Talk:String quartet

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I have changed the phrasing in the first sentence from "two violin players, a violist and a cellist" to "two violin players, a viola player and a cellist", because I think for someone who doesn't know much about classical music or musical instruments, it might not be obvious what the difference is between a violin player and a violist.


David Martland and Camembert need to be congratulated on this entry. This is Wikipedia at work! Wetman 01:36, 25 Jan 2004 (UTC)

No it isn't. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:09, August 20, 2007 (UTC)

"At work" in the sense that is needs work, I suppose. (I've just made it almost readable at least.) TheScotch (talk) 10:09, 19 July 2008 (UTC)

Repertory list[edit]

Now I've added a start towards a list of the heart of the repertory. When a highly selective list is hammered out by people like you, it's useful for people like me. A dozen quartets is impossibly arbitrary: fifty would be too many to be selective. The second list however should be as extensive as Wikipedians can make it. Wetman 20:05, 2 May 2004 (UTC)

Is the "heart of the repertory" list intended to be descriptive or prescriptive? That is, is it a list of the thirty works most frequently heard at recitals, or is it a list of thirty works that provide a good overview of the quartet literature for a novice quartet listener? Or is it something else?

Physicist 14:34, 3 May 2004 (UTC)

Those are overlapping aspects of the idea of a canon you're mentioning, Physicist. Both are good. In general, two kinds of lists are useful: selective ones and complete ones. I don't want to complain about the growing current Quartet list, but it is neither complete nor selective. It's on its way to be very fully representative of a "complete" list. A "list of string quartets that a moderately literate listener knows pretty well" was my general idea. Such a list ought to reflect the pretty-well-agreed-upon standards. Repertory is the concept. Wetman 16:16, 3 May 2004 (UTC)

In that case, let me suggest that Schubert's Fourteenth Quartet (Der Tod und das M&aumldchen) and Brahms's Third Quartet be added to the list, as perhaps the best-known works of these composers in this genre. Probably one of the Mendelssohn quartets should appear also, but I'm not sure which. If we wish to keep the total at thirty, then including all of Beethoven's Op.18 may be excessive. Does anyone else have any thoughts on what should be added and what subtracted? Physicist 15:28, 4 May 2004 (UTC)

I added George Crumb's Black Angels as the token modern quartet. Hyacinth 20:35, 4 May 2004 (UTC)

I added Physicist's Brahms and Schubert. And I didn't remove George Crumb, but that's not often played here in New York. I suppose in more urbane circles it's part of the agreed-upon repertory... Would Elliott Carter make a token modern? But, if there isn't even a token modern in the repertory, isn't that saying something that is actually quite true, and might be mentioned in the entry? Wetman 21:25, 4 May 2004 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but I don't think it is possible to make such a list and be objective about it. People can probably agree that the quartets of, say Haydn and Beethoven are central to the repertoire, but as for a list of 30 pieces... I can't see how it can be done. Is Beethoven's opus 127 more important than opus 131? Is Bartok's fourth quartet more central to the repertoire than the terse third or the relatively "easier" fifth? As I see it, any such list is bound to be somewhat arbitrary and therefore of limited usefulness.

I agree that it is useful to give some indication of what the most important works are as well as a more exhaustive list, but I don't think this is the way of doing it. I think the best way is to have a chunk of prose exploring the development of the genre - the most important composers can be pointed out as part of that. A bare list such as the one in the article now might be useful as a stopgap, but I wouldn't want people to get too bothered about its exact contents, because in time, I think it ought to be replaced by something a bit more substantial (I may have a go at doing this myself over the next week or two). --Camembert

What are "the pretty-well-agreed-upon standards" (emphasis mine) that you speak of? Why are my additions to the list "suggested" while your original additions are not? Repertory doesn't describe musical repertory (hint, hint), but this list should consider availability of recordings, not just of live performances, which will definitely add more contemporary quartets. Hyacinth 21:49, 4 May 2004 (UTC)

Also, adding Brahms and Schubert makes the total 31, 32 if you count the Crumb. Hyacinth 21:50, 4 May 2004 (UTC)

