All posts by Patrick_McCarty

Final concert of the season has been cancelled

Dear Friends of Chamber Music,

We regret to announce that the final two concerts of the CMSW six-concert series have been cancelled—the Parker Quartet on March 24, and the Quatuor Danel with pianist Lise de la Salle on April 21.  This was done in conformance with state, county and Williamsburg mandates to close public venues in an attempt to quash the spread of COVID-19, and with genuine concern for the health and wellbeing of our audience, artists, and broader community.

With an abiding faith that this too shall pass, please know CMSW will bring you another outstanding six-concert concert series next season.  Current subscribers will receive a descriptive brochure and subscription order form by mail soon.  Those who have yet to join our loyal audience and have requested such information will receive a similar mailing soon.  If you wish to be added to that list of recipients, please send an email with your address to info@chambermusicwilliamsburg.org.

Thank you for your patience and continuing support as we all work through this difficult time.  Stay safe, stay well, and plan to join us next fall!

Best regards,

Jim Coomer, president
Chamber Music Society of Williamsburg

March 24 concert with the Parker Quartet must be postponed indefinitely

Dear Friends of Chamber Music,

We announce with regret that our concert of March 24 with the Parker Quartet must be postponed indefinitely. Given the issues posed by COVID-19, and the closure of the Williamsburg Library Theatre for the immediate future, the health and wellbeing of our audience, artists, and the broader community warrant precedence. If current conditions abate, we will complete our season with pianist Lise de la Salle and Quatuor Danel on April 21.

Please stay informed through our website and Facebook page and check for updates with the Williamsburg Library and other government sources. As events evolve, we will be in contact with our performers, the library, and with you regarding concert dates and subscriptions for our 2020-21 CMSW concert series. Thank you for your patience and continuing support as we all work through these difficult circumstances.

Stay safe and well.

Best regards,

Jim Coomer, president
Chamber Music Society of Williamsburg

Lise de la Salle and Quatuor Danel – April 21, 2020

Lise de la Salle | photography by Stéphane Gallois
Quatuor Danel | photography by Marco Borggreve

The Quatuor Danel returns to Williamsburg after an enthusiastic reception in 2016. It brings a new collaboration with the gifted and exciting pianist Lise de la Salle.

Founded in 1991, the Quatuor Danel is a remarkable ensemble of the talented Marc Danel, violin; Gilles Millet, violin; Vlad Bogdanas, viola; and Yovan Markovitch, cello. Since its founding the Quatuour Danel has been at the forefront of the international music scene with important concert performances worldwide and a row of groundbreaking recordings.

A native of France, Lise de la Salle came to international attention at age 16 with a Bach/Liszt recording. In 2008, the 20-year-old was noted for recording the first concertos of Liszt, Prokofiev and Shostakovich. During one US tour, her playing inspired a Washington Post critic to write, “For much of the concert, the audience had to remember to breathe…”

This collaboration is not to be missed!

Lise de la Salle website

Quatuor Danel website

Parker Quartet – March 24, 2020

Inspiring performances, luminous sound, and exceptional musicianship are the hallmarks of the Grammy Award-winning Parker Quartet. Renowned for its dynamic interpretations and polished, expansive colors, the group has rapidly distinguished itself as one of the preeminent ensembles of its generation. The Quartet has appeared at the world’s most important venues since its founding in 2002.

The  Parker  Quartet has  distinguished  itself  with acclaimed  recordings  for  Nimbus,  Zig-Zag Territoires,  Innova  Records,  and  Naxos.  The  Quartet’s  most  recent  recording  featuring Mendelssohn’s Quartets Op. 44, Nos. 1 and 3, was widely lauded by the international press. The Quartet’s debut commercial recording of Bartók’s String Quartets Nos. 2 and 5 for Zig-Zag Territoires (July 2007) won praise from Gramophone: “The Parkers’ Bartók spins the illusion of spontaneous improvisation… they have absorbed the language; they have the confidence to play freely with the music and the instinct to bring it off.” Their Naxos recording of György Ligeti’s complete works for  string  quartet won the  2011 Grammy Award for  Best Chamber Music Performance (the last string quartet to win this category). In April 2016 Augusta Read Thomas’s world premiere recording of Helix Spirals for string quartet on “Of Being is a Bird” was released on Nimbus Records.

The Parker Quartet’s members hold graduate degrees in performance and chamber music from the New England Conservatory of Music and the Juilliard School, and the Quartet was part of the New England  Conservatory’s  prestigious  Professional  String  Quartet  Training  Program from 2006–2008. Some of their most influential mentors include the original members of the Cleveland Quartet, Kim Kashkashian, György Kurtág, Zakhar Bron, Robert Lipsett, Mark Steinberg, and Rainer Schmidt.

