String Quartet No. 6 (Shostakovich)

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Dmitri Shostakovich's String Quartet No. 6 in G major (Op. 101) was composed in 1956. It was premiered by the Beethoven Quartet but carries no dedication.

It consists of four movements:

  1. Allegretto
  2. Moderato con moto
  3. Lento -
  4. Lento - Allegretto

Playing time is approximately 22 minutes.

The Allegretto first movement creates a carefree mood using nursery tunes. The second movement is a cheerful round dance in E-flat major, the third movement a chaconne in B-flat minor. The final movement leads into a complex Allegretto showing the influence of both Alban Berg’s Lyric Suite and Richard Strauss’s Metamorphosen. The quartet also features the only vertical appearance of the DSCH motive (the notes D, E-flat, C, and B played at the same time). This happens at the cadence at the end of each movement.