I agree completely with Camembert and Hyacinth, the "general consensus" claimed in the article doesn't exist. This music is often felt by its listeners in a very personal way, and it's just not an area where you can get people into lockstep. Cheers, Opus33 23:54, 6 May 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps the very idea that there might be a canon is oppressive. A look into Schwann could decide borderline cases: schwann expresses a canon, doesn't it? Thirty may be an unworkable number, ignorant me. But fifty string quartets is self-defeating. If no one wants to see such an inherently wicked list, let's scrub it.Wetman 01:31, 7 May 2004 (UTC)~

Thanks for your gracious act of pacifism, Wetman. So, what do we do now? To tell the truth, I rather like the list, so long as it's open to additions. We have the advantage that we are a group author, so any list of favorites that we produce is less likely to be regarded as just personal preference (so long as enough participate). We're rather more like an opinion poll, which is fairer. So I revised the prose part along these lines.

However, if people would prefer just not to have a "favorites" section at all, I'm quite all right with that, too. Regards to all, Opus33 03:20, 7 May 2004 (UTC)

I think you are right that there is a "canonic" core to the quartet literature, and it is good to call attention to it in some way. The list is a good start. Personally I have trouble leaving any of the Beethovens out--especially op. 130 and 132, but also op. 95 and 74 and 127 and 135 and the Grosse Fuge--there I listed them all, LOL. Anyone else think one of the Shostakovich quartets is sufficiently central to the repertory to be listed--say no. 8 or no. 10 (the one with the big passacaglia?) How about Berg's Lyric Suite? By the way I like having the Crumb on the list--that piece was a very big deal when I was in school, and it certainly spawned flocks of imitators. Best regards to all! Great page so far. Antandrus 04:38, 8 May 2004 (UTC)

I have my personal favorites, the Crumb not included. Canons almost never include those pieces, but I would not argue for their inclusion on a canonical list (maybe I'd argue for Janacek's two), rather I feel reaffirmed in my original dislike of most of the usual canon. Perhaps we could break down the canon list by styles or eras, stating that the Haydn-Mozart-Beethoven-descendents section dominates live performances. Hyacinth 00:08, 9 May 2004 (UTC)

MUCH BETTER IDEA. Rather than making a canonical list or a favorites list we need to determine criteria for a list which is

A) able to change over time
B) quantitative or countable in some manner

Thus we could have a favorites list which could be determined by votes on a List of string quartets. Thus, as more people voted, or people changed their votes, the list would change, based on a countable thing. Or we could have a canonical list which could be determined by the number of sources which list pieces as part of a canon. Or we could have a most performed list which could be determined by documentede performances (the same with recordings). Or we could have various lists, because Wikipedia is not paper.

Hyacinth 00:27, 9 May 2004 (UTC)
I think "most reported as being canonical" and "most performed" lists would be fine (though probably quite hard to compile), but a list where we all add our favourites (or vote on them), while fun, does not seem to me like the sort of thing we should be putting in a serious encyclopedia. As I say, though, I'm not touching the list for now - I'll try to write some more in the article some time over the next week or so (me saying that shouldn't stop other people doing stuff before I get round to it, of course). --Camembert
I was vaguely ambivalent on this in the first place and really don't want to proceed if Camembert, whose judgment I respect, thinks it's not a good idea. The issue of "seriousness" that Camembert mentions matters to me, too--a list of "editor's preferences" moves us closer to being a chat room than a reference work.
Here is the copy of the list, which I just removed, in case anyone wants to pursue the issue further. Opus33 23:48, 9 May 2004 (UTC)

I would like to solicit opinions on two proposals for reformatting the quartet list.

