Anton Arensky

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String Quartet No.1 in G Major

“Arensky's String Quartet No.1 in G, Op.11 dates from 1888. The Allegro opens with a very dramatic, almost virtuosic, first theme. A slight Andante has a fine melody and is full of contrapuntal writing. The light hearted Minuetto allegretto which follows sounds like something out of Les Vendredis. The finale, Variations sur un thème russe is quite striking and exciting with many extraordinary effects in the succeeding variations." ---The Chamber Music Journal


Anton Arensky (1861-1906) was born in Novgorod but his family moved to St. Petersburg while he was still relatively young. His first piano lessons were from his mother. He entered the Petersburg Conservatory in 1879 and three years later graduated with high honors. Among his principal teachers was Rimsky-Korsakov. He subsequently taught at the Moscow Conservatory where he befriended and was influenced by Tchaikovsky and Sergei Taneyev.

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