String Quartet No.2

by Brian T. Field (USA)

Note on work

Each of the four movements of String Quartet II focuses on a particular affect, that is expanded and developed.

In the first movement, the focus is on a honky-tonk/jazzy theme in a straight-forward 2/4 time that is subsequently manipulated through syncopation and changing meters.

The second movement begins with a pizzicato “spark,” that flickers and quickly spreads, growing more complicated. The rhythmic motif builds to a climax which eventually becomes more controlled, and finally fades.

The third movement is a brief, subdued and more sentimental piece that becomes rhapsodic before returning to its inward opening style.

The finale—a bit of a companion to the second movement with its pizzicato opening—features a fast-moving, dancing triple and duple rhythm across the strings. It begins very playfully, becomes hushed towards the middle, and finally concludes is a roaring, raucous fashion.

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