Sunday, December 6, 2009

An all-star chamber concert this week

I was so busy last week trying to reach a couple of the musicians playing at the chamber music concert at the Columbia Museum of Art and the Fine Arts Center in Camden this week that I left the concert off my glorified week-in-the- arts listing. 

Still haven’t heard from them, but I did hear from another musician who happened to mention that he was sorry he was going to be out of town and would miss the “concert of the year.” 

I actually hate to write something as "promotional" as this, but it's what I have and what I have time for and you should know about it.

So even if I don’t get to talk to the musicians in advance I’ll tell you who they are and what they’re playing and why this other musician, who knows a billion times more about music than I, says what he says.

(By the way this is the Charles Wadsworth and Friends series, although Wadsworth has retired.)

Violinists Jennifer Frautschi and Jesse Mills, violists Hsin-Yun Huang and Nicholas Cords, cellist Peter Wiley and cellist/host/series organizer Edward Arron are all world-class soloists as well as ensemble players. Wiley, Frautschi and Cords are making their debuts on the series.

Since 2001 Wiley has been a member of the Guarneri Quartet, considered one of the best and longest-running in the world. The quartet was founded in 1964 and Wiley is the only non-original member (he replaced his teacher and mentor in the group.)
The group has just retired – finished its final concerts in late November.  (Wiley is actually replacement for the originally-scheduled and very popular Alisa Weilerstein, who is off in Venezuela with L.A. Symphony conductor Gustavo Dudamel.)

Jennifer Frautschi has performed as soloist with the Los Angeles and Chicago symphony orchestras and is winner of an Avery Fisher Career Grant.

  Hsin-Yun Huang was the youngest-ever Gold Medalist of the Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition. Both Jesse Mills and Nicholas Cords play classical, contemporary, jazz and world music. Mills has a Grammy nomination and is a member of the contemporary music group Nurse Kaya while Cords is a regular member of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble and the New York group Brooklyn Rider.

This batch of brilliant players will perform Antonin Dvorak’s “Miniatures for Two Violins and Viola,” Arnold Schoenberg's “Verklärte Nacht” for String Sextet; and Wolfgang Mozart's “Grande Sestetto Concertante.”
(from top: Wiley, Frautschi, Mills, Huang)

The concert is at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the museum. Tickets are $35 or $30 for museum members. But if you are a student you’re really in luck - $5 the day of the concert. or call 343-0482.
The same group plays the music, and I bet just as well, at 7 p.m. Friday at the Fine Arts Center in Camden. $30 in advance; $35 day of. 425-7676.


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