Death and the Maiden gets an airing in Melrose

Melrose Music Society

By The Newsroom
Friday, 10th January 2020, 12:11 pm
The Fitzroy String Quartet, set to play for Melrose Music Society on Saturday, January 18.
The Fitzroy String Quartet, set to play for Melrose Music Society on Saturday, January 18.

Melrose Music Society will hold its first concert of the new decade, open to all, in the town’s parish church hall next Saturday, January 18, at 7.30pm.

The acclaimed Fitzroy String Quartet’s programme includes one of Schubert’s most loved and poignant works, the D minor Quartet, D 810 (Death and the Maiden).

This four-movement piece derives its title (albeit not Schubert’s) from the slow movement which is a set of variations on a theme from the composer’s song, Tod und das Mädchen.

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The lyricism of this section of the quartet contrasts with the rhythmic energy of the opening movement and the ferocity and frenzy of the scherzo and presto finale.

The concert opens with a string quartet in E flat major in three movements, by Boccherini, perhaps best known for the Minuet from his string quintet in E major, made famous in the 1955 movie, The Ladykillers.

This will be followed by Benedict Mason’s String Quartet No 1. Composed in 1987, it is a musical journey in five parts: perambulation, fast travelling, observing both standing still and travelling, and, finally, returning.

The programme finishes with the Schubert quartet, written in 1824, when the composer knew he was dying.

Dan-Iulian Druta, first violin, comes from Moldova.

In 2015, he was Junior Guildhall Lutine Prizewinner and makes regular appearances as a soloist with professional orchestras in the UK and mainland Europe, particularly Moldova. Laura Custodio Sabas from Catalonia, second violin, graduated from the Royal Academy of Music where she was a member of an elite ensemble, and has given chamber music recitals across the world and played with renowned professional orchestras.

The viola player, Emily Pond, also graduated from the Royal Academy of Music after obtaining a first class BMus (Hons) degree at the RNCM in Manchester where she won the viola competition.

As artist-in-residence in Italy in 2013/14, she gave recitals with leading European musicians and appeared with top European orchestras.

Cellist Michael Newman, who obtained a masters in music degree with distinction at the Royal Academy of Music, also studied at the RNCM where he was a prize-winner for Romantic chamber music, and has performed widely as a soloist.

Tickets at the door, £15. Free for accompanied school-age children.