Commissioned Stift Festival 2018
Publisher Gehrmans Musikförlag
Opus Number 61
Category Chamber Music
Year 2018
Duration 15 min
Instrumentation  violin, violin, viola, cello


Program note

My second string quartet “Letters” op.61 is a commission by Daniel Rowland and the Stift Festival 2018 in the Netherlands, and it is dedicated to the Brodsky Quartet. The theme for the Stift Festival of 2018 is words and letters and I was asked if I could compose something on this theme. I got to know that Janacek’s second string quartet “Intimate Letters” was going to be played by the Brodsky Quartet in one concert, so I decided to explore the possibility of writing a commentary piece to his quartet and his letters. My second string quartet “Letters” is inspired by the letters Leos Janacek wrote to his beloved Kamila. I have tried to describe the emotions and words he puts in to his letters; heaven, hope, fear, fire and much more, with my own music.




Letters –  Listen on Youtube



Damström manages in a creative way to combine the string quartet with the meoldrama. Damström contrasts expressive and meditative elements in her habitual successful manner and also enriches the tonal fundament in a personal way with many kinds modernistic textures.  — Especially the far from easaly played music by Damström, with it’s well integrated Janácek quotations, gave a vivid impression in the sometimes gaudy changes between skirt vibrant and grimly cutting parts.
-Mats Liljeroos, Hufvudstadsbladet 17.6.2019

Damström lyckas på ett kreativt sätt syntetisera stråkkvartetten med melodramen. Damström kontrasterar på sedvanligt fruktbart vis expressiva och meditativa element och berikar även på ett personligt sätt det tonala fundamentet med diverse mer modernistiskt avfattade texturer.  — Framför allt den långtifrån lättförverkligade damströmska satsen, med sina skickligt interfolierade Janácekcitat, gav ett levande intryck i de stundtals bjärta växlingarna mellan skirt vibrerande och furiöst skärande partier.
– Mats Liljeroos, Hufvudstadsbladet 17.6.2019


2018 August  29th at the Stift Festival – More info

2019 June 15th – Finnish premiere at Musik vid Havet – More info

2019 August  3rd  at Kokonainen Festival – More info

2019 Auggust 11th at Temppeliaukio Church – More info

2019 August  23rd and 24th at the Tampering Festival More info

2021 November 4th at Kauniaisten musiikkijuhlat More info

2023 July 30th at Korsholm Music FestivalMore info