Death and the Maiden highlights March 24 SSQ concert

Franz Schubert’s masterwork “Death and Maiden” highlights the Spokane String Quartet’s upcoming concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 24, at the Bing Crosby Theater. The piece replaces Erich Korngold’s String Quartet No. 2 on the previously announced program.

The John Adams piece “Fellow Traveler” opens the program, which features a guest performance by former SSQ cellist John Marshall, who plays principal cello for the Spokane Symphony.

Click here to buy tickets.

Sarah Bass, viola player for the Spokane Symphony, joins the group for Mozart’s String Quintet No. 4 in G Minor, written as the composer returned from a whirlwind tour of Europe yet struggled to find steady income back home in Vienna.

All seats for the concert are general admission and are available through ticketswest.com or at the door. Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors, or free for persons under 18 and students with ID.

Composers at a crossroads in March 24 concert

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Erich Korngold, both at a crossroads in their composing career, highlight the Spokane String Quartet’s next concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 24, at the Bing Crosby Theater.

The John Adams piece “Fellow Traveler” opens the program, which features a guest performance by former SSQ cellist John Marshall.

Click here to buy tickets.

Sarah Bass, viola player for the Spokane Symphony, joins the group for Mozart’s String Quintet No. 4 in G Minor, written as the composer returned from a whirlwind tour of Europe yet struggled to find steady income back home in Vienna. After intermission, the Quartet performs Korngold’s String Quartet No. 2, written as the Jewish composer pondered his future in the changing political climate of 1930s Germany.

All seats for the concert are general admission and are available through ticketswest.com or at the door. Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors, or free for persons under 18 and students with ID.

SSQ opens 2024 on Jan. 28 with Beethoven, Price and Mendelssohn

The Spokane String Quartet returns to the Bing Crosby Theater stage at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 28, with music by Beethoven, pioneering Black woman composer Florence Price and Felix Mendelssohn. 

Joining the SSQ for the concert is guest John Michel, cello professor at Central Washington University and founding member of the Kairos, formerly known as the Kairos String Quartet, the resident ensemble at CWU.

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In the first decade after Beethoven arrived in Vienna, he assimilated and mastered the  classical string quartet form developed by Haydn and brought to heights of perfection with  Haydn and Mozart. Opus 18 contains Beethoven’s first 6 string quartets and represents the  “Classical Phase” of his quartet writing genius. Even at this early stage, Beethoven was  exploring new directions highlighted by the sharply contrasting emotional moods and  tempos in the finale of Quartet No. 6, where slow depictions of “Melancholy” alternate with  variations of a faster joyful dance. 

Florence Price (1887-1953) stated that she had two handicaps in having her music  recognized: “those of sex and race.”She overcame those obstacles, becoming the first  Black woman composer to have her work (Symphony No. 1) performed by a major  orchestra, the Chicago Symphony in 1933. Price infused the classical tradition with  elements inspired by African American spirituals and folk music, featured in the second  movement of String Quartet No. 1. 

Felix Mendelssohn’s deeply beloved sister Fanny was also a talented composer and  pianist, and trusted critic of his compositions. Felix was devastated by her unexpected  death at age 41 by stroke, and he expressed his grief musically with String Quartet No. 6, a  Requiem for Fanny. The outer movements of agitation enclose a tender core “song without  words” in the third movement. This powerful masterpiece was his last completed major  work. His death at age 38 came six months after Fanny’s, also by stroke.

All seats are general admission. Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and free for persons under 18 and students with ID. Tickets are available at the door, or click here to purchase tickets online.

Jan. 28 concert celebrates Black History Month

Black History Month gets off to an early start Sunday, Jan. 28, with the Spokane String Quartet’s concert featuring pioneering Black woman composer Florence Price.

The concert begins at 3 p.m. at The Bing Crosby Theater. Click here to purchase tickets.

Florence Price (1887-1953) was born in Arkansas and educated at the New England Conservatory of Music. She was a classical composer, pianist, organist and music teacher. She was the first African-American woman to be recognized as a symphonic composer, and the first to have a composition played by a major orchestra. She composed over 300 works: four symphonies, four concertos, and a number of choral works, art songs, chamber music and music for solo instruments.

The Jan. 28 program includes Price’s String Quartet No. 1 in G Major. Also on the program are Beethoven’s String Quartet in B-flat major, Op. 18, No. 6, and Mendelssohn’s String Quartet in F Minor, Op. 80.

Nov. 19 concert at Bing takes musical trip to France

Composers from France and the French West Indies are at the forefront at the Spokane String Quartet concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 19, at The Bing Crosby Theater.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and free for under 18 and students with ID. All seats are general admission. Click here to buy tickets.

This concert highlights the string quartets of three French composers, Joseph Bologne (Chevalier de  Saint-Georges), Gabriel Faure and Maurice Ravel.  

French-Senegalese Bologne was a larger-than-life figure who is regarded as the first composer of African  descent to receive universal critical acclaim. He was contemporary with Haydn and Mozart, and in fact  helped commission and conduct the premiere of Haydn’s “Paris” symphonies. Bologne’s life spanned  tumultuous times from the last years of the French monarchy to the French Revolution. Despite the  racism that he faced, his talents as a virtuoso violinist, conductor, dancer and master swordsman paved  the way for being welcomed in the court of Marie Antoinette, and then serving the Revolution as a  citizen soldier. 

