Wednesday Music: Luigi Cherubini’s String Quartet No. 1

I have something different for you today, dear followers of Wednesday Music. I was listening to Pandora last week and heard this piece of music from a composer I was unfamiliar with: Luigi Cherubini. The piece is his String Quartet No. 1 in E-flat major. If this piece is representative of all of his work, then I’ve really been missing out from not knowing about him. Here’s a bit about this marvelous string quartet.

  • Luigi Cherubini was born in Italy in 1760, but spent most of his life in France. He composed music from an early age. He was a contemporary of Beethoven, who considered him one of the greatest composers of the age.
  • Cherubini wrote this piece in 1814, but it wasn’t published until 1836. It was the most popular of the six string quartets he wrote. In fact, for most of the nineteenth century, it was a staple piece in the repertoire.
  • It is very different in structure to most classical string quartets. Dramatic Paris opera heavily influenced Cherubini’s style and in many ways, this quartet is quite symphonic in style.


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