The Parker Quartet to Perform Three-Concert Residency at Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival

Grammy Award-winning ensemble serves as Harvard University’s Quartet-in-Residence

Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival (CCCMF), Cape Cod’s premiere presenter of summer chamber music, presents Harvard University’s quartet-in-residence, The Parker Quartet, in three concerts, on Tuesday, August 21, 7:30 pm, Cotuit Center for the Arts, 4404 Falmouth Road, Cotuit; Wednesday, August 22, 7:30 pm, Dennis Union Church, 713 Rte. 6A, Dennis; and Friday, August 24, 7:30 pm, First Congregational Church, 200 Main Street, Wellfleet.

Described by The New York Times as “something extraordinary” the revered Parker Quartet makes a long-awaited return to the Festival following several seasons of international touring. Exceptional recordings and performances have earned the ensemble the highest accolades, including a Grammy® Award for their recording of Gyӧrgy Ligeti’s complete works for string quartet.

During its residency, The Parker Quartet offers Cape classical fans three phenomenal concerts. The first performance, The Parker Quartet, consists entirely of string quartets penned by Mozart, Janáček, and Beethoven. Mozart’s “String Quartet in E-flat Major” originates from a set of six quartets written for Franz Joseph Haydn, with whom he shared a mutual friendship. Mozart incorporates dynamic dissonance, especially in the second movement, resulting in a darker, richer tone than in prior similar works. In the Menuetto he incorporates the Haydn’s style, evoking a simpler, more playful feel.

Inspired by Tolstoy’s novella, “The Kreutzer Sonata”, Janáček’s String Quartet No. 1, nicknamed “Kreutzer Sonata” is turbulent like Tolstoy’s story. Unlike Tolstoy’s version, Janáček focuses on the heroine in the story, murdered by her husband. The dialogue between the cello and first violin rise in intensity through to an arduous climax.

Beethoven’s “Opus 59” string quartets were dedicated to Count Razumovsky, a Russian ambassador to Vienna. Written at the height of Beethoven’s “heroic” works, he weaves traditional Russian melodies throughout, resulting in a spectacular evening of music making.

In the second concert, Artistic Director Jon Nakamatsu makes his Dennis “debut” as a piano graces the stage there for the first time in A Piano in Dennis, performing Bach’s “Sonata in G Minor for Viola da Gamba and Keyboard. Later in the program. Artistic Director Jon Manasse and The Parker Quartet captivate the audience with the sublime “Quintet in A Major for Clarinet and Strings”. Written as a showpiece for Mozart’s friend and clarinetist Anton Stadler, the composition brought the clarinet to the public’s eye, showcasing the clarinet’s instrumental virtuosity. Mozart was simultaneously composing his opera “Così fan tutte”, and this quintet has a similar golden, warm tone.

The Festival’s season culminates in a breathtaking Fireworks Finale with music guaranteed to captivate, inspire and thrill. Khachaturian’s “Trio for Clarinet, Violin, and Piano” opens the concert, showcasing complex and intertwining melodies, folk tunes, rhythms and unique timbre, a fascinating listen. Dedicated to his teacher Gabriel Fauré, Ravel’s “Quartet in F Major” was rejected by conservatories in Rome and in Paris as it broke standard rules of harmony and form. Now, it is considered beautiful with its magical and dreamlike atmosphere. Dohnányi’s Quintet No. 1 in C Minor for Piano and Strings closes both the concert and the season. A romantic work, it is emotional, passionate, and strongly influenced by Brahms. Even Brahms himself was impressed by Dohnányi’s work. With an exhilarating building of intensity, Dohnányi rewards the listener with a resounding conclusion to a dynamic work of art, bringing the 39th CCCMF season to a sparkling close.

