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NIELSEN String Quartet No. 3 in E-flat Major, Op. 14
A JOURNEY THROUGH SCANDINAVIAN FOLK MUSIC
MENDELSSOHN String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 13
Three Danes and a Norwegian, all in their early 30s and boasting copious amounts of hair and humor, comprise the Danish String Quartet, newly chosen as members of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center's CMS Two. They joke about being modern Vikings -- "perhaps a touch more harmless than our ancestors. We're not pillaging cities or razing the English coastline! We are simply your friendly neighborhood string quartet with above average amounts of beard." And talent. The three Danes began to play together while in their teens, and in 2008 were joined by a Norwegian cellist whom they found "hidden away in a castle outside Stockholm." Playing string quartets is their job, and, they allow, it is hard work, "but we mostly do it for pleasure, like we always did." Whether their own or their listeners' pleasure is the greater is debatable. Their musical offering mixes Scandinavian folk music with Nielsen's Quartet No. 3, a rarely heard Scandinavian masterpiece, and Janacek's "Kreutzer Sonata," inspired by Tolstoy's tale of murderous passion.
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