CARNEGIE HALL PRESENTS
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 | 7:30 PM
String quartets by two beloved Czech composers frame an intense quartet by a contemporary Latvian master. Dvořák’s “American” Quartet was written shortly after his “New World” Symphony and, like the symphony, reveals his fascination with the Native American music and African American spirituals he heard during his US stay (1892–1895). The young Dvořák played viola in the premiere of Smetana’s String Quartet No. 1, a deeply personal work that Smetana called, “a tone picture of my life, my youthful leanings towards art and the Romantic atmosphere.” While not overtly autobiographical, Péteris Vasks’s music does speak to the history of his homeland and its struggles.
The contemporary work on this program is part of My Time, My Music.