There was never any question that the first movement of the F major String Quartet (Op. 59, No. 1) had to be included…The movement represents so crucial a page of Beethoven’s work for chamber ensemble, as well as one of the clearest examples of the breakthrough in his stylistic development.” – Victor Lederer, Author, Beethoven’s Chamber Music: A Listener’s Guide
A rising opening theme…a steady pulse of eighth notes…palpable excitement in the music…even ‘Icy chords in remote harmonies…” Author Victor Lederer quickly runs out of superlatives to describe the first movement of the first of the three so-called “Razumovsky” quartets by Beethoven.
We, and the rest of the world, will be celebrating #Beethoven250 for all of 2020, so we thought we’d begin a new year of Videos of the Week with this Beethovenian breakthrough. From a “Stars of Tomorrow Chamber Music” concert at the American Shakespeare Center‘s Blackfriars Playhouse, check out members of the Cumberland Quartet – #Heifetz2019 students Kenneth Naito and Sory Park, violins; Stephen Baloue, viola, and Dominic Lee, cello – play the opening Allegro from Ludwig van Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 7 in F major, Op. 59 No. 1. Enjoy – and check out our entire #Beethoven250 video playlist!
And there’s a lot more Beethoven on the way – this spring, fall, and summer! The Heifetz Institute, the American Shakespeare Center, and Mary Baldwin University’s new College of Visual and Performing Arts will present “The Beethoven Experience,” a six-concert exploration of all of Beethoven’s string quartets, taking place (as this video does) in the iconic Blackfriars Playhouse.
During #Heifetz2020, Artistic Director Nicholas Kitchen will lead a summer-long seminar coaching Heifetz students in readings of all of Beethoven’s duos for piano and string instruments. The course’s approach will be inspired by Mr. Kitchen’s Curtis Institute teacher, Szymon Goldberg, the legendary violinist and conductor. True to Mr. Goldberg’s advocacy of primary-source study, every participating Heifetz student will have the opportunity to work with the original manuscripts of Beethoven’s solo works, under the expert guidance of Mr. Kitchen. Click here for application information!