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Cancelled: Pacifica Quartet

Friday, March 27, 2020 7:30 PM Weill Recital Hall
Pacifica Quartet by Lisa-Marie Mazzucco
The Pacifica Quartet can “produce a sound that can sing exquisitely or throttle you with its grittiness and energy” (The New York Times)—qualities perfectly suited to this program. Shostakovich found inspiration in Jewish themes, notably klezmer and cantorials, in his strikingly dramatic quartet. Like Shostakovich, Ligeti gravitated towards folk themes, but his are Hungarian—one of many unique elements in his early quartet. Mendelssohn’s quartet was one of his favorites; its quicksilver opening, graceful Menuetto, wistful slow movement, and energized finale have made it an audience favorite, too.


Pacifica Quartet
·· Simin Ganatra, Violin
·· Austin Hartman, Violin
·· Mark Holloway, Viola
·· Brandon Vamos, Cello


LIGETI String Quartet No. 1, "Métamorphoses nocturnes"

MENDELSSOHN String Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1

SHOSTAKOVICH String Quartet No. 2 in A Major

Event Duration

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

Salon Encores

Get together with people who love music after this Weill Recital Hall concert for a free drink and discussion with the evening's musicians.
Learn More

In honor of the centenary of his birth, Carnegie Hall’s 2019–2020 season is dedicated to the memory of Isaac Stern in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to Carnegie Hall, arts advocacy, and the field of music.

At a Glance

LIGETI  String Quartet No. 1, “Métamorphoses nocturnes”

Insatiably curious and constitutionally incapable of falling into a rut, 20th-century Hungarian composer György Ligeti continually reinvented his musical language over the course of his long life. He once said that “all cultures, indeed the whole wide world is the material of art!” Early in his career, Ligeti concentrated on distilling his musical language to its essence, as illustrated by his first quartet, which unfolds organically from a basic four-note motif.


MENDELSSOHN  String Quartet No. 3 in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1

Felix Mendelssohn wrote the first of his six numbered quartets in 1827, at age 18, and the last more than 20 years later. The D-Major Quartet falls squarely in the middle and shows Mendelssohn’s preternatural ability to blend classical poise with romantic passion and freedom. By turns brilliant and introspective, the score contains hints—especially in the writing for the first violin—of Mendelssohn’s great E-Minor Violin Concerto, composed some six years later.


SHOSTAKOVICH  String Quartet No. 2 in A Major, Op. 68

The second of Shostakovich’s 15 string quartets followed hard on the heels of his grim, death-haunted Second Piano Trio. Yet the resolutely determined and fundamentally life-affirming character of the A-Major Quartet has more in common with the Russian composer’s “Leningrad” Symphony, the work that had catapulted him to international fame three years earlier.

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