Catapulting into Classical

A headlong leap into music, history, and composing

The 140 Note Quartet:  Introducing the #quartweet


The Signum Quartet, in conjunction with the Princeton Symphony Orchestra, has introduced the Quartweet.  The challenge is to write a four-voice piece with a maximum of 140 notes, just like a Twitter post.  The initiative was recently discussed in an article by WQXR.

The quartet notes that this is not an entirely new concept (except for the Twitter part).  Bach’s chorale Christus, der ist mein Leben clocks in at 125 notes.  The quartet also cites Webern’s Bagatelles and some of the Microludes by Kurtág.

The Signum Quartet has set up a page for the quartweets and their scoresA number of quartweet performances can be seen on YouTube, along with other longer performances by the quartet.

Here is a tongue-in-cheek quartweet for your Monday morning.

And Bach shows us, as always, how it’s done, with Christus, der ist mein Leben.


WordPress tells me that the post above is exactly 140 words, however they reckon it.


2 thoughts on “The 140 Note Quartet:  Introducing the #quartweet

  1. Cute (and mercifully brief). It’s the soul of wit, after all. I do wish there were sound files of those new little tweets, but the scores look pretty neat. Nice to hear the Webern after many years- iconic, perfect little structures (and pre-serial too, remarkably). But of course JS blows away the competition.




    • The quartet will be posting videos of the quartweets over time on YouTube and Periscope (another YouTube-like service) as they continue their residency at Princeton. And yes, Bach is in a league of his own!


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