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Danish String Quartet

Coming to San Antonio on October 23, 2016

“Here’s a simpler story of the quartet:
 We are three Danes and one Norwegian cellist, making this a truly Scandinavian endeavor. We are often joking about ourselves being modern Vikings – perhaps a touch more harmless than our ancestors – we are not pillaging cities or razing the English coastline!

The three of us met very early in our lives in the Danish countryside at a summer camp for enthusiastic amateur musicians. Not yet teenagers, we were the youngest players, so we hung out all the time playing football and chamber music together. During the regular school year we would get together often to play music and just have fun. We became best friends. In 2001, professor Tim Frederiksen of The Royal Academy of Music in Copenhagen got in touch with us and started coaching us on a regular basis. All of the sudden, at the ages of 15 and 16, we were a serious string quartet. It all happened so fast that none of us seemed to notice the transition.

“Among all the dauntingly good young string quartets currently doing the rounds, the Danish String Quartet stands out: not because they’re shinier or plusher or pushier than the rest, but because of their nimble charisma, stylish repertoire and the way their light and grainy shading can turn on a dime.” Kate Molleson

The Guardian

Time passed and we grew up. We were enrolled at The Royal Academy of Music and our life as music students had begun. None of us have any memory of our lives without the string quartet. In 2008 Norwegian cellist Fredrik joined in. We found him hidden away in a castle outside Stockholm. During his free time, Fredrik can be found fixing or sailing his sailboat somewhere in Scandinavia.
The rest of us spend time with different hobbies – old cars, cooking, gaming, reading, playing, talking, and drinking. Yes, playing string quartets is our job, and yes it is hard work, but we mostly do it for pleasure, like we always did.
There is so much amazing music to delve into, and our hope is to continue our travels through life and music together as a quartet. And if all goes well, around 2060 we will beat the world record for longest running string quartet. On that day we will host a giant feast – you shall all be invited!”

Rune, Asbjørn, Fredrik and Frederik


Asbjørn Nørgaard (viola)
Rune Tonsgaard Sørensen (violin)
Fredrik Schøyen Sjölin  (cello)
Frederik Øland (violin)


Swans Kissing

Quartet No.15


Folk music from the Nordic countries


Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

Dover String Quartet

Coming to San Antonio on April 3, 2016

Considered one of the most remarkably talented string quartets ever to emerge at such a young age, the Dover Quartet catapulted to international stardom following a stunning sweep of the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, becoming one of the most in-demand ensembles in the world.

In 2013-14, the Quartet became the first ever Quartet-in-Residence for the venerated Curtis Institute of Music. In the Fall of 2013, the Dover Quartet won not only the Grand Prize but all three Special Prizes at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition.  The Quartet also won top prizes at the Fischoff Competition and the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition, and has taken part in festivals such as Chamber Music Northwest, Artosphere, La Jolla SummerFest, Bravo! Vail, and the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival.  They are the most recent recipients of the Cleveland Quartet Award and the Hunt Family Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award.

During the 2013-14 season, the Quartet acted as the Ernst Stiefel String Quartet-in-Residence at the Caramoor Festival. Additionally, members of the Quartet have appeared as soloists with some of the world’s finest orchestras, including the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Tokyo Philharmonic.

The Dover Quartet draws from the musical lineage of the Cleveland, Vermeer, and Guarneri Quartets, having studied at the Curtis Institute and Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where they were in residence from 2011-2013.  The Quartet has been mentored extensively by Shmuel Ashkenasi, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, Kenneth Goldsmith, Joseph Silverstein, Arnold Steinhardt, Michael Tree, and Peter Wiley, and is dedicated to sharing their music with underserved communities and is an active member of Music for Food, an initiative to help musicians fight hunger in their home communities.

“The Dover Quartet players have it in them to become the next Guarneri String Quartet — they’re that good. Expert musicianship, razor-sharp ensemble, deep musical feeling and a palpable commitment to communication made their performances satisfying on many levels.”

Chicago Tribune

“These young musicians play with remarkable attentiveness and an astonishingly even tone, as if they were four limbs of one instrument.”