Programs: The Parker Residency

Tuesday, August 21: The Parker Quartet

The Parker Quartet: Daniel Chong, violin; Ying Xue, violin; Jessica Bodner, viola; Kee-Hyun Kim, cello

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756 – 1791)

String Quartet in E-flat Major, K. 428 (K. 421b)
Allegro non troppo
Andante con moto
Menuetto: Allegretto; Trio
Allegro vivace

LEOŠ JANÁČEK (1854 – 1928)

String Quartet No. 1, JW 7/8 (“Kreutzer Sonata”)
Adagio
Con moto. Vivace
Con moto. Vivace. Andante. Tempo I
Con moto. Adagio

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770 – 1827)

String Quartet in E Minor, Opus 59 No. 2
Allegro
Molto adagio
Allegretto; Maggiore
Finale: Presto

Wednesday, August 22: A Piano in Dennis

The Parker Quartet: Daniel Chong, violin; Ying Xue, violin; Jessica Bodner, viola; Kee-Hyun Kim, cello
Jon Manasse, clarinet; Jon Nakamatsu, piano

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH (1685 – 1750)

Sonata in G Minor for Viola da Gamba (Cello) and Keyboard, BWV 1029
Vivace
Adagio
Allegro

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756 – 1791)

Quintet in A Major for Clarinet and Strings, K. 581
Allegro
Larghetto
Menuetto
Allegretto con variazioni

GABRIEL FAURÉ (1845 – 1924)

Quartet No. 1 in C Minor for Piano and Strings, Opus 15
Allegro molto moderato
Scherzo: Allegro vivo
Adagio
Allegro molto

Friday, August 24: Finale Fireworks

The Parker Quartet: Daniel Chong, violin; Ying Xue, violin; Jessica Bodner, viola; Kee-Hyun Kim, cello
Jon Manasse, clarinet; Jon Nakamatsu, piano

ARAM KHACHATURIAN (1903 – 1978)

Trio for Clarinet, Violin and Piano (1932)
Andante con dolore, molt’espressione
Allegro
Moderato

MAURICE RAVEL (1875 – 1937)

Quartet in F Major (1903)
Allegro moderato; Très doux
Assez vif; Très rythmé
Très lent­­
Vif et agité

ERNŐ DOHNÁNYI (1877 – 1960)

Quintet No. 1 in C Minor for Piano and Strings, Opus 1
Allegro
Scherzo: Allegro vivace; Trio
Adagio, quasi andante
Finale: Allegro animato

Ticket orders received on or after July 8: $38 general admission; $15 for college students (with ID); FREE for attendees 18 and under. General admission to three or more concerts: $36 per ticket. Emerson String Quartet concert: $55.

Festival seating is limited to venue capacity, advance purchase is recommended. Tickets purchased online can be printed at home or picked up at will call at the performances. Tickets may also be purchased by calling or visiting the box office at 508-247-9400 or at 3 Main Street, Unit 6, North Eastham. Box office hours are 10 am to 3 pm, Monday through Friday. Phone orders are available until 12 noon on the day of each concert.

For more information about Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival’s 2018 season, performers, mission and venues, visit capecodchambermusic.org, or follow Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival

Hailed by The New York Times as “A Triumph of Quality,” the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival (CCCMF) has been a year-round presenter of chamber music and a major contributor to the cultural life of Cape Cod since its inception in 1979. Founded as the Cape & Islands Chamber Music Festival by the late collaborative pianist Samuel Sanders, the Festival continues his legacy. Now entering its 38th season, CCCMF presents four weeks of intensive chamber music programming in a variety of Cape locations in July and August. Throughout the rest of the year, CCCMF presents autumn and spring concerts, a community outreach program, and benefit concerts in New York and on Cape Cod. Hoping to ignite the interest of a younger audience, CCCMF welcomes all youth up to age 18 to attend any regular concert free of charge. The Festival is also host to a Composer-in-Residence program, and features composers with Cape Cod connections. CCCMF is a private, non-profit organization supported by a volunteer Board of Directors with financial support from individuals, corporations, and foundations both local and nationwide. For more information about CCCMF’s programs, schedule or tickets, visit capecodchambermusic.org, call 508-247-9400 or follow Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo: The Festival features a 3-performance residency by The Parker Quartet, image by Luke Ratray