A Shostakovich Pupil • »I reckon myself among his pupils, among his flesh and blood.« It was with these words that Mieczyslav Weinberg characterized his relation to his great fellow composer, and Shostakovich missed no opportunity to recommend Weinberg’s music to friends and colleagues. The two were kindred spirits who composed in all sorts of different genres and over a broad stylistic spectrum ranging from folklore (in Weinberg’s case in particular, Jewish folklore) to twelve-tone elements. Shostakovich involved his pupil in a friendly rivalry in the field of the string quartet and in 1964 was very happy that he had just succeeded in being the first to write his tenth such work. Shostakovich’s widow Irina has been one source of inspiration for the Quatuor Danel’s occupation with the scores of Weinberg’s sixteen string quartets since 1995, and its members are now working their way through this cosmos and toward the goal of presenting a complete recording on cpo. In March 2008 the BBC Music Magazine named the first release in this series the best chamber music CD.
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