Montreal Gazette


Joel Link (violin)
Bryan Lee (violin)
Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt (viola)
Camden Shaw (cello)


DVORAK Quartet in F Major, Op.96 “American”

BERG String Quartet Op.3




Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

Congratulations to the Dover Quartet – the most recent recipient of the Cleveland Quartet Award and the Hunt Family Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award!

The Shanghai Quartet with Wu Man (Pipa)

Coming to San Antonio on February 28, 2016

Renowned for its passionate musicality, impressive technique and multicultural innovations, the Shanghai Quartet has become one of the world’s foremost chamber ensembles.  Its elegant style melds the delicacy of Eastern music with the emotional breadth of Western repertoire, allowing it to traverse musical genres including traditional Chinese folk music, masterpieces of Western music and cutting-edge contemporary works.

Formed at the Shanghai Conservatory in 1983, the Quartet has worked with the world’s most distinguished artists and regularly tours the major music centers of Europe, North America and Asia. Among innumerable collaborations with noted artists, they have performed with pipa virtuoso Wu Man.

Recognized as the world’s premier pipa virtuoso and leading ambassador of Chinese music, Grammy Award-nominated musician Wu Man has carved out a career as a soloist, educator and composer giving her lute-like instrument—which has a history of over 2,000 years in China—a new role in both traditional and contemporary music. Most recently, she has been featured on the soundtrack of the blockbuster “Kung Fu Panda 3”.

Having been brought up in the Pudong School of pipa playing, one of the most prestigious classical styles of Imperial China, Wu Man is now recognized as an outstanding exponent of the traditional repertoire as well as a leading interpreter of contemporary pipa music by today’s most prominent composers.

During the 2015-16 season, Wu Man embarks on an extensive North American tour with longtime colleagues, the Shanghai Quartet.

“Brilliantly original and inarguably gorgeous.” The Washington Post

“Wu Man is one of the rare musicians who has changed the history of the instrument she plays.” Boston Globe

“A wonderfully ferocious and illuminating performance.” The Washington Post


Weigang Li (violin)
Yi-Wen Jiang (violin)
Honggang Li (viola)
Nicholas Tzavaras (cello)
Wu Man (pipa)


“Music from Ancient and New China”

“China Song”

“Song of the Ch’in”
String Quartet

“Red Lantern”, Quintet
for Pipa & String Quartet


Quartet in f minor, Op.95

“Ghost Opera”
Pipa & String Quartet


Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

Gryphon Trio

Coming to San Antonio on January 24, 2016

Recently celebrating its 20th anniversary, the Gryphon Trio has impressed international audiences and the press with its highly refined, dynamic performances and has firmly established itself as one of the world’s preeminent piano trios. With a repertoire that ranges from the traditional to the contemporary and from European classicism to modern-day multimedia, the Gryphons are committed to redefining chamber music for the 21st century.

The Trio tours regularly throughout North America and Europe and their 17 recordings are an encyclopedia of works for the genre. They have commissioned over 75 new works, and regularly collaborate on projects that push the boundaries of chamber music. Honours include two Juno Awards for Classical Album of the Year, and the prestigious 2013 Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts from the Canada Council.

Deeply committed to the education of the next generation of audiences and performers alike, the Gryphons frequently conduct masterclasses and workshops at universities and conservatories, and are Artists-in-Residence at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music and Trinity College.

Gryphon cellist Roman Borys is Artistic Director of Ottawa’s Chamberfest. Annalee Patipatanakoon and Jamie Parker serve as the festival’s Artistic Advisors in addition to their responsibilities at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music, where Mr. Parker is the Rupert E. Edwards Chair in Piano Performance and Ms. Patipatanakoon is Associate Professor of Violin.

This concert is part of the LAS AMÉRICAS FESTIVAL

“This is a piano trio that plays with strength and unanimity… big, bold, almost orchestral performances.”

