Program Notes

This string quartet is the composer’s only work for this medium and he composed it towards the end of the first year of his studies at the Conservatoire de musique in Montreal. Although a student work it was the first item he included in his catalogue of works, thereby showing his high regard for the piece. Vivier had originally planned the quartet to have three (or possibly more) movements. We do not know if only two movements were ever written, or whether a further movement has been lost. The first performance (which was the only performance of the work in Vivier’s lifetime) was given on August 10, 1968.The performers were participants in the Centre JMC Orford (Jeunesse Musicales du Canada) and the conductor was Marius Constant. It was the first public performance of any of Vivier’s works.

Excerpt from Bob Gilmore’s note in Boosey and Hawkes December 2005