1) The current format is inconsistent. Some works are dated; some are not. Sometimes opus numbers are given; sometimes they aren't. Sometimes key signature (or the lack thereof) is noted; sometimes it isn't. Sometimes works for string quartet, but which are not String Quartets, are given; sometimes they aren't. Sometimes editorial comments appear ("Juan Crisostomo Arriaga wrote three brilliant quartets before his abrupt death at age 19. Early 19th century Spanish composer."); sometimes they don't ("Arnold Bax - wrote three string quartets"). Furthermore, the verbal formula "Composer X - wrote n string quartets" soon becomes tiresome when reading through the list. I suggest that we try to work out a mutually acceptable standard format for entries. I propose the following format: "Composer name - editorial remarks" in the main list. Under each composer in the list there would be a sublist of works ordered chronologically, giving quartet number, key signature, opus number, and date. Here's an example:

  • Johannes Brahms - Brahms is believed to have composed at least twenty quartets before his published quartets appeared. These unpublished compositions were (it is thought) burned by the famously self-critical composer. Only three works survive.
    • String Quartet No. 1 in C minor, Op. 51 No. 1 (1868-73)
    • String Quartet No. 2 in A minor, Op. 51 No. 2 (1868-73)
    • String Quartet No. 3 in B-flat major, Op. 67 (1876)

(Incidentally, I notice that the dates in my reference disagree with those on our list - I'll look into this.) In some cases, such as Haydn and Boccherini, the sublist would be so long that I propose a separate page be created for it. Serial works would be noted as such, and subtitles for works ("From My Life"), when they exist, would be given after the work's entry in the sublist.

Perhaps someone else has objections to this, or has a better idea for a new format. Accomplishing the reformatting, including doing the necessary research (grab your New Grove!), would be something of a chore, but I think it would improve the usability of the list substantially.

2) I propose creating a list of "contemporary" quartet composers - say, composers whose quartets were mostly or entirely composed in or after 1950. Hyacinth in particular has done a good job of puttting these people on the existing list - thank you! Nevertheless, I think it would be helpful to readers if contemporary composers had a list of their own, analogous to the separation of "classical" composers (List of classical music composers) and twentieth-century composers (list of 20th century classical composers), but in this case on the same page (or a separate page?).

Physicist 19:24, 10 May 2004 (UTC)

I now agree there is no need for a favorites list, or a canonical list. A favorite list is ridiculous, while a canonical list is pointless, since our "complete" list is canonical, our opinion that a composer or work is part of the canon being apparent from their placement on the list. However, if we are to have a "contemporary" list then we must break down whatever remains into appropriate categories, such as "romantic", "baroque", etc., as on the list of composers. Hyacinth 22:29, 10 May 2004 (UTC)

I like both ideas (uniform format, sort by era). Perhaps also include composers' life dates? They're pretty relevant in a historical survey. I can help implement all these if this proposal gets consensus support (whatever that means! :=) ).
Please note that a List of string quartets by Joseph Haydn already exists. I will admire the person who's got the patience to do a Boccherini one... Opus33 22:46, 10 May 2004 (UTC)
I like the idea of reformatting the list along the lines of Physicist's Brahms example above - I started to do something similar on a couple of other articles (piano concerto, for example). Once a list reaches a certain length, I think it makes sense. Whether it's better to divide the list by era or have it in one lump, I really don't know. Divided up is nice because smaller sized chunks are easier, but then you have arguments about whether, for example, Beethoven should be under Classical or Romantic or both (the opus 18s are Classical, I suppose, but opus 131 is surely Romantic). So I'll let the rest of you scratch your heads over that one :)
On dates: I've noticed sources disagree on the dates of pieces quite a lot. I'm not sure, but I think a lot of it comes down to them disagreeing on exactly what you should give the date of: is it the year(s) the piece was composed, or the year it was finished, or the year is was premiered, or the year it was published? All make sense in their way, and they are often all different. Then you have problems about it not always being clear just when a piece was written. What the best way of working round such inconsistencies might be, I really don't know. In any case, I agree with Opus33 that including a composer's dates is sensible.
I knew somebody who was contemplating writing their dissertation for their degree on Boccherini's chamber music, by the way. Not heard from them in a couple of years... maybe they got buried under all the scores or something... --Camembert
Oh, a quick PS for Hyacinth (or anybody else who knows, I guess) - is Reich's Different Trains really for double quartet? I seem to remember the Kronos's recording of it just has them and the tape on it (of course, they fiddle around with stuff so that's not conclusive, but I think the piece was written for them). --Camembert
?: Hyacinth 03:20, 11 May 2004 (UTC)
Hrm. Well, the heading says "double string quartet", but in the text it says "a string quartet". I'll see if I can track down a score, just to set my mind at rest. --Camembert
I like Physicist's idea, and I'll be happy to help out formatting stuff this way (especially after my "new" New Grove arrives by FedEx--thanks Ebay!) Got a chuckle at the Boccherini comment... I can't wait until someone tackles the Havergal Brian symphonies in the same way. Btw there is so much stuff to put on the post-1950 list... thanks for starting it Hyacinth. Regarding how to date things--tough one. I have been putting date of composition where I know it, but my reference often has the date of publication instead. Maybe use an abbreviation where we know (c, prem, pub, etc.) Best wishes everyone, Antandrus 00:45, 11 May 2004 (UTC)
Since the proposal for a uniform format seems to have met with a congenial reception, I'll begin reformatting entries as time permits. I think the idea of adding dates for the composers is a good one. I'll also start work on the Boccherini. (The Brian I leave for someone else!)

