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A Mid-Winter Chamber Music Week
by Jan Jezioro
The Miró Quartet and the Trio Settecento
The Slee Beethoven Cycle at UB
What a difference a few months makes. When the members of the Miró Quartet, violinists Daniel Ching and William Fedkenheuer, violist John Largess and cellist Joshua Gindele played the first three installments of the 59th complete Slee Beethoven String Quartet Cycle back at the end of last September, both they and the members of audience were able to enjoy the exceptionally fine early fall weather. When the Miró Quartet returns this weekend to wrap up the final three installments in the series there is every indication that the group, Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Texas at Austin, will be facing single digit temperatures, and you guessed it, a lot of snow. Nevertheless, based on the group’s thoughtfully original interpretations of Beethoven’s music last September, it is highly recommended that you brave the elements and make it to Slee Hall on the UB Amherst campus this weekend, to avoid future regrets.
Both the Friday and the Saturday concert begin at 7:30pm while the Sunday concert starts at 3pm. Friday’s program includes the Quartet in F minor, Op. 95, “Serioso”, the early Quartet in B-flat Major, Op. 18, No. 6 and the late Quartet in A minor, Op. 132. The Quartet in A Major, Op. 18, No. 5 and the Quartet in B-flat Major, Op. 130 are featured on Saturday’s program. The series wraps up on Sunday with the Quartet in C minor, Op. 18, No. 4, the only minor-key work in the composer’s first set of quartets, followed by the Quartet in F Major, Op. 135, Beethoven’s final work in the genre, and wraps up with the middle Razumovsky quartet, the Quartet in E minor, Op. 59, No. 2.
The Miró also presents a master class on Saturday, February 14th from 11am to 1pm in Baird Recital Hall that is free and open for public observation.
Tickets: $15/10; free for UB students.
Trio Settecento at Kleinhans
Historically informed performances of baroque music on authentic instruments, by highly accomplished professional musicians remain, for whatever reasons, a genuine rarity in the greater Buffalo area. Certainly, fans of the genre can enjoy listening to the excellent, nationally syndicated Sunday Baroque program on WNED FM, for four hours every Sunday morning, but true aficianados crave hearing this music live. Luckily, the Buffalo Chamber Music Society, under the leadership of its artistic director Clem Fleshler, is presenting the Trio Settecento, one of the most highly sought after American authentic instrument ensembles specializing in music from the Baroque era at their next event in the Mary Seaton Room of Kleinhans Music Hall on Tuesday, February 17 at 8pm. WNED-FM program radio host Peter Hall will moderate a “Chat with the Artists” preceding the concert at 7:15pm.
The Trio Settecento is made up of Rachel Barton Pine on baroque violin and viola d’amore, John Mark Rozendaal on viola da gamba and baroque cello, with David Schraderon harpsichord, positiv organ and fortepiano. Rachel Barton Pine, who survived a devastating commuter train accident, came back to develop a strong career as a touring, virtuoso violin soloist in the standard repertoire. One of the most successful of her many CD’s includes a pairing, for the first time, of Beethoven’s mighty concerto for violin with the concerto of the composer who inspired him, Franz Clement.
Yet, excelling in the traditional repertoire for the violin, beginning with the works of Haydn and Mozart and continuing well into the music of the 20th century was not enough for Rachel Barton Pine and she started to seriously explore the world of earlier music in the mid 1990’s.
Pine studied with Almita Vamos whose teaching lineage can be traced back in an unbroken thread through Louis Persinger, Eugène Ysaÿe, Henri Vieuxtemps, Charles-Auguste de Bériot, G. B. Viotti, Gaetano Pugnani, and G. B. Somis to Corelli himself. The greatest master of all the composer/violin virtuosos, Corelli led the way in gaining a starring role for the violin, and his music, along with that of other Baroque masters will be featured on this program.
“My exploration of the sound world of the 17th and 18th Centuries has evolved significantly”, observed Pine, “and in 2002, I began performing this music on a 1770 Nicola Gagliano in original condition. This beautiful instrument has had a remarkable effect on my capability to be faithful to the early composers’ intents and to bring their music most fully to life. I am so grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with John Mark and David. Their passion for music, boundless thirst for knowledge, and mastery of their instruments makes our time together an exciting musical adventure and increasingly rewarding. The longer we play together, the more we breathe as one, anticipate each others’ nuances, and discover increased freedom and spontaneity in our improvisations. And through all these years of intense rehearsing, we remain the best of friends.”
Tickets: $20/$10; free admission for Middle/High School students.
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