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In C: Emanuel Overbeeke

wed 29 apr 2020

My favourite C minor work is the First Piano Quartet opus 15 by Gabriel Fauré (1879)

This work combines in amazing fashion qualities which in theory should not be compatible: German structure and French elegance, an obvious feeling for direction yet with a feeling for colour, minor and major, continually in motion and strong melodies. The result? A new entity, one of separate expression, short and powerful gestures, serenity and rebellion, clarity and sophistication. I doubt if I shall ever realise my dream of performing it. I talked to the pianist after one performance who explained that is was difficult to find string players for it because they felt that Faure had not really done justice to them in their parts. Maybe that is why in my favourite performances it is mostly the pianists I remember: Long, Casadesus and especially Rubinstein, all of them very structurally oriented power generators.

The Concertzender broadcast this piece in 2015, when Fauré was Composer of the Month.