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The Bard Center Celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the Colorado Quartet with Recital on Sunday, May 4
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The Colorado Quartet, “a first-class ensemble that rises with panache to meet every challenge in the music” (Washington Post), celebrates its 25th anniversary with an afternoon recital at Bard College on Sunday, May 4. The program, presented by The Bard Center, is free and open to the public and begins at 3:00 p.m. in Olin Hall. No reservations are necessary; seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
The program features performances of Benjamin Britten’s String Quartet, No. 3, Op. 36; Alberto Ginastera’s Quartet No. 2; and Amy Beach’s Piano Quintet, Op. 67, with guest artist, pianist Sharon Bjorndal.
“We are thrilled to be playing a concert here at Bard to mark our 25th anniversary,” remarks Quartet first violinist, Julie Rosenfeld. “The Britten Quartet is one of the pieces we played in 1983 when we won both the first Banff International String Quartet Competition and the Naumburg Chamber Music Award, while the Ginastera Second Quartet is one of our all-time favorite pieces, as it combines the essence of South American native music with the forms of the Western String Quartet, producing something like ‘Bartók goes to Argentina.’ And we are honored to be playing the Amy Beach Piano Quintet with our wonderful colleague Sharon Bjorndal. So we have three little-known masterpieces of the 20th-century on this concert.”
The Colorado Quartet—Julie Rosenfeld and D. Lydia Redding, violins; Marka Gustavsson, viola; and Diane Chaplin, cello—have been quartet in residence at Bard since 2000. In May of 1983, the Quartet (officially founded in 1982) was awarded the two most prestigious prizes in the chamber music world: the Naumburg Chamber Music Award in New York, and first prize at the very first Banff International String Quartet Competition in Canada.
Performing in major cities across the globe, the quartet’s New York appearances have included the Mostly Mozart Festival, where they performed 20 Haydn quartets over a two-year period, as well as concerts in Carnegie Hall and at Lincoln Center. The ensemble regularly performs the complete Beethoven quartets, most recently in Berlin, and they are the first female quartet to have performed the Beethoven cycle in both North America and Europe.
The Colorado Quartet’s recordings of Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Brahms, and contemporary composers may be found on Parnassus, Mode, and Albany Records. Beginning with the occasion of the quartet’s 20th anniversary in 2003, the group recorded the first in a series of the complete Beethoven quartets, which will be released in 2009. In addition to serving on the faculty of the Music Program at Bard, the quartet’s members are also on the faculty of The Bard College Conservatory of Music.
Guest artist and visiting instructor in music at Bard, pianist Sharon Bjorndal has worked on more than 25 productions since 2001, including Carmen, Dead Man Walking, The Flying Dutchman, Macbeth, Rigoletto, and Turandot as an assistant chorus master at New York City Opera. In 2004 she served as guest chorus master at the Opera Company of Philadelphia for its production of Don Carlo, and she was the chorus master for recent productions of The Nose, Regina, and Genoveva at Bard SummerScape. A graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory and Manhattan School of Music, she returned to the later in 2003 to serve as chorus master for a production of Béatrice et Bénédict. She is organist and choirmaster at the Presbyterian Church of Upper Montclair, New Jersey, and maintains an active career as a collaborative pianist and has served as a studio accompanist for Michel Dubost and Marilyn Horne, among others.
This concert is made possible, in part, through the generosity of the Homeland Foundation and the Leon Levy Endowment at Bard College. For further information about the program, call The Bard Center at 845-758-7425.
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