DAN WELCHER (b.1948): String Quartets No. 1, No. 2 "Harbor Music" and No. 3 "Cassatt".
Catalogue Number: 01L086
Description: The third quartet was written for this ensemble, and pays tribute to Mary Cassatt, the American Impressionist painter, in three pieces of attractive program music based on three of her paintings; the first a Spanish-inspired portrait; the second rather Shostakovich-like, with quotations from Gounod for an opera-inspired scene; the third lushly impressionistic, wistful and slightly melancholy. The second quartet is a good-humored divertimento, inspired by a visit to Australia. These two works are decidedly tonal; the first, an ambitious four-movement piece, is less conventionally so, a stormy and dramatic work, though still in a very approachable idiom, with echoes of Shostakovich especially in the slow movement and the irritable, ironic scherzo. Cassatt String Quartet.