Their passion for contemporary music makes the Arditti Quartet one of the leading ensembles for new music. When they perform in the Chamber Music Hall they will present a Hungarian-British program: besides string quartets by György Kurtág and György Ligeti that can almost be called classical, the concert includes a new opus by Julian Anderson and works by Jonathan Harvey and James Clarke.
String Quartet No. 1
String Quartet No. 2
String Quartet No. 2 German Première commissioned by the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation and the Wigmore Hall with the generous support of André Hoffmann, President of the Fondation Hoffmann
String Quartet No. 2
The Arditti Quartet focuses on contemporary music with great success. Forty years ago, the first violinist Irvine Arditti launched the ensemble driven by passion for the musical avantgarde. Since then, they have not only interpreted new music in perfect form, but have also premiered several hundred string quartets. “The adventure of presenting a piece to the audience for the very first time – there’s no substitute for that. At least not for me,” raves Irvine Arditti. For this concert, too, the four string players will arrive with a completely new work: they will give the German premiere of the Second String Quartet by British composer Julian Anderson, commissioned by the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Stiftung Berliner Philharmoniker and Wigmore Hall.
The other two works on the first half of the concert are also by composers from Great Britain. James Clarke’s First String Quartet features an obsessive, forward-pressing voice. A press review wrote that the work is rock music using other means. Jonathan Harvey’s Second String Quartet seems more fragile, more transcendent, more mystical but no less expressive. Both two works were written especially for the Arditti Quartet, and they fuel their preference for rhythmic precision, articulation as keen as a razor, and clarity of form. On the second half, the Ardittis will play two “classics” of contemporary string quartet literature: György Kurtág’s early Opus 1 from 1959 and fellow Hungarian György Ligeti’s Second String Quartet, composed about a decade later.