March 25, 2016
QuartetWeb is five years old today. Marking the occasion, we present a simple but incomplete list of the unique things on it. (You have to look for them, but they’re not hard to find!) By unique we mean just that: you won’t find this information in complete form elsewhere unless it’s been taken from our site.
(QuartetWeb also presents much information that may not be unique but is hard to find elsewhere, about works, premieres, and recordings by composers and groups from many periods and countries.)
• Juilliard Quartet. All its recordings are listed (as of the time the list was created) of repertory covered by QuartetWeb.
• Kairos Quartet. All its premieres are listed (as of the time the list was created).
• Stanley Quartet. All its string quartet commissions are listed.
• The complete membership of many quartets is listed, including the well-known Borodin, Budapest, Colorado, Gewandhaus, Juilliard, Kronos, LaSalle, and Pro Arte, and Walden, and including the early members, even if they played in the quartet for only a short period or have not been as well known as the later members.
• Milton Adolphus. His complete quartets are listed, with an image posted of the first page of each. He wrote more quartets than nearly anyone on this site, and they’re good! This important repertory very much needs hearing. Alas, there are no recordings.
• Samuel Barber. The usual information about the premiere of the last revision of his famous quartet, the only one he completed, has been corrected.
• Béla Bartók. Almost all the recordings of his quartets are listed, from 78 rpm to CD.
The usual information about the premiere of his 3rd Quartet has been corrected, with an image posted of the invitation to that premiere and a page from Bartók’s autograph manuscript of the Quartet.
• Ross Edwards. The two sets of numbers of his quartets are straightened out.
• Ben Johnston. All his quartets are listed, including the incomplete ones and a complete one that very few people know of.
• Yuriy Levitin. All his quartets are listed, showing that the usually stated total of his quartets is too low. This is repertory that also very much needs hearing. Only three of his quartets are recorded, on LPs.
• Darius Milhaud. The premieres of almost all his quartets are listed.
The usual information about the premiere of his 6th Quartet has been corrected. We’ve also posted a page from an unpublished notebook of Germain Prévost in which Milhaud indicates the date and adds other noteworthy items.
• Murray Schafer. The premieres of all his quartets are listed.
• Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern, Alban Berg. All their quartets are listed, including early pieces, of which there is a substantial quantity for each.