April 24-26: Mendelssohn Festival
April 19, 2017
Calidore String Quartet headlines festival of Mendelssohn’s string quartet repertoire
On April 24-26, the award-winning Calidore String Quartet will headline the University of Delaware’s Mendelssohn Festival, performing the entirety of Felix Mendelssohn’s string quartet repertoire, along with the composer’s Octet for Strings with the University’s own Serafin Quartet.
The Calidore String Quartet, called “already world class” by the Washington Post, is serving as 2017 visiting guest artists for the University.
Concerts are scheduled at 5:30 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, April 24-25, in the Gore Recital Hall in the Roselle Center for the Arts, and at 8 p.m., Wednesday, April26, in Mitchell Hall.
Special festival pricing for the full three-concert series is $36 adults; $21 for UD faculty/staff/alumni and seniors; and $12 for students. Single tickets are $15 for adults; $10 for UD faculty/staff/alumni and seniors; and $5 for students. Advanced series and single tickets are available through the REP box office, 302-831-2204. At-the-door tickets are cash or check only. More information is available online.
The Calidore Quartet – violinists Jeffrey Myers and Ryan Meehan, violist Jeremy Berry and cellist Estelle Choi – has been described by Strings as " four highly intelligent, deeply sensitive virtuosos," and praised by the Los Angeles Times for its balance of “intellect and expression.” In the past year, the quartet’s honors have included the 2017 Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award and the 2016 and inaugural Grand Prize of the M-Prize International Chamber Music Competition, hosted by the University of Michigan, the largest prize for chamber music in the world.
‘A breathtaking emotional voyage’
“Mendelssohn’s music has been with the Calidore String Quartet since our first moments playing together,” says violinist Ryan Meehan. “His works are featured on two of our recordings and in countless important debuts across the world including Wigmore Hall, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. It has been our dream to perform his entire body of string quartets in a cycle over several concerts. Unlike Beethoven’s 16 quartets, Mendelssohn’s six quartets are rarely brought together in the format of a cycle. The life journey represented between the first, op.13, and the last, op. 80, quartets is a breathtaking emotional voyage. Through the experience of the cycle the audience and performers come to understand the early optimism, the middle age triumph and the end-of-life devastation that Mendelssohn experienced and incorporated into his string quartets."
The Calidore String Quartet first realized this “dream of bringing this narrative to life” last summer at the East Neuk Festival in Scotland. The performance at UD will mark the North American debut of their complete Mendelssohn cycle.
For the Calidore String Quartet, teaching as well as performing is at the core of its activities as an ensemble, so the post as the University’s Visiting Guest Artists is a perfect fit. “We have been afforded the opportunity to study with some of the greatest and most generous musical minds in the world,” Meehan says, “and we feel it is our duty to pass this information on to the next generation of musicians.”
“The collaboration with the Calidore String Quartet has enhanced the chamber music experience for our string students in the Department of Music, giving them new and varied insights into chamber music practice and performance,” says faculty member and Serafin cellist Lawrence Stomberg.
“This is a very exciting time for music at the University of Delaware,” said Russell Murray, who chairs the Department of Music. “With such well-considered support and high caliber visiting artists, we can continue and accelerate the growth of our outstanding music program.”
The programs for the concerts are
April 24: String Quartet Op. 13, Four Pieces for String Quartet Op. 81 and String Quartet Op. 44 no. 2
April 25: String Quartet Op. 44 no. 3, Four Pieces for String Quartet Op. 81 and String Quartet Op. 80
April 26: String Quartet op. 12, String Quartet Op. 44 no. 1 and Octet for Strings, with Serafin Quartet
About the Department of Music
For more than 60 years the University of Delaware Department of Music has been dedicated to the musical growth of its students and the cultural enrichment of the community, offering a range of music majors and minors and presenting a wide variety of public performances. For nonmajors, the department offers minors in applied music, musical studies, jazz studies and music management and offers classes and activities for the general student population as well. Approximately 1,000 students enroll each year in music appreciation courses, and more than 500 students earn academic credit by participating in the department's music ensembles and performance programs.
About the Calidore Quartet
The Calidore String Quartet regularly performs throughout North America, Europe and Asia and has debuted in such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Lincoln Center, Seoul’s Kumho Arts Hall, Schneider Concerts and at many significant festivals. As a passionate supporter of music education, the Calidore String Quartet is deeply committed to mentoring and educating young musicians, students and audiences. In 2016 the quartet was named Visiting Guest Artists at the University of Delaware and will serve as Visiting Artists-in-Residence at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theater and Dance. From 2014-16 the Calidore served as Artists-in-Residence at Stony Brook University.