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Give and Take 
Back and Forth 
String Quartet No. 2


string quartet

Duration: 16'


I. Towers and Fountains

II. Double Duet (Romanze)

III. Drunken Poets

IV. Gears and Cycles – Interlocked

V. Village Vibes

VI. Night Grooves

This quartet is commissioned by the T’ang Quartet in celebration of their thirtieth anniversary as an ensemble. As with any relationship (or marriage!), playing together in a string quartet requires the tight-knit rapport to play in perfect harmony and synchrony, moving and breathing as one musical body. Naturally, the delicate balance of four personalities involves some sort of ‘give and take.’ Also marking Yong Siew Toh Conservatory’s 20th anniversary, ‘Back and Forth’ borrows from the institution’s theme of ‘Looking Back, Moving Forward’.


Conceptualised to showcase the versatility of the quartet, these six short movements draw inspiration from an eclectic mix of references. It ranges from awe-inspiring Singaporean landmarks, a confluence of ancient and modern cultures, to timeless sentiments. Also present are the juxtapositions between the fast and the slow, the past and the future, and of kampung and city life.


Men's Folio Interview, with Charmaine Tan:

Programme Notes (3 March 2023)

Straits Times Review:

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