The composition of the first string quartet “From My Life” was preceded by a period of fateful changes in Smetana’s life. In 1874 he lost his hearing. Two years later he moved with his family to Jabkenice in the countryside, which seemed to him like an expulsion; he suffered from his deafness and missed contact with like-minded company. He presented the string quartet as a conversation within a close circle of four friends who discuss what is tormenting them. It is a kind of passionate and resigned dialogue between a spirited person and his destiny. Smetana’s first string quartet soon became one of the most frequently performed works in the quartet repertoire.
The musical text of the new edition is based on the “Study Edition of the Works of Bedrich Smetana”, Volume XV – Chamber Music Works.