Antonín Dvorák-String Quintet in E Flat Major Op 97 (1893)
Kreutzer Quartet with Diana Mathews (Viola)
Live performance 13th July 2012
(Recording courtesy of Colin Still-Optic Nerve)
Allegro non tanto
In the summer 1893, Antonín Dvo?ák, who had come to New York, to take up the directorship of a new music school, visited the Czech-speaking community of Spilville, Iowa. He had been suffering with profound homesickness, and the visit proved a much needed tonic. In Spillville he found himself very much ‘at home’, enjoying long walks by the river, and playing the organ of the newly built church. For many years, attempts were made to ascribe ‘american’ qualities to the music that he wrote inspired by his time in the US, but like so many creative artists, his temporary exile from his homeland resulted in an outpouring of explicitly Czech works. The String Quintet is the most important of these, although it is often overshadowed by the (comparatively) small-scale ‘American’ Quartet.