2015-16 Carl Broman Concerts Open with Lark Quartet

The Mary Baldwin University Music Department announces this season’s opening Carl Broman Concert, featuring the award-winning Lark Quartet, at 8 p.m. on September 28 in Francis Auditorium on the Mary Baldwin University campus.

The Lark Quartet is known for an engaging performance style that is truly their own. They have performed in many of the world’s great cultural centers, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, The Library of Congress, London’s Wigmore Hall, and l’Opera Bastille in Paris, and at international festivals such as the Mostly Mozart Festival, Istanbul Festival, Lockenhaus Festival, and the Beethoven Festival in Moscow. Their concerts feature a wide variety of the standard string quartet repertoire, as well as programs that begin with the Western tradition and continue into music from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. They also have a distinguished tradition of working closely with today’s most celebrated composers, commissioning works by such composers as Jennifer Higdon, William Bolcom, and Aaron Jay Kernis, whose work Music intrumentalis (written for the the Lark Quartet) won the Pulitzer Prize.

Their Staunton program includes a quartet (op. 20, no. 2) of Haydn, along with Italian Serenade, a single-movement work by Hugo Wolf. Although Wolf was primarily known as a composer of songs, this playful and virtuosic piece for string quartet has become one of his most popular and most often-performed works. “We love opening programs with this piece,” says Caroline Stinson, the cellist of the Lark Quartet. “It’s a wonderful way to put the energy in place for the whole program.”

The concert will also include the monumental late quartet, op. 132, of Ludwig van Beethoven. Considered a masterpiece among chamber works, it exhibits a wide range of emotions throughout its movements. Beethoven composed this great work while he was suffering from a serious illness, and he wrote its sublime slow movement upon his recovery. “The middle movement is extraordinarily beautiful,” explains Stinson, “and it is really a song thanks for Beethoven’s healing.”

This season’s Carl Broman Concert series continues on March 17, 2016 with the exceptional young Chinese pianist Yun-Chin Zhou, who has been hailed as a “dashing virtuoso….complete with dazzling fingerwork and shapely phrasing” by the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Mary Baldwin’s Sunday Recital Series continues with pianist Lynne Mackey at 3 p.m. on November 1.

Tickets for the Lark Quartet may be purchased at the door and are $25 for the general public, $20 for seniors, and $5 for non-Mary Baldwin students (Mary Baldwin students free). Season tickets are also available. To purchase tickets online or for more information, visit the Music at Mary Baldwin webpage or call 540-887-7294.