Joseph Miroslav Weber

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String Quintet in D Major

For 2 Violins, Viola & 2 Cellos

Joseph Miroslav Weber (1854-1906) was born in Prague. He studied violin and organ there and enjoyed a career as a solo violinist and conductor, holding posts in Thuringia, Prague, Wiesbaden and Munich. His String Quintet was composed in 1898 for a competition held by the Prague Chamber Music Society. It won first prize. The highly respected chamber music expert Wilhelm Altmann describes it as follows in his famous Chamber Music Handbook.


“Weber’s string quintet is a tonally beautiful work which is grateful to play. Central European Romanticism is blended with Bohemian melody and rhythms much as one finds in the works of Dvorak and Smetana. Perhaps the quintet might be styled as program music since Weber gave each movement a separate title. The first movement is the longest and bears the intriguing title “As the Herr “Professors would want to compose”. It certainly strongly hints at the tensions between academics and more freethinking composers at the time. The title must surely be sarcastic as the music is far from dry and academic. To the contrary, it is highly romantic and in free form. The second movement, subtitled Youthful high spirits, is a Scherzo, wherein Weber demonstrates his mastery of rhythms. His use of the exciting Obkročak dance rhythm , laced as it is with drones and chattering, is particularly telling. Next comes a highly expressive slow movement, an Adagio which bears the subtitle Longing for the Fatherland. The aria given to the cello especially touching and generates delicious warmth. The finale, a presto bearing the title In the Countryside recalls some of what has come before, especially in the scherzo. This Quintet is program music in the best sense of the word and not only will it make an excellent selection to with which to end a concert, but should be very appealing to amateurs as well.”


Out of print since the First World War, we are pleased to reintroduce a work which should be a valuable addition to the scanty repertoire of string quintets for two cellos.


In addition, we are pleased to offer this Quintet in a version for 2 Violins, Violas, Cello and Bass. Our bass part was made by Anthony Scelba, noted bass soloist, Professor of Music and Director of the Concert Artists Program of Kean University. Professor Scelba has created an idiomatic bass part that adds breadth and clarity to the timbral spectrum of the work, making it a welcome addition to the double bass chamber music repertoire.


(A) 2 Violins, Viola & 2 Cellos-Parts $29.95
(B) 2 Violins, Viola, Cello & Bass-Parts $29.95
(C) All Six Parts $36.95




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