Both Ravel and Faure only composed a single string quartet. Ravel’s “Neoclassical” quartet infuses  traditional classical form and triad-based harmony with modern explorations. Ravel composed his string  quartet at the age of 28 and dedicated it to his teacher Faure. The piece is widely considered his first  masterpiece. Gabriel Faure’s string quartet was to be his last composition, written while he was deaf  and ailing, just months before his death. The music has been described as “austere,” “distilled,” “an  intimate meditation on last things,” “aiming beyond earthly summits” and filled with “themes that seem  constantly to be drawn skywards.”

SSQ celebrates the French at Nov. 19 concert at the Bing Crosby Theater

Composers from France and the French West Indies are at the forefront at the Spokane String Quartet concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 19, at The Bing Crosby Theater.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and free for under 18 and students with ID. All seats are general admission. Click here to buy tickets.

The concert opens with String Quartet in G Minor by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges. Born on the island of Guadeloupe, he was a French-Senegalese violinist, conductor and composer, a fine dancer and regarded as one of the greatest swordsman in Europe.

Also on the program are Gabriel Faure’s String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 121, and Maurice Ravel’s String Quartet in F Major.

Pianist Evren Ozel joins String Quartet at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Fox

The Spokane String Quartet opens its 2023-24 season at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 24, at the Fox Theater with brilliant young pianist Evren Ozel and works by Brahms, Schumann and Chopin.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and free for under 18 and students with ID. Click here to buy tickets. All seats are general admission.

American pianist Evren Ozel has established himself as a musician of “refined restraint” (Third Coast Review), combining fluent virtuosity with probing, thoughtful interpretations. Having performed extensively in the United States and abroad, Evren is the recipient of a 2023 Avery Fisher Career Grant, 2022 Salon de Virtuosi Career Grant, and is currently represented by Concert Artists Guild as an Ambassador Prize Winner of their 2021 Victor Elmaleh Competition. Since his debut at age 11 with the Minnesota Orchestra, Evren has gone on to be a featured soloist with the Cleveland Orchestra, Jacksonville Symphony and the Boston Pops Orchestra. In the 2023-24 season, he will record Mozart Concertos with the Radio Symphonieorchester Wien and conductor Howard Griffiths for the Next Generation Mozart Soloists project based in Zurich, Switzerland.

Sunday’s program features:

  • Johannes Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 25
  • Robert Schumann: Piano Quintet in E-Flat Major, Op. 44
  • Frederic Chopin: Solo piano pieces

The concert features two masterpieces of chamber music – Johannes Brahms’ Piano Quartet No. 1, and Robert Schumann’s Piano Quintet. In many ways, these compositions are united by Robert’s wife Clara, a brilliant pianist of the time who performed the piano part at the public premiere for both pieces. Much has been written about the depth of the friendship and artistic inspiration between Robert, Clara and Johannes. Robert dedicated his Quintet to Clara, and Brahms claimed that he thought of Clara in every measure while composing the Piano Quartet. Sunday’s concert explores the creativity and passion of these Romantic Era composers as they emerge from the shadow cast by Beethoven.

Pianist Evren Ozel opens SSQ season Sept. 24

The Spokane String Quartet opens its 2023-24 season at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 24, with guest pianist Evren Ozel joining the ensemble for works by Brahms and Schumann.

All seats are general admission, $25 for adults, $20 for seniors, and free for persons under 18 and students with ID. Click here to buy tickets.

American pianist Evren Ozel has established himself as a musician of “refined restraint” (Third Coast Review), combining fluent virtuosity with probing, thoughtful interpretations. Having performed extensively in the United States and abroad, Evren is the recipient of a 2023 Avery Fisher Career Grant, 2022 Salon de Virtuosi Career Grant, and is currently represented by Concert Artists Guild as an Ambassador Prize Winner of their 2021 Victor Elmaleh Competition.

Since his debut at age 11 with the Minnesota Orchestra, Evren has gone on to be a featured soloist with the Cleveland Orchestra, Jacksonville Symphony and the Boston Pops Orchestra  In the 2023-24 season, he will record Mozart Concertos with the Radio Symphonieorchester Wien and conductor Howard Griffiths for the Next Generation Mozart Soloists project based in Zurich, Switzerland.

Program:

  • Johannes Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 25
  • Robert Schumann: Piano Quintet in E-Flat Major, Op. 44
  • Additional solo pieces to be announced

Season tickets on sale for 2023-24 season

Season tickets are now on sale for the Spokane String Quartet’s 2023-24 season, which opens Sept. 24 at the Fox Theater with brilliant young pianist Evren Ozel. Purchasing season tickets gives you five concerts for the price of four, which is a savings of $25 for adults and $20 for seniors.

The Quartet’s season brochure should be arriving in your mail the week of July 17 if you’re on the SSQ mailing list. Or you can use your credit card to make a secure purchase now at https://spokanestringquartet.square.site/. All seats are general admission. Season tickets are $100 for adults and $80 for seniors. Youth under 18 and students with ID are free and can pick up their comp ticket at the box office as they enter the theater.

Single-concert tickets are also on sale for $25 for adults and $20 for seniors. They may be purchased online by following the links at http://www.spokanestringquartet.org/concerts/. Service charges may apply.

In addition to the season-opening concert at the Fox, the schedule includes four concerts at the Bing Crosby Theater: Nov. 19, Jan. 28, March 24 and May 19. All concerts are at 3 p.m. Sundays. For a full season schedule visit http://www.spokanestringquartet.org/concerts/.

Here are the concert dates for the SSQ 2023-24 season

Save the dates! The Spokane String Quartet has announced its concert schedule for the 2023-24 season. Concerts will be Sept. 24 at the Fox Theater and Nov. 19, Jan. 28, March 24 and May 19 at the Bing Crosby Theater. Look for the season brochure in the mail this summer or check back here for season ticket details.