TUESDAY 19 OKTOBER 2021
QUATUOR AROD (France)
instead of the Borodin String Quartet.
So, what is this “Arod”? A forgotten composer, a mythical city, a mysterious acrostic? Why not, indeed. In fact, Le Quatuor Arod chose as their tutelary figure a horse imagined by Tolkien in The Lord of the Rings. A symbol of strength and ardour (his name means “agile, swift”), he also embodied a spirit of freedom and companionship given that the elf Legolas provided him with a bareback horse, without reins.
TUESDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2021
MATANGI QUARTET (Netherlands)
|Daniel Torrico Menacho||Violin|
|Arno van der Vuurst||Cello|
|Beethoven||String Quartet no. 8 in e opus 59/2 ‘Razumovski’|
|Shostakovich||Adagio and Allegretto for String Quartet|
|Dvorák||String Quartet in F opus 96 ‘American’|
The Matangi Quartet was founded in 1999 by four young musicians then studying at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague and the Conservatory of Rotterdam. In 2003 Matangi completed the two-year, full-time course at the Netherlands String Quartet Academy under the direction of Stefan Metz (cellist, Orlando Quartet). At the Academy, the Matangi Quartet had the opportunity to take lessons from international renowned musicians, including the members of the Amadeus Quartet. The quartet also received intensive mentoring from Henk Guittart (violist, Schönberg Quartet) for several years.
The Matangi Quartet has since developed into a regular performer in the Dutch chamber musicscene and abroad. With their impassioned playing and smart presentation, Maria-Paula, Daniel, Karsten and Arno epitomize a new generation of classical musicians. They are often characterized by words such as communicative, provocative and refreshingly versatile. The Matangi Quartet has shared the stage with various top-class classical musicians such as Miranda van Kralingen, Tania Kross, Ivo Janssen, Paolo Giacometti and Severin von Eckardstein. The quartet has also been invited to perform in various festivals, including the Delft Chamber Music Festival, the Aix-en-Provence Festival, the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Carthage Festival in Tunisia, the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai, the International Conservatoire Festival in St Petersburg and the North Sea Jazz festival in the Netherlands.
In 2002 Matangi was awarded the prestigious Kersjes van de Groenekan Award, an annual prize awarded to exceptional chamber music talent in the Netherlands. In 2008 the quartet won third prize at the International Joseph Joachim Chamber Music Competition in Weimar. The Matangi Quartet released several CDs issued by Challenge Records International which all received great critical acclaim. The latest releases were the CDs ‘Mendelssohn’ (2009), ‘Candybox’ (2010) and 'Haydn's Nature' (2013). Together with viola da gamba player Ralph Rousseau the quartet won the Edison Audience Award 2009, for their CD ‘Chansons d’amour’ (Challenge Records 2008). The CD ‘Testimoni’ with Martin Fondse (composition and vibrandoneon) and Eric Vloeimans (trumpet) was awarded the Edison Jazz prize 2012.
Matangi regularly participates in innovative crossover projects and has performed in collaboration with artists such as cabaretiers Herman van Veen and Youp van ’t Hek, bandoneon player Carel Kraayenhof, jazz trumpeter Eric Vloeimans, jazz pianist Michiel Braam, DJ Kypski, jazz vocalists Mathilde Santing and Renske Taminiau, singer songwriters Lori Liebermann and Tom McRae.These pioneering excursions beyond the borders of classical music have resulted in Matangi winning an enthusiastic new public for the string quartet. No less important, this has provided a source of inspiration for infusing performances of the rich classical repertoire built up over the past 250 years – from Haydn to Adès – with new élan. For essentially, the Matangi are focused on just one thing: letting the audience palpably experience the energy, passion and excitement that is inherent in all good music.
All four musicians perform on instruments of Dutch workmanship. The cello and first violin have been provided on loan by the Dutch National Musical Instrument Foundation.
|Mendelssohn||String Quartet no. 2 opus 13|
|Tschaikovsky||String Quartet no. 1 opus 11|
“Passion, precision, warmth, a gold blend: these are the trademarks of this excellent Israeli string quartet.”
Such was the New York Times' impression of the Jerusalem Quartet. Since the ensemble's founding in 1993 and subsequent 1996 debut, the four Israeli musicians have embarked on a journey of growth and maturation. This journey has resulted in a wide repertoire and stunning depth of expression, which carries on the string quartet tradition in a unique manner. The ensemble has found its core in a warm, full, human sound and an egalitarian balance between high and low voices. This approach allows the quartet to maintain a healthy relationship between individual expression and a transparent and respectful presentation of the composer's work. It is also the drive and motivation for the continuing refinement of its interpretations of the classical repertoire as well as exploration of new epochs.
