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  • Carnegie Hall Presents
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Borromeo String Quartet

Friday, October 20, 2017 7:30 PM Weill Recital Hall
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Borromeo String Quartet by Richard Bowditch
Due to an injury, violist Mai Motobuchi must regretfully withdraw from this performance. Dov Scheindlin will perform in her place.

The Borromeo String Quartet “performed at a high standard that brought you so deeply into the music’s inner workings that you wondered if your brain could take it all in” (The Philadelphia Inquirer). The foursome returns to Carnegie Hall for a program of impassioned quartets from the Romantic period by Mendelssohn and Schumann; the New York premiere of arranged selections from Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I; and a new work by Sebastian Currier co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall.


Borromeo String Quartet
·· Nicholas Kitchen, Violin
·· Kristopher Tong, Violin
·· Mai Motobuchi, Viola
·· Yeesun Kim, Cello
Dov Scheindlin, Viola


BACH Selections from The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I (NY Premiere, arr. Nicholas Kitchen)
MENDELSSOHN String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 13
SEBASTIAN CURRIER Etude 6, "Velocities" from Etudes and Lullabies (World Premiere, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall)
SEBASTIAN CURRIER Lullaby 2, "Dreaming" from Etudes and Lullabies (World Premiere, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall)
SCHUMANN String Quartet in A Major, Op. 41, No. 3

Event Duration

The printed program will last approximately two hours, including one 20-minute intermission.

Lead support for the 125 Commissions Project is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Additional funding is provided by members of Carnegie Hall's Composer Club.

At a Glance

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH  Selections from The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I (arr. Nicholas Kitchen)

The number of great composers who have felt the influence of The Well-Tempered Clavier only begins to reflect the impact it has had on composition in every generation since Bach. Nicholas Kitchen’s arrangement for string quartet belongs to a tradition of composers drawing from these indispensable works and discovering new ways to bring Bach’s counterpoint to life.

FELIX MENDELSSOHN  String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 13

Written when he was 18, Mendelssohn’s A-Minor Quartet bears the hallmarks of his precocious genius in its technical assurance and confident handling of large-scale forms, reflecting his close study of Beethoven’s quartets. So characteristically “Beethovenian” are the A-Minor Quartet’s quasi-cyclical structure and generally high level of dissonance that it was once mistaken for one of Beethoven’s late quartets, much to Mendelssohn’s chagrin.

SEBASTIAN CURRIER  Etude 6, "Velocities," and Lullaby 2, "Dreaming," from Etudes and Lullabies

Etudes and Lullabies, by American composer Sebastian Currier, comprises a dozen short pieces for string quartet that can be played either singly or in any combination the performers choose. The pairing of etude and lullaby, two genres with long histories and rich associations, offers ample scope for contrast—in this case, between the blistering energy of “Velocities” and the hallucinatory reverie of “Dreaming.”

ROBERT SCHUMANN  String Quartet in A Major, Op. 41, No. 3

Schumann’s three Op. 41 quartets of 1842 marked his return to chamber-music composition after a hiatus of several years. Like its two companions, the A-Major Quartet reflects the composer’s deep immersion in the chamber music of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven, as well as a departure from the literary models that had inspired much of his earlier work.


Borromeo String Quartet

With each visionary performance, the award-winning Borromeo String Quartet strengthens its reputation as one of the most important ensembles of our time. It recently celebrated 25 years of inventive music making.

Known for its innovative performances, the quartet strives to redefine the classical music landscape through a pioneering use of technology. It was the first string quartet to utilize laptop computers in concert, a tool that allows the artists to perform from four-part scores and manuscripts, better revealing the composer’s creative process. It was also the first classical ensemble to make and distribute its own live concert recordings and videos through the Living Archive, a music education web portal with a revised version soon to be released.

The Borromeo’s recent and upcoming seasons include the premiere of a new work by Aaron Jay Kernis; a multimedia collaboration with visual artist, puppeteer, and director Doug Fitch in celebration of the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth; concerts in Switzerland, Japan, Korea, and China; performances of the Bartók cycle of string quartets in Boston and San Francisco; and appearances at Baltimore’s Shriver Hall, Minneapolis’s Schubert Club, and the Hong Kong International Chamber Music Festival.

The quartet has presented more than 10 string quartet cycles by beloved masters and enjoyed collaborations with major composers of the last two centuries. It has served as ensemble-in-residence at the New England Conservatory, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and Taos School of Music for 25 years, and worked extensively with the Library of Congress and Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

The Borromeo String Quartet has received numerous awards, including Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Career Grant and Martin E. Segal Award, and Chamber Music America’s Cleveland Quartet Award. It was a recipient of top prizes at the Young Concert Artists International Auditions and International String Quartet Competition in Evian, France.

Dov Scheindlin, Viola
Dov Scheindlin is a member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and associate member of The MET Orchestra. He has performed as violist of the Arditti, Penderecki, and Chester string quartets, and appeared as a soloist with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, and Munich Philharmonic. He is also a regular guest at the Salzburg, Lucerne, and Tanglewood festivals.

Winner of the 1999 Ernst von Siemens Music Prize, Mr. Scheindlin is an avid chamber musician, and has appeared in 28 countries around the globe. As a member of the Arditti Quartet, he gave nearly 100 world premieres, among them new works by Benjamin Britten, Elliott Carter, György Kurtág, Thomas Adès, and Wolfgang Rihm. He has performed with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and The MET Chamber Ensemble. His chamber-music partners include members of the Juilliard, Alban Berg, Tokyo, and Borodin string quartets, as well as concertmasters with major symphony orchestras.

Mr. Scheindlin has recorded extensively for the EMI, Teldec, Auvidis, Col Legno, and Mode labels. In 2002, he received the Gramophone Award for the Arditti Quartet’s recording of Sir Harrison Birtwistle’s Pulse Shadows. His playing has been broadcast on NPR, CBC / Radio-Canada, the BBC, and numerous European national radio networks.

Raised in New York City, Mr. Scheindlin studied with Samuel Rhodes and William Lincer at The Juilliard School, and has taught at Harvard, Princeton, Wilfrid Laurier, and New York universities. He plays a viola made by Francesco Bissolotti in 1975.

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