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ASU's Visiting Quartet Residency Program welcomes the Brentano String Quartet


Brentano-String-Quartet posing with their instruments.

The Brentano String Quartet, Visiting Quartet Resident Artists. Courtesy photo

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October 18, 2023

The Arizona State University Visiting Quartet Residency Program in the School of Music, Dance and Theatre welcomes back the world-renowned Brentano String Quartet as its 2023–24 resident artists.

“The Brentano String Quartet is a jewel in the quartet world,” said Jonathan Swartz, founder and director of the Visiting Quartet Residency Program and professor of violin. “Their performances are always of the utmost beauty and full of genuine integrity. Their residency at ASU is so impactful, as all of the musicians are thoughtful, inspiring and enthusiastic teachers.”

This year, the residency program’s season consists of a different theme for each Brentano String Quartet concert.

The season opens on Oct. 20 with “Musical Preoccupations.” The Brentano String Quartet will perform Bela Bartok’s String Quartet No. 5, Sz. 102, which includes a number of special characteristic preoccupations that give it a distinct and riveting personality. The program creates a context for several of those preoccupations through the music of Bach, Beethoven, Haydn, Purcell, Berio and Bartok himself.

The quartet’s Feb. 16 program focuses on work from British composers, including James MacMillan’s “Memento” and “For Sonny.” Other works on the program include Haydn Op. 33 No. 3 and Beethoven Op. 130.             

The April 3 program features viola quintets including a newly commissioned work by composer James MacMillan with special guest violist Hsin-Yun Huang.    

In addition to the quartet’s concerts, the residency program presents chamber music performances by ASU students who study with the Brentano String Quartet and ASU faculty during the residency.

The Visiting Quartet Residency Program (VQRP), a distinct program among music schools nationwide, integrates visiting resident artists with a comprehensive chamber music curriculum, providing the greatest educational chamber music experience possible. Each year, a different major professional string quartet is engaged to serve throughout the year as distinguished artist teachers.

The Brentano String Quartet has served as visiting resident artists in ASU’s program since the 2007–08 academic year.

Founded in 1992, the Brentano String Quartet has appeared throughout the world to critical acclaim.

Described as “passionate, uninhibited and spellbinding” by The London Independent, the quartet has performed across five continents in the world’s most prestigious venues.

The Brentano String Quartet is known for projects that reimagine the standard concert program, from Bach to Beethoven, while also maintaining a strong commitment to new music. They have expanded the quartet canon by commissioning works from some of the most important composers of our time.

The quartet is named for Antonie Brentano, whom many scholars consider to be Beethoven’s “Immortal Beloved,” the intended recipient of his famous love confession.

Visiting Quartet Residency Program 2023–24 season

Oct. 20                                         
The Brentano String Quartet
“Musical Preoccupations”          
7:30 p.m.                                      
Katzin Concert Hall                      

Nov. 6                                           
Visiting Quartet Residency Program Culmination Recital      
7:30 p.m.                                      
Recital Hall                                   

Nov. 9                                           
Visiting Quartet Residency Program Culmination Recital      
7:30 p.m.                                      
Recital Hall                                   

Feb. 16, 2024                               
The Brentano String Quartet
“The British”                                
7:30 p.m.                                      
Katzin Concert Hall                                             

April 3, 2024                                
The Brentano String Quartet
“Viola Quintets”       
7:30 p.m.  
Katzin Concert Hall                                                 

April 16, 2024                              
Visiting Quartet Residency Program Culmination Recital      
7:30 p.m.                                      
Katzin Concert Hall                      

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