Igor Levit. Leonkoro Quartet
As is well known, Brahms took a long time to write some of his most beautiful works. He had destroyed more than 20 string quartets, he claimed to a friend; it was not until 1873, by then 40 years old, that he presented the double delivery of his Opus 51. Already with the Beethovenian fateful key of C minor, the first quartet reveals which tradition it intends to follow. No less complicated is the genesis of the Piano Quintet, which Brahms initially intended for a pure string ensemble, then arranged as a sonata for two pianos – before he reworked the score again on the advice of Clara Schumann. The American Caroline Shaw, with whose sophisticatedly historicized "Entr'acte" the multi-award-winning Leonkoro Quartet makes its contemporary statement, produces an incomparably lighter work.