I think that Antandrus is exactly correct when he remarks that "... there is so much stuff to put on the post-1950 list... ". It is for this reason that I feel that the usability of both the pre- and post-1950 sectors might be improved by promoting them to separate lists. Camembert points out the difficulty and artificiality of further subdividing the pre-1950 list. I think that there is little need to do this, as I do not believe it will expand that much further. Most current growth is in the post-1950 sector. Another factor is noted by Hyacinth: "..our "complete" list is canonical, our opinion that a composer or work is part of the canon being apparent from their placement on the list." Works that are still performed, recorded, and studied after (say) fifty years have, I feel, a stronger claim to be regarded as canonical than more recent works. Thus the pre-/post-1950 division represents one way of segregating the canonical from the non- (or not-yet-) canonical.
Physicist 14:32, 11 May 2004 (UTC)
Like I said, I'm not going to get too involved in questions of sub-divisions, but here's something possibly interesting to consider: eleven of the fifteen string quartets of that canonical guy Dmitri Shostakovich were written after 1950. --Camembert
Yes, I was aware of that as I wrote my comment, and it is interesting to consider. One wonders if Shostakovich will still be quite so canonical fifty or a hundred years from now. I'm inclined to believe that the answer is "Yes", but that's just a personal opinion, and I think it would be stimulating to place Shostakovich with the other "contemporary" composers and thus to acknowledge, at least implicitly, that our critical comprehension of him may be misguided and our canonization premature. Physicist 17:23, 11 May 2004 (UTC)

Before we make the pre/post 1950 split, I think we should talk just a wee bit more about it. Mainly, why 1950? I think many pieces didn't take 50 years to enter the repertory, they have just stayed for 100 years. Hyacinth 03:00, 13 May 2004 (UTC)

  • Settled. I think the every 50 year splits are great. Hyacinth 22:56, 19 May 2004 (UTC)
Adding my belated vote (having added to the problem if it is perceived as one) to the splitting off of a List of string quartets and some smaller, debatable list to be retained here, with a greater emphasis on the medium, its history (important points within), balance problems, ... more readily visible once the list is split off. Schissel : bowl listen 04:39, May 25, 2005 (UTC)

Quartet vs Symphony[edit]

Often string quartets are the only, or at least first, works I like by a composer. I think the reason is that they are recorded, produced, and/or mixed far differently from pieces for large forces such as symphonies. When I listen to a symphony on CD I always feel that I'm sitting outside the hall, whereas with a string quartet recording I feel like I'm sitting in the middle of the quartet.

Anyone able to confirm or cite this? Hyacinth 02:45, 13 May 2004 (UTC)

Only at the level of intuition, nothing that could make encyclopedia copy. I have a couple of quartet recordings where the microphones were apparently placed at the back of a very live hall, so the listener doesn't feel "in the middle" in any way. This is exasperating.
Perhaps this link would be of interest concerning the "insideness" question. Opus33 04:13, 13 May 2004 (UTC)

Most often or often[edit]

I think "string quartet" most often, not often, refers to two violins, one viola, and one cello as I can't think of counterexamples. Hyacinth 23:14, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)

