In the May issue, violist Simon Aspell of the RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartet is asked to name one of the greatest chamber music pieces for viola. He selects the viola variation in the last movement of Beethoven's String Quartet op.74 'Harp':
'I think this variation stands in relief to the vigour of the variations either side – it's ultimately uplifting, but with some pathos. It displays the viola's expressive qualities to great effect. It is deeply personal and intimate. I like to think it is very conversational. The difficulty is in finding the appropriate fingerings and bowings that allow the music to flow effortlessly.'