The Jerusalem Quartet is a regular and beloved guest on the world's great concert stages. With regular visits to North America, the quartet has performed in cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Washington, and Cleveland as well as in the Ravinia Festival. In Europe, the quartet enjoys an enthusiastic reception with regular appearances in London's Wigmore hall, Tonhalle Zürich, Munich Herkulessaal, Theatre des Champs-Elysées, as well as special guest performances at the Auditorium du Louvre Paris, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg and festivals such as Salzburg, Verbier, Schleswig-Holstein, Schubertiade Schwarzenberg, Rheingau, Saint Petersburg white Nights and many others.
The Jerusalem Quartet records exclusively for Harmonia Mundi. The quartet's recordings, particularly the albums featuring Haydn's string quartets and Schubert's "Death and the Maiden", have been honored with numerous awards such as the Diapason d'Or and the BBC Music Magazine Award for chamber music. In 2018, the quartet released an album of Dvorak's String Quintet Op.97 and Sextet Op.48, and a much-awaited recording of the celebrated quartets by Ravel and Debussy. In the spring of 2019, the quartet released a unique album exploring Jewish music in Central Europe between the wars and its far-reaching influence. Israeli Soprano Hila Baggio joined the quartet to perform a collection of Yiddish Cabaret songs from Warsaw in the 1920s.
TUESDAY 1 FEBRUARY 2022
|Gideon den Herder||Cello|
|Haydn||Trio in E-flat major (Hoboken XV:30)|
|Schubert||Trio in E-flat major D.929|
The Van Baerle Trio was founded in 2004 by pianist Hannes Minnaar, violinist Maria Milstein and cellist Gideon den Herder. The trio takes its name from the street where it all started: Van Baerle Street, Amsterdam. The three musicians met there whilst studying at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, a stone‘s throw from the Concertgebouw, which they now consider their musical home.
The Van Baerle Trio was formed under the guidance of Dmitri Ferschtman and received lessons from Ferenc Rados and Claus-Christian Schuster, among others. Their encounter with Menahem Pressler in 2008 was a huge inspiration to the three musicians, who subsequently played for him on several occasions.
After winning the 2011 Vriendenkrans Competition in the Concertgebouw and performing there on numerous occasions since, the Van Baerle Trio was promoted by the Concertgebouw as ECHO Rising Stars 2013/14, a tour which took the trio to major venues across Europe, including Vienna‘s Musikverein, the London Barbican, Cité de la Musique in Paris, L‘Auditori in Barcelona and the Philharmonie in Cologne. The Van Baerle Trio had already established its international reputation, after being awarded top prizes at the ARD International Music Competition in Munich in 2013 and the Lyon International Chamber Music Competition in 2011, as well as receiving the audience prize at both contests, and winning the Kersjes Prize in 2012, the highest chamber music award in the Netherlands.
The Van Baerle Trio’s highly praised discography has featured a debut CD of works by Saint-Saëns, Loevendie and Ravel, which received an Edison Award in 2013. This was followed by an album dedicated to Mendelssohn’s piano trios, including the world premiere recording of the early version of his Piano Trio in D minor. Most recently the trio has recorded all the Beethoven piano trios, with the final disc, the Triple Concerto with the Residentie Orkest The Hague under the baton of Jan Willem de Vriend, released in Spring 2020.
Maria Milstein plays a violin by Michel Angelo Bergonzi and Gideon den Herder plays a cello by Giuseppe dall‘Aglio, both kindly on loan from the Dutch Musical Instruments Foundation.
Eager to share their experience with the next generation of musicians, members of the trio have been teaching at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam since 2014.