If the instrumentation is given as "string quartet" with no further elaboration, the instrumentation is always assumed to be two violins, viola and cello. I think it is misleading to imply anything else. Antandrus 16:20, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Ditto. If Marcus2 would like to add a bunch of real examples of strangely-scored string quartets then I'll be convinced, but otherwise it will soon be time to re-revert. Opus33
Hrm. (Yes, I'm opening up a somewhat old thread, and don't ask me what I regard as very old.) There's Reger's D minor op. posth. but that has bass ad libitum and probably mentions it in the title, and the obvious other example, Schoenberg op. 10, (etc. etc. ...) Since Sculthorpe's String quartet 13 'Island Dreaming' has an elaborated title but not one that mentions that it's a quintet for soprano and quartet or so I gather, how to classify it? (And does Leon Stein's fifth quartet, with soprano, mention the latter in the title? Admittedly, these are quintets.) Schissel : bowl listen 20:26, May 24, 2005 (UTC)

I do not think Edgar Meyer's album, mentioned in the list, could be classified as an album of string quartets, since the instrumentation is mandolin, guitar, bass, and violin. Quartet, yes, string quartet, no.

I'm currently directing a nontraditional string quartet: 1 violin, 2 violas, 1 cello. It actually works surprisingly well and has a much more powerful sound, in my opinion. Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 19:09, 29 October 2011 (UTC)

Anton Arensky wrote a famous piece for violin, viola and two cellos which is officially called "String Quartet No. 2 in A minor, Op. 35". This is certainly a notable piece, and it follows, contrary to Antandruss's categorical assertion, that the term string quartet does not always refer to a piece for two violins, one viola, and one cello. The article as it stands makes no allowance whatsoever for pieces like Arensky's, and that surely is a significant error. TheScotch (talk) 08:20, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

Form or group?[edit]

Is the string quartet a form or a group? Should it be in one, the other, or both categories? The article currently states:

  • "A piece of music for four players of stringed instruments may be in any form, but if it is simply a String Quartet (with or without a subtitle) it is usually in four movements, with a large-scale structure similar to that of a symphony. The outer movements are typically fast, the inner movements in classical quartet form are a slow movement and a dance movement of some sort (e.g., minuet, scherzo, furiant), in either order."

Musical form states that form is also:

  • "a generic type of composition such as the symphony or concerto."

And later

  • "Forms of chamber music are defined by instrumentation (string quartet, piano quintet and so on). The structure of a chamber work is typically similar to a sonata."

all of which implies that string quartet may be legitimately categorized as a Category:Musical form. Hyacinth 02:36, 14 Jan 2005 (UTC)

See also: Category talk:Musical forms. Hyacinth 02:52, 14 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Form should be defined as the organizing principle in music, or how musical ideas/notes/etc. are organized within a whole. I must admit fault here for not actually checking the article Musical form before making changes; this was something I assumed. Something like a string quartet is an entity that exhibits form, not one that exists as form. The above example should be rephrased: "String quartets in the Classical and Romantic as well as symphonies and concertos, usually belonged in the sonata genre consisting of four movements....." String quartets, symphonies, concertos in any time period, especially within the last hundred years, certainly have no obligation to follow sonata form, much less any specific form; for example, a theoretical string quartet consisting entirely of fugues. The statment defining form as "a generic type of composition such as the symphony or concerto" is misleading; string quartets, symphonies, and concertos are more accurately described as a type of instrumentation, orchestration, or arrangement, something not at all related to form except in loose correlations.
This statement "Forms of chamber music are defined by instrumentation (string quartet, piano quintet and so on). The structure of a chamber work is typically similar to a sonata" is confusing in that its language is not clearly differentiating between a form or structure of music or a form of chamber music, i.e., a form of instrumentation, or way of organizing instruments within an ensemble. The statement that "chamber music is typically similar to a sonata", again, is vague; it is describing a specific phenomena found in Classical and Romantic chamber music. --bleh fu 06:59, Jan 14, 2005 (UTC)
There is a distinction between "should be" and "currently is". Since one goal of Wikipedia is to accurately describe reality, since people do describe instrumentation using the word form, then Wikipedia should describe this practice as it currently is. If you have a source that argues that things should be different, feel free to add that POV (point of view).
Regarding the categorization, what are the best alternatives to "Category:Musical forms" for instrumentations? "Category:Types of ensembles"? Hyacinth 23:18, 14 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I've moved the discussion to Talk:Musical form; I think it's more relevant there, as it encompasses more than just string quartets. --bleh fu 03:14, Jan 15, 2005 (UTC)
Sorry if I'm revisiting an old discussion, but I'm relatively new and it does seem to me that this article is describing two different things. The words "string quartet" do mean both the ensemble and a composition for that ensemble, but the fact that the terms are the same does not mean that they are interchangeable. If the ensemble were called a Four-stringed Foursome and the composition form were called Sonata Archi a 4 I am sure we would not have the description of both on the one page.
My main discomfort comes from the incongruity of having the category String Quartets which contains both the Borodin Quartet and String Quartet No. 2 (Borodin), which is surely confusing. I think the category should be split, even if this article is not.
This article is very lucid; however if a single term refers to two different things, Wikipedia's general practice appears to be to create a disambiguation page. --RobertGtalk 15:53, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
After the form of the ensemble is established (two violins, a viola and a cello), most of the remainder of the article treats the musical form, since there isn't much need to discuss the ensemble further. But yeah, it's a little muddy for those new to classical music. Kortoso (talk) 02:42, 17 February 2019 (UTC)