Parker Quartet website

Trio con Brio Copenhagen – February 25, 2020

“Glowing reports hold true. The Trio con Brio Copenhagen clearly occupies a lofty perch in today’s musical scene.” – Washington Post

Acknowledged as one of the world’s finest piano trios, the Trio con Brio Copenhagen are about to celebrate their twentieth anniversary. To mark the occasion, Orchid Classics will be releasing their multi-volume traversal of the complete Beethoven Piano Trios.

The Trio was born out of an idea of the coming together of ‘musical pairs’ – of the two Korean-born sisters, Soo-Kyung Hong (cello) and Soo-Jin Hong (violin), with Soo-Kyung and her husband, Danish pianist Jens Elvekjaer. They quickly gained a reputation for their fresh and contemporary approach to the core repertoire and won almost all of the majorcompetitions for piano trio. Today they are regularly heard at the world’s leading venues andconcert series, among them, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Wigmore Hall, Berlin Pierre Boulez-Saal, the Concertgebouw and many more.

Leading composers have dedicated works to the Trio, including Per Nørgård, BentSørensen’s and Sven-David Sandström. And reviews are fulsome. “One of the greatest performances of chamber music I’ve ever encountered,” praised American Record Guide.Gramophone wrote, “Superb…Any group would be hard-pressed to imitate this blend of verveand poise…” Their Mendelssohn album was chosen by the UK’s Classic FM as the Best Chamber Music Disc of the year.

The Trio are artistic directors of the Copenhagen Chamber Music Festival, the Chamber Music Festival on Lundsgaard Estate in Kerteminde and the Hellerup Chamber Music Society in Copenhagen. Soo-Jin plays an Andrea Guarneri violin, Soo-Kyung plays aGrancino cello, and Jens is Denmark’s first Steinway Artist. Both string players are endorsed by Jagar Strings and Thomastik-Infeld Vienna.

Trio con Brio Copenhagen website

Harlem Quartet – November 19, 2019

Harlem Quartet advances diversity in classical music while engaging new audiences with varied repertoire that includes works by minority composers. Their mission to share their passion with a wider audience has taken them around the world; from a 2009 performance at The White House for President Obama and First Lady, Michelle Obama, to a highly successful tour of South Africa in 2012, and numerous venues in between. The musically versatile ensemble has performed with such distinguished artists as Itzhak Perlman, Ida Kavafian, Carter Brey, Fred Sherry, Misha Dichter, Jeremy Denk, and Paquito D’Rivera. The quartet also collaborated with jazz masters Chick Corea and Gary Burton on the album Hot House, a 2013 multi-Grammy Award winning release.

New York-based HARLEM QUARTET, currently serving a three-year residency at London’s Royal College of Music, has been praised for its “panache” by The New York Times and hailed in the Cincinnati Enquirer for “bringing a new attitude to classical music, one that is fresh, bracing and intelligent.” It has also won plaudits from such veteran musicians as GRAMMY-winning woodwind virtuoso Ted Nash of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, who declared in a May 2018 Playbill article, “Harlem Quartet is one of the greatest string quartets I have ever heard. They can play anything.” Since its public debut at Carnegie Hall in 2006, the ensemble has thrilled audiences and students in 47 states as well as in the U.K., France, Belgium, Brazil, Panama, Canada, Venezuela, Japan, and South Africa.

Harlem Quartet website

Musica Pacifica – October 15, 2019

Musica Pacifica has, since its founding in 1990, become widely recognized as one of America’s premier baroque ensembles, lauded for both the dazzling virtuosity and the warm expressiveness of its performances.

The press describes them as “some of the finest baroque musicians in America” (American Record Guide) and “among the best in the world” (Alte Musik Aktuell).

They have performed on some of the most prestigious concert series in the U.S. and abroad. Their appearance on the mainstage at the Boston Early Music Festival in 2015 was reviewed as “little short of sensational… astonishing… breath-taking throughout” (The Boston Musical Intelligencer).

Musica Pacifica website

Neave Trio – September 17, 2019

Since forming in 2010, Neave Trio – violinist Anna Williams, cellist Mikhail Veselov, and pianist Eri Nakamura – has earned enormous praise for its engaging, cutting-­edge performances. WQXR explains, “‘Neave’ is actually a Gaelic name meaning ‘bright’ and ‘radiant’, both of which certainly apply to this trio’s music making.” The Boston Musical Intelligencer included Neave in its “Best of 2014” and “Best of 2016” roundups, writing, “it is inconceivable that they will not soon be among the busiest chamber ensembles going,” and “their unanimity, communication, variety of touch, and expressive sensibility rate first tier.”