TUESDAY 1 MARCH 2022
|Severin von Eckardstein||Piano|
|Isabelle van Keulen||Viola|
|Elgar||Piano Quintet opus 84 in a|
|Schumann||Piano Quintet opus 44 in Es|
The German pianist is the unifying factor of this quintet, which now performs here under the name Severin von Eckardstein & Friends. All also have a wonderful music career of their own. Severin von Eckardstein is, among other things, a welcome guest at the Concertgebouw in the unfortunately recently discontinued series of master pianists. His poetic sound language is clear and aggressive when the music demands it. In 2003 he won the prestigious Queen Elisabeth competition in Brussels! The Russian violinist Alexander Sitkovetsky is, besides being a soloist and chamber musician, nowadays also very active as a conductor and artistic director of various international festivals. Unfortunately, due to illness, a performance with his Sitkovetsky trio in Diligentia was canceled in October 2017. The violin playing of the German Franziska Hölscher is notable for its expressive power and enchanting tone. Her versatility is striking as a soloist, chamber musician and festival director. “Our” Isabelle van Keulen, active here as a viola player, and cellist Quirine Viersen need no further explanation here. They have proven themselves as celebrated soloists and ensemble players at the top both at home and abroad.
Benjamin Nyffenegger grew up in Aargau, Switzerland, and studied cello with Magdalena Sterki-Hauri. From 1999 he was taught by Walter Grimmer, a Swiss cellist in classical music. In 2002 he entered the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste. Thomas Grossenbacher, principal cellist of Tonhalle Orchester Zurich, has taught him since 2004. In 2005 he graduated with distinction.
In 2004 he was allowed to perform with the Aargauer Symphonie Orchester. In 2005 and 2006 he did an internship with Tonhalle Orchester Zurich. From September 2006 to August 2007 he was interim solo cellist with Sinfonieorchester St. Gallen. Since 2008 he has been co-leader of the cellos in the Tonhalle Orchester Zurich. On a performance of Tchaikovsky's Rococo Variations with the Tonhalle Orchester in 2017, a reviewer wrote that Nyffenegger had "technically perfect mastery of the demanding cello part
TUESDAY 19 APRIL 2022
|Joris van Rijn||Violin|
|Emi Ohi Resnick||Violin|
|Mozart||String Quartet KV 458 ( “The hunt”)|
|Widmann||String Quartet (“Jagd”)|
|Schubert||“String Quartet no. 14 (“Der Tod und das Mädchen”)|
Inspired by the famous Dutch painter Jacob van Ruysdael, known for his impressive landscapes and dramatic skies, the Ruysdael Quartet has become renowned for its intensive playing and nuanced sound palette.
The Ruysdael Quartet was formed in 1996, when all members were studying at the Conservatory in The Hague. In addition to their regular teachers they had lessons with the Amadeus Quartet, the Hagen Quartet and the Quatuor Mosaïques. Over a two-year period, they studied with the Alban Berg Quartet at the “Hochschule für Musik” in Cologne. Within a few years the Ruysdael Quartet established its name both in the Netherlands and abroad, and has ever since been regularly invited to take part in festivals and masterclasses, resulting in performances not only in Europe but also in the USA, Japan and Australia.
The Ruysdael Quartet received a full scholarship to attend the ‘International Chamber Music Academy Prague-Vienna-Budapest’ (1999-2001) where they won the Bela Bartók Prize (1999), the Alban Berg Prize (2000) and the Tomastik-Infeld Prize (2001) with an invitation to make a recording for the Austrian National Radio.
The quartet were winners of the ‘Charles Hennen International Chamber Music Competition 2000’ in Holland and were awarded the ‘Prix de la SACEM’ at the International String Quartet Competition 2001 in Bordeaux. In March 2002 they received the Press Prize and the AVRO Prize in the ‘Vriendenkrans’ competition in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. More recently they were recipients of the prestigious “Kersjes van de Groenekan” Prize, a major musical award in the Netherlands.
Alongside performing the classical string quartet repertoire the Ruysdael Quartet are frequently involved in contemporary projects. At the String Quartet Biënnale Amsterdam 2018 there was intensive collaboration with Louis Andriessen en in 2005 they toured with the eminent Dutch composer Jacob ter Veldhuis with an innovative programme based around his 3rd quartet. In 2006 the Quartet perfomed both Louis Toebosch’s string quartets and in 2009 Eric Verbugt wrote his “Aufgerichtet, untereinander” especially for the quartet. Next to this the Ruysdaels regularly play together with prominent guest musicians like Raphael Wallfisch, Gavriel Lipkind, Dmitri Ferschtmann, Igor Roma and Charles Neidich.
In June 2015 the first Zoom! chamber music festival took place. The Ruysdaels are founders of this annual event. Next to the quartet itself many international artists have been performing, like Nino Gvetadze, the Doric String Quartet, pianists Alexander Madzar, Simon Crawford-Phillips and clarinettist and composer Jörg Widmann.
The Ruysdael Quartet has recorded 5 CD’s.