As winter sets in, the Australian String Quartet is warming up for its second national season tour with its new line up, violinists Dale Barltrop and Francesca Hiew, violist Stephen King and cellist Sharon Draper. The tour, aptly titled Tempesta, after Joe Chindamo’s featured string quartet, will commence in Sydney on 30 June before touring to Canberra, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth in early July.
The program begins with Webern’s Fünf Sätze for String Quartet op 5. This twelve minute work is both risky and exciting as it challenges the Quartet to work together as one instrument to explore a unique gestural sound world through melody, texture, rhythm and silence.
The Quartet’s second work in the program takes a journey back to the very origins of the string quartet with Haydn’s String Quartet in C Major op 20 no 2. This powerfully dramatic work, written by the father of the string quartet, has been described as one of the supreme achievements of the classical period.
Fast forward to the current millennium, the Quartet’s next work was composed in 2013 by brilliant Australian jazz pianist and composer, Joe Chindamo. Written in four contrasting movements, one can hear the influence of Chindamo’s jazz harmony in this piece, particularly in the slow opening of the second movement which gives way to a cheeky yet elegant waltz-like scherzo. ASQ violinist, Francesca Hiew said, “It's difficult putting this piece into a genre! Joe is an individual voice of many different characters that seem to whizz past you in this effervescent work.”
It is the final work on our program that brings us to the extreme tempest of the concert. Here, in his F minor quartet, Felix Mendelssohn’s grapples with the loss of his beloved sister Fanny in a work which was to be his last. This deeply moving work is a tumultuous journey of emotion from beginning to end as the Quartet paints in vivid colours the sound of Mendelssohn’s inner storm. Hiew says, “It is a very human illustration of the grief and fragility of a broken man. It's an incredibly moving work and unlike any of his other quartets.”
Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Adelaide, the ASQ was established in 1985 and has had a major impact on the musical life of Australia, commissioning, premiering and performing many works by leading Australian composers. The ASQ is privileged to perform on a matched set of instruments handcrafted by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini between c.1743-1784. The exquisite instruments are on loan to the ASQ for their exclusive use through the generosity of Ulrike Klein and Ngeringa Arts.
For further information on the ASQ and the Tempesta tour visit the website at asq.com.au or phone 1800 040 444 for details. ENDS
For further media information: Angelina Zucco, Chief Executive, Australian String Quartet Ph: 0402 642 121 / E: [email protected] / asq.com.au
Australian String Quartet, Chief Executive, Australian String Quartet
With a rich history spanning over 30 years, the Australian String Quartet (ASQ) has a strong national profile as an Australian chamber music group of excellence, performing at the highest international level. From its home base at the University of Adelaide, Elder Conservatorium of Music, the ASQ delivers a vibrant annual artistic program encompassing performances, workshops, commissions and education projects across Australia and abroad.
P: +61 8 8313 4775
M: 0402 642 121
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