Britain's world-renowned Fitzwilliam String Quartet will honor their close
association with Russian composter Dmitri Shostakovich with a free concert
Tuesday, Feb. 12, at 7:30 p.m. in the Rooke Recital Hall of the Weis Music
Bucknell at Bucknell University.
"The Feb. 12 concert celebrates the 40th anniversary of Shostakovich's visit
to the University of York with a performance of the exact program that was
played for Shostakovich," said Barry Hannigan, a professor of music at
Only a year into their residency at York, the Fitzwilliam premiered
Shostakovich's "13th Quartet" to the composer's delight. In fact, the composer
called the ensemble his "preferred performers of my quartets." The Fitzwilliam
continued to introduce Shostakovich's quartets to the West, becoming the first
group ever to record and perform all 15.
The Fitzwilliam is one of the very few string quartets in Britain that
performs on both historical and modern instruments. Members of the string
quartet are Alan George, viola, an original member of the quartet; Lucy Russell,
violin; Marcus Barcham-Stevens, violin; and Heather Tuach, violoncello.
"Quartet-in-residence at the Universities of York and Warwick, they also
were affiliate artists at Bucknell from 1978 to 1986, returning to campus on a
regular basis beginning in 1998 and, most recently, last year," said Hannigan.
"Those lucky enough to have heard the quartet over the years can attest to the
high quality of their performances. We sincerely thank the generosity of the
Kushell family, which has endowed a series of residencies for the Bucknell Music
The performance is part of the Fitzwilliam's residency at Bucknell this
month, which includes three other concerts and several workshops as well as
class visits. All concerts, which are free and open to the public, will begin at
7:30 p.m. in the Rooke Recital Hall of the Weis Music Building.
The concert program schedule includes:
Thursday, Feb. 7: with Barry Hannigan, piano; Mary Hannigan, flute; and Sezi
Seskir, piano. They join the Fitzwilliam in a program including Britten's "Cello
Sonata," Martinu's "Madrigal for violin and viola, Beethoven's "Flute Serenade"
and Schumann's "Piano Quartet."
Thursday, Feb. 14: with Cathal Breslin, piano; Christopher Para, violin and
viola; Andrew Rammon, cello; and Sezi Seskir, piano, in a program including
Haydn's "Quartet in D major, Op. 71/2," Alan Ridout's "Ferdinand and the Bull,"
Mozart's "Sonata in E minor, K.304" and Tchaikovsky's "Souvenir de Florence." A
highlight of the Valentine's Day program is the composition "calling westward"
by Bucknell composer Paul Botelho.
Sunday, Feb. 17: with Barry Hannigan, piano; Bill Kenny, horn; and Kent
Larmee, horn, in a program including Beethoven's 'Horn Sextet," Britten's
"Quartet No. 3" and Brahms' "Piano Quintet."
In addition to the concert schedule, the Fitzwilliam String Quartet will
perform Sunday, Feb. 10, at the 11 a.m. Worship Service in Rooke Chapel. The
music includes Introit, Anthem and Offertory by Ola Gjello, with the Rooke
Chapel Choir and David Cover, piano.
The residency is supported by the Kushell Music Endowment of Bucknell University. For more information concerning the concerts or class visits, call 570-577-1239.
(Info from Bucknell University: Kathryn Kopchik)