The German violinist Antje Weithaas returns to Amsterdam Sinfonietta as guest concertmaster. She also performs as soloist in Stravinsky’s Divertimento for string orchestra, for which he drew inspiration from the Russian master Tchaikovsky.
Tchaikovsky’s third string quartet is quintessentially Romantic. The emotional funeral march from the third movement moved the audience to tears at its première. Stravinsky wrote the ballet Le baiser de la fée as a tribute marking the 35th anniversary of Tchaikovsky’s death. He incorporated melodies by Tchaikovsky, resulting in an atypically romantic sounding work. In 1958, while travelling in Japan, Stravinsky happened to hear Takemitsu’s Requiem for string orchestra. He was very taken by the young composer’s passionate style of composing. The encounter between the two composers signified Takemitsu’s international breakthrough.