Besides performing often on CBC radio, the quartet gave many concerts in Toronto, toured Ontario frequently and Western Canada in 1945, and played occasionally in Quebec and the Maritimes. Its repertoire, in addition to the standard quartets, included those of Bartók, Bridge, Britten, Dohnányi, Fauré, Glinka, Jongen, Kreisler, Turina, and Wolf. Among Canadian works, the quartet premiered James Gayfer's String Quartet (1944), Weinzweig's String Quartet No. 2 (1947), and Morawetz' String Quartet No. 2 (1956). It also performed Pépin's String Quartet No. 1 and Freedman's Five Pieces for String Quartet.
The famous name of its leader ensured the Parlow String Quartet's status as Canada's best-known ensemble of the kind during its 15 years before the public. With the Dembeck and McGill quartets it perpetuated quartet-playing with dignity and style in the period between the demise of the Hart House String Quartet and the advent of the Orford String Quartet.
After a concert at the RCMT, the Toronto critic John Kraglund described the quartet: 'Miss Parlow is at her best when given an opportunity for robust expression, and Mr. Mamott is... the most reliable member under any circumstances. Andrew Benac, second violin, and Stanley Solomon, viola, are quick to follow the lead of the other two' (Globe and Mail, 21 Jan 1957).
A scrapbook pertaining to the activities of the Parlow String Quartet up to 1951 is included among the Hersenhoren papers at the National Library of Canada.
Author Lorna Hassell
Pépin Quartet No. 1 - Weinzweig String Quartet No. 1, 2nd movement. 1950. RCI 12/(Pépin) 4-ACM 5
Reger Quartet in F Sharp, lst movement - Freedman Five Pieces for String Quartet. 1950. RCI 43/(Freedman) 6-ACM 8
Links to Other Sites
Canadian Music Centre
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The String Quartet in Canada
The full text of a thesis that examines string quartet performance and composition between 1790 to 1989. From the University of Toronto.