'Little Requiem' is a small-scale and inventive composition by a composer who is one of the most unconventional figures of his generation in Russia. He manages to produce a striking effect with rather slender means. Despite the sophisticated techniques which derive from the New Music, the string quartet is very 'cantabile' (and sometimes the instrumentalists actually have to 'sing'). It simultaneously assumes the roles of a choir and an orchestra. The vocal part (soprano) is decidedly melodic and occasionally displays a penchant for 'expressionist' outbursts.