The adventurous, genre-defying string quartet Brooklyn Rider makes their Atlanta debut on Friday, April 12 at 8 p.m. in Emory's Schwartz Center for Performing Arts. The evening's program showcases the ensemble's commitment to new repertoire and fresh interpretations of established pieces, presenting Beethoven to original works.
The evening opens with Lev "Ljova" Zhurbin's fiery Klezmer tune "Budget Bulgar" followed by Béla Bartók's String Quartet No. 2, Sz. 67, written during the post WWI European upheaval in mourning of a lost era. A new composition by Colin Jacobsen rounds out the first half of the program. Jacobsen's "Three Miniatures for String Quartet" honors his close friendship with master musician Kayhan Kalhor, and the rich music of Kalhor's Persian culture.
In the second half of the program, the quartet presents works from their 2012 album "Seven Steps" (In A Circle Records), one of NPR's Listener Picks for the Year's Best Albums (So Far), beginning with "Seven Steps," their first group composition. "Seven Steps" plays with the number seven-moving through seven very short fragments, just as Beethoven's Op. 131 is written in seven movements, and suggests the spiritual world explored by Beethoven in his late works.
Following "Seven Steps," Brooklyn Rider will present a dynamic interpretation of Beethoven's String Quartet No. 14 in C-sharp minor, Op. 131-the recording of which "Time Out Chicago" called "Beethoven through a different lens...a wonderful record to challenge seasoned listeners and embrace hesitant newcomers."
Born out of a desire to use the rich medium of the string quartet as a vehicle for communication across a large span of history and geography, Brooklyn Rider is equally devoted to the interpretation of existing quartet literature and to the creation of new works. Combining a wildly eclectic repertoire with a gripping performance style that is attracting legions of fans, Brooklyn Rider draws critical acclaim from classical, world and rock critics. NPR credits the quartet with "recreating the 300-year old form of string quartet as a vital and creative 21st century ensemble." The musicians play in concert halls and clubs, in venues as varied as Joe's Pub in New York City, the San Francisco Jazz Festival, Todai-ji Temple in Japan, the Library of Congress, and the South By Southwest Festival (SXSW). Earlier this year, the quartet participated in a recording project with fourteen-time Grammy-winner Béla Fleck and last season made their Carnegie Hall debut at Zankel Hall.
Quartet members include Johnny Gandelsman, violin; Colin Jacobsen, violin; Nicholas Cords, viola; and Eric Jacobsen, cello.
The concert is part of the 2012-2013 Flora Glenn Candler Concert Series. Single concert tickets are $45. Details about the April 12 event can be found at http://www.arts.emory.edu/brooklyn