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Brahms and Fauré

Chamber Music with the LA Phil

Tue / Mar 5, 2024 - 8:00PM

Dramatic and compelling, free but happy. Brahms and Fauré produce greatness with piano and strings.

No Longer Available

About this Performance

Joseph Joachim, a violinist and close friend of Brahms, lived by the motto, “Frei, aber einsam” (Free, but lonely). When composing the A minor String Quartet, Brahms abbreviated Joachim’s saying with an F-A-E motif, responding with his own F-A-F melodic acronym for “Frei, aber froh” (Free, but happy)—an apt description for this fervent and fulfilling work. Fauré’s piano quartet, though in a minor key, remains playful and bright as warm string melodies zip alongside splashy piano arpeggios.

Writing in 1924 while Fauré was still alive, Aaron Copland called him “the Brahms of France.” That comparison is most apt in chamber music, where both composers managed to fill received classical forms with highly original, idiosyncratic content. The influence of Brahms in Fauré’s Piano Quartet in C minor is most apparent in the transformative way Fauré develops his themes in the first movement and in the poignant weight of the Adagio. Deeply influenced by Bach, Brahms intensified thematic development in his String Quartet in A minor with tour de force canonic writing in each of its four movements, capped with an extraordinary coda to its fiery “Hungarian” finale.

Come early and enjoy a glass of wine on us to complete the perfect night out.

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