to the Viennese composers – or the surprising Jadin, this distinction between two national schools seems to be of little value. Beyond preconceived ideas, a different history of the string quartet was taking shape in France.
Fri 12 November 2021
Palazzetto Bru Zane, Venice
String quartets by BAILLOT, HÉROLD, JADIN