Los Angeles Times

“From the first measures you could hear the mastery the Gryphons bring to their core repertoire. The coloration was ravishing, especially in places like the last few minutes of the first movement where the violinist and cellist play in unison (or fifteenths more exactly) against dark sounds from the piano. The counterpoint in the slow movement was also striking”

Ottawa Citizen


Annalee Patipatanakoon (violin)
Roman Borys (cello)
James Parker (piano)


DEBUSSY Trio in G Major

WIJERATNE Love Triangle


RAVEL Trio in a minor


Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

Zemlinsky String Quartet

Coming to San Antonio on November 8, 2015

Founded in 1994 as the Penguin Quartet, the Zemlinsky String Quartet has become a much lauded example of the Czech string quartet tradition. The members of the ensemble grew up together and have a distinctive style that sets them apart from other string quartets.

The Zemlinsky Quartet performs regularly in the Czech Republic and abroad. Recent major appearances of the Zemlinsky Quartet include Wigmore Hall (London, 2012, 2014), Cité de la Musique (Paris, 2010, 2012), Library of Congress (2009), Place des Arts (Montreal, 2009, 2012), Prague Spring Festival (2005, 2009, 2011), and their New York debut on Schneider/New School Concerts (2009).

The repertoire of the ensemble is far ranging containing more than 200 works by many leading composers, including contemporary music. The group has made many recordings for Czech Radio. Most recently, the quartet has won the 1st Grand Prize in the Bordeaux International String Quartet Competition (2010). The members of the ensemble also perform as soloists and are prizeholders of several individual competitions.

They were named after the Austrian composer, conductor and teacher Alexander Zemlinsky (1871-1942), whose enormous contribution to Czech, German and Jewish culture during his 16-year stay in Prague was underestimated for decades. Since 2005, the quartet has maintained a special relationship with the Alexander Zemlinsky Foundation in Vienna.

“The enjoyment of music-making is evident in everything these musicians play, and each is an exemplary performer”

Peter Johnson

Malvern Concert Club Review

“…immaculate intonation, amazing tonal variety, perfectly clear articulation and an exceptional sense of architecture…”

Harry Halbreich

Bohuslav Martinů Newsletter


František SOUČEK (1st violin)
Petr STŘÍŽEK  (2nd violin)
Petr HOLMAN  (viola)
Vladimír FORTIN (violoncello)


MENDELSSOHN String Quartet in E-Flat Major, Op.12

KRENEK String Quartet No.7, Op.96


JANACEK String Quartet No.2 “Intimate Letters”


Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

The Academy of St Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble

Coming to San Antonio on October 11, 2015

The Academy of St Martin in the Fields is one of the world’s premier chamber orchestras, renowned for its fresh, brilliant interpretations of the world’s most-loved classical music. Their Chamber Ensemble will be opening our 73rd Season with an amazing program at Temple Beth-El on Sunday, October 11.

Formed by Sir Neville Marriner in 1958 from a group of leading London musicians, the Academy gave its first performance in its namesake church in November 1959. Their first three recordings led to a succession of long-term contracts and the Academy quickly took their place among the most recorded ensembles in history.

The Academy of St Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble was created in 1967 to perform the larger chamber works – from quintets to octets – with players who customarily work together, instead of the usual string quartet with additional guests. Drawn from the principal players of the orchestra, the Chamber Ensemble tours as a string octet, string sextet, and in other configurations including winds. Its touring commitments are extensive and have included visits to France, Germany, Spain and Australia, as well as North and South America. Recording contracts with Philips Classics, Hyperion, and Chandos have led to the release of over thirty CDs by the Chamber Ensemble.


“What an awesome octet is the Academy Chamber Ensemble. Packing the punch of two quartets, their sound is vivid: bright and highly saturated”

Opus One, Nov 2013

“Their sound is sweet and pure, their ensemble work airtight, and the playing purred along effortlessly”

The Washington Post, Oct 2012


Tomo Keller (violin, leader)
Harvey de Souza (violin)
Robert Smissen (viola)
Stephen Orton (cello)
Lawrence O’Donnell (bassoon)
Lynda Houghton (double bass)
Stephen Stirling (horn)
Timothy Orpen (clarinet)


ROSSINI String Sonata in G Major

MOZART Quintet in E-Flat Major for Horn & Strings, K.407


SCHUBERT Octet in F Major for Winds & Strings, D.803


Temple Beth-El
Address: 211 Belknap Place
Time: 3:15 PM

*This concert will open with a musical tribute to Ruth Jean Gurwitz performed by YOSA

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