Revised "Repertory List"[edit]

I've added a list of canonical string quartets to the page, which is likely to be the subject of some dispute, but nonetheless was obviously lacking. I don't really see why there has been so much dispute over making such a list, as it seems to me the central string quartet repertory is pretty well defined. Of course, picking and choosing from modern works can perhaps be more trying, but the works I've listed are indisputably "classics" of the repertory, and though this list is hardly as exhaustive as the longer one below it, I think it may be that much more helpful for the beginner in this area. For fear of being accused of making some definitive statement, which I am not pretending to do, I have simply titled the section "Popular String Quartets." eeesh98 17:51, 19 October 2005

Shostakovich's fifteen quartets would be a nice addition to the list. Bartok was very conspicuous in his absence, his six string quartets generally being considered some of the greatest in recent history207.157.121.50 07:37, 25 October 2005 (UTC)mightyafrowhitey


Shouldn't we put tribute quartets in the rock genre (e.g. String Quartet tribute to Fall Out Boy)

Please sign your posts on talk pages per Wikipedia:Sign your posts on talk pages. Thanks! Hyacinth 21:33, 12 August 2006 (UTC)


Isn't the name of the first Heininen quartet just "string quartet"? Schissel | Sound the Note! 05:57, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Suggestion: List of compositions for string quartet[edit]

Since just having a category of works about which there are articles gives only a list of works notable enough to deserve articles of their own- a much longer list of works hosted in one article on Wikipedia can deserve its space for other reasons, if (as now seems to be the case) the notability rules are being enforced rather more stringently (all over the site, I've noticed)! Schissel | Sound the Note! 19:04, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

Suggestion: Add the Manhattan String Quartet to your list of important string quartets. They are the major American interpreter of Shostakovich.[edit]

Suggestion: Janacek[edit]

The first Janacek Quartet is of course called Kreutzer Sonata, as is the Tolstoy novella, not just Kreutzer —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 03:32, 16 January 2007 (UTC).

You're right: I fixed it. Thanks for mentioning it. Antandrus (talk) 03:35, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

Some recent comments[edit]

I don't see why Manhattan quartet should be listed, since 1. the list is of compositions rather than quartet ensembles, and 2. there are a number of other ensembles I would list before the Manhattan Quartet. Next I'm going to remove the addition of the Peter Maxwell Davies quartets from the list, as they don't really fit in with the others, which highly selective are part of an established repertory. The truth is, there are lots of important composers writing string quartets now - I hardly see why we should privelege these ones, most of which haven't even been written yet as far as I can tell. More fundamentally however the addition doesn't quite fit in with the intentions of the list, which you can surely figure out by examining it more closely. Feel free to respond if you disagree. (Eeesh 02:38, 9 February 2007 (UTC))

On second thought, I worked the thing about Davies into the "History" portion of the page, since I noticed something that needed revision anyway. (Eeesh 02:43, 9 February 2007 (UTC))

String quartet has Happy Birthday to You theme[edit]

