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Schubert’s ‘Death and the Maiden’

Affinity Quartet

Ensemble Members

Josephine Chung, violin
Nicholas Waters, violin
Ruby Shirres, viola
Mee Na Lojewski, cello

Affinity Quartet performs two masterworks linked by a poetic sense of time. The Hungarian living composer Gyorgy Kurtag’s ‘Six Moments Musicaux’ takes its form from music made famous by Schubert and others in the 19th century, where an entire world of emotions could be conveyed in literally just a ‘moment’.

Following Kurtag, Affinity Quartet performs Schubert’s epic 45 minute String Quartet no.14 ‘Death and the Maiden’, which was not publicly performed during his lifetime. When composing it in 1824, the 27 year old Schubert struggled with knowledge of his imminent death from syphilis. His imagining of ‘Death and the Maiden’ is inspired by the 18th century poem of the same name by Matthias Claudius. Schubert’s ‘Death and the Maiden’ conveys an intoxicating dialogue between present, past and future.

György Kurtág
(b. 1926)

Six Moments Musicaux

Franz Schubert     

String Quartet no.14 in D minor
‘Death and the Maiden’ D 810
1. Allegro 
2. Andante con moto
3. Scherzo: Allegro molto                                                  
4. Presto

Forming in 2015 as students of The Australian National Academy of Music, Affinity Quartet appeared on Australia’s classical music scene as ‘one of the most exciting ensembles to make their mark.’ Classic Melbourne.

The quartet’s achievements include third prize at the 2022 Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition; the 2022 McGill International String Quartet Academy, Montreal; and the Young Talents Residency of the 2020 Amsterdam String Quartet Biennale. Overseas performances include Sony Auditorium, Madrid; Juan March Foundation; Casino de Madrid; Pollack Hall, Montreal; Festival Les Voix Intimes, Belgium; Fondazione Cini, Venice; Fornasetti House, Milan; Mirabell Palace, Salzburg; St Martin-in-the-Fields, City Music Society, Southbank Centre, and Prussia Cove International Musicians’ Seminar, London and UK.

Affinity Quartet appears regularly in Australian concert series and festivals, also performing new works by Australian composers, including Brett Dean, Matt Laing, Jack Symonds, and Darrin Archer.

This Event is sponsored by Lord Ebury in memory of Georgina Grosvenor.

Festival Pass

Until the 21st of May, you can buy a pass for $160 and choose 4 music events for a discounted package! Check out the festival pass page for instructions and more information.

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