Neave Trio strives to champion new works by living composers and reach wider audiences through innovative concert presentations, regularly collaborating with artists of all mediums. These collaborations include performances with the Blythe Barton Dance Company; projection artist Ryan Brady; the interactive concert series “STEIN2.0,” with composer Amanuel Zarzowski; Klee Musings by acclaimed American composer Augusta Read Thomas, which was premiered by Neave; the upcoming premiere of Eric Nathan’s Missing Words V, sponsored by Coretet; and an upcoming short film based on the tango music of Astor Piazzolla.

Neave Trio website

REBEL – April 9, 2019

Selections by: Corelli, Vivaldi, Leclair, Handel, Fasch, and Telemann

Hailed by the New York Times as “Sophisticated and Beguiling” and praised by the Los Angeles Times for their “astonishingly vital music-making,” the award-winning, New York-based ensemble, REBEL (pronounced “Re-BEL”) is one of North America’s top-tier ensembles specializing in 17th- & 18th-century repertoire performed on period instruments.

Named after the innovative French Baroque composer Jean-Féry Rebel (1666-1747), REBEL was formed in The Netherlands in 1991; that same year the ensemble took first prize in the Van Wassenaer International Competition in Utrecht and gave their critically-acclaimed American début in New York City in 1992.  Since then the ensemble has garnered an impressive international reputation, enchanting diverse audiences with their unique style and their virtuosic, highly expressive and provocative approach to the baroque and classical repertoire. The core formation of two violins, recorder/traverso, cello/ viola da gamba and harpsichord/ organ/ fortepiano expands with additional strings, winds, brass, theorbo and vocalists, as needed.

Arguably the most aired American baroque ensemble in the U.S. today, REBEL is regularly featured on the nationally syndicated shows Performance Today and Sunday Baroque, and has appeared several times on MPR’s St. Paul Sunday. REBEL remains the only period instrument ensemble ever to have been awarded an artists’ residency at National Public Radio, has been featured on BBC’s Radio 3 and has recorded over twenty CDs on Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, Naxos, Dorian, Sono Luminus, ATMA, Hänssler Classic and Bridge Records.

Highlights of the 2017-’18 season include engagements in San Antonio, TX, Joplin, MO, Tulsa, OK, Pittsburgh, PA, Columbus OH and Concord, NH, and collaborations with soprano Yulia Van Doren in November 2017, and baroque dancers Thomas Baird and Paige Whitley-Bauguess in March 2018.

Telegraph Quartet – March 12, 2019

  • Mozart: String Quartet in D, K. 575 “Prussian”
  • Weinberg: Quartet No. 6 in e minor, Op. 35
  • Intermission
  • Dvorak: Quartet in E-flat, Op 51, No. 10 “Slavonic”

The Telegraph Quartet was formed in 2013 with an equal passion for the  standard chamber music repertoire as well as contemporary and non-standard repertoire, alike.  Described by the San Francisco Chronicle in 2017 as “…an incredibly valuable addition to the cultural landscape” and “powerfully adept… with a combination of brilliance and subtlety,” the Telegraph Quartet was most recently awarded the prestigious 2016 Walter W. Naumburg Chamber Music Award. Past prizes include the Grand Prize at the 2014 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition.  The Quartet has since gone on to perform in concert halls, music festivals, and academic institutions from Los Angeles and New York to Italy and Taiwan, including Carnegie Hall, San Francisco’s Herbst Recital Hall and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Chamber Masters Series and at festivals including the Chautauqua Institute, Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival, and the Emilia Romagna Festival.  In 2016, the Quartet was invited as one of a handful of emerging professional string quartets from around the world to perform in Paris, France at the Biennale de quatuors à cordes, a showcase for major concert presenters of Europe and Asia taking place at the Philharmonie de Paris.

The Telegraph Quartet gave its first Carnegie Hall appearance in Weill Recital Hall in 2015 along with violinist Ian Swensen and pianist Jeff LaDeur and the Quartet will return to Carnegie Hall in 2018 for its Naumburg Award Recital featuring the world premiere of Robert Sirota’s third string quartet. Notable collaborations have included projects with cellist Norman Fischer, pianist Simone Dinnerstein and the Henschel Quartett. A fervent champion of contemporary and 20th century repertoire, the Telegraph Quartet has co-commissioned John Harbison’s String Quartet No. 6, which is scheduled for its West-Coast premiere in the fall of 2017 at San Francisco State University’s Morrison Artist Series.  In 2017 the Quartet plans to release its debut album featuring works by Anton Webern, Benjamin Britten, and Leon Ki­­­rchner.