Alfred Schnittke’s Third String Quartet

an intertextuality analysis




Alfred Schnittke, Intertextuality, Compositional process, Musical analysis


This is an analytical study of intertextual procedures in Alfred Schnittke's Third String Quartet (1983). The study intends to demonstrate how intertextual compositional elements (“texts”) are appropriated by the composer in the creation of his work. The texts are: the main theme of Beethoven’s Great Fugue op. 133, a motif of Orlando Di Lasso's Stabat Mater and Shostakovich’s DSCH monogram. To this end, this study discusses: the use of citations and allusions according to Schnittke; the genesis ans stricture of the String Quartet n° 3; and the way in which the texts approprieted by Schnittke are reframed in his work. The analysis demonstrated that Schnittke performs several transformations in the texts to adapt them to the structural context of Third String Quartet.


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Author Biography

João Francisco de Souza Corrêa, University Federal of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

He holds a Ph.D. in Music Composition from Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, UFRGS (2019). He holds a bachelor's degree in Guitar from Universidade Federal de Pelotas, UFPEL (2008) and a master's degree in Theory and Creation from Universidade Federal do Paraná, UFPR (2013). His research interests are intertextuality, composition, guitar, arrangement, musical analysis and music education. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow in Music at Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul and acts as a substitute professor in the Music programs at Universidade Federal do Pampa.


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How to Cite

Corrêa, João Francisco de Souza. 2021. “Alfred Schnittke’s Third String Quartet: An Intertextuality Analysis”. Per Musi, no. 40 (June):1-22.



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