The Happy Birthday to You theme in part of an unknown string quartet, possibly by Mozart, can be heard below: NonFreeImageRemoved.svg

Here is the intro to this unknown string quartet: NonFreeImageRemoved.svg

Does anybody know the name of this string quartet? Thanks--Geremia (talk) 17:09, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Glass and others[edit]

[Question moved from the article by Antandrus (talk)] is any of glass' music really notable? his quartets do not belong in the same list as xenakis. try getting rid of glass and adding ferneyhough and lachenmann's truly phenomenal 20th century string quartets. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

"Notable" string quartets is noticably biased[edit]

Whoever decided what quartets are "notable" is obviously biased toward 20 century pieces. For example, only 4 of Schubert's 15 quartets meets the standard of notable, but apparently every single string quartet written after 1900 is. I wrote one, should I add that to the list? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Leland01 (talkcontribs) 05:03, 17 October 2011 (UTC)

Seems Led Zeppelin's Kashmir is played by just about every electric string quartet these days (to the point it's overplayed), if you want to list a newer song. Bob the WikipediaN (talkcontribs) 21:20, 2 February 2012 (UTC)
Maybe it would be better if there were 2 lists, 1 of absolutely notable string quartets and the exiting list becomes a list of string quartet composers. Op47 (talk) 22:23, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
On second thoughts, when I made a start, I found a separate article listing composers of string quartets, Instead, I pruned this list, Severely in the case of 20th century composers. I also expanded the range of Dvorak's quartets, 9&10 are up there with 11,13&14 I am sure. I also added no3 because of its exceptional length. It is longer than any of Beethoven's quartets and I cannot think of any other mainstream (I know that is an opinion, but I am sure Feldman is not) composer who wrote one anywhere near as long. I trust this is acceptable. Op47 (talk) 23:40, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

Notable String Quartets[edit]

A number of requests for citation have been placed on this list. I am not surprised if I am honest. I assume the request is for verification that the quartets are notable for being exceptionally popular, famous or some aspect of the music. I think it is fair enough, the list had become rather indescriminate especially at the 20th century end. Obviously at this stage, the contents of the list are subjective. I tried to be objective and put actually famous pieces in, rather than pander to my personal tasted. I doubt I succeeded though.

I suggest that to be included a piece should come under one of the following:

  • It is considered important such that any self respecting professional quartet would include it in their repertoire
  • It is exceptionally famous such that including it in the programme is going to increase the audience
  • It is exceptionally famous such that many recordings have been made and they are considered good sellers by the publisher
  • It has been used as a sound track
  • There is an exceptional attribute to the piece e.g. length, number of movements

If a composer e.g. Beethoven has written a notable series of quartets and none are any better than the other then perhaps the whole series should be listed as a single entry.

I hope this helps Op47 (talk) 11:34, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

9 months later, and I still cannot find citations for the others. Rather than leave the unsightly, but reasonable citations required flags, I have put the remainder of the list here. As and when citations can be found, the entries can be re-instated.

I will keep on looking. Op47 (talk) 14:51, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

File:Tallinn String Quartet in Tel Aviv.jpg[edit]

Could we get the right hand empty space/piano (& possibly some of the space above) trimmed off of File:Tallinn String Quartet in Tel Aviv.jpg? Hyacinth (talk) 01:29, 14 October 2012 (UTC)

Separate Articles for String Quartet (ensemble) and String Quartet (musical composition)?[edit]

I am wondering if we should (for the benefit of the very naive reader) have separate articles, or at least some explanation at the very beginning that "String Quartet" can have two different meanings.Tetsuo (talk) 12:02, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

But we do point out exactly that distinction, and literally at the "very beginning". The opening words of the lede say: A string quartet is a musical ensemble of four string players – two violin players, a violist and a cellist – or a piece written to be performed by such a group.
I can see an argument for making separate articles, but I wouldn't support it since there's such a close and intimate connection between the works and the ensembles. There are certainly works that are not string quartets written for string quartets, but they are very much the exception. No such close relationship exists between the symphony and the symphony orchestra, the piano sonata and the piano, or opera or lieder and the human voice, for example. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 19:35, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

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