Instrumentation: String Quartet (Violin I, Violin II, Viola, Cello)
Size: 8.9 x 12.0 inches
The Langsamer Satz (literally "Slow Movement") dates from 1905 and was said to have been inspired by a hiking holiday in the mountains outside of Vienna Webern took with his future wife. He intended to write an entire quartet but put it aside after completing this one movement. Langsamer Satz is a highly charged work, clearly rooted in post-Brahmsian romanticism and tonality. A medium length quartet movement, the Langsamer Satz expresses a plethora of emotions from yearning to dramatic turmoil to a tranquil peaceful denouement. It shows that Webern, like Schönberg and Berg, was capable of writing very fine music in a tonal idiom if he chose. This work is a little masterpiece, suitable as an encore for professional groups but still within easy reach of competent amateurs.