·· David Harrington, Violin
·· John Sherba, Violin
·· Hank Dutt, Viola
·· Sunny Yang, Cello
Vân-Ánh Vanessa Võ, Bamboo Xylophone and Zithers
Rinde Eckert, Vocalist
GEORGE CRUMB Black Angels
ALEKSANDRA VREBALOV New Work (World Premiere, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall)
INTI FIGGIS-VIZUETA music by yourself (NY Premiere)
JONATHAN BERGER / HARRIET SCOTT CHESSMAN My Lai Suite
Event DurationThe printed program will last approximately 75 minutes with no intermission.
David Harrington, Violin | John Sherba, Violin
Hank Dutt, Viola | Sunny Yang, Cello
For more than 45 years, San Francisco’s Kronos Quartet has combined a spirit of fearless exploration with a commitment to continually reimagine the string quartet experience. In the process, Kronos has become one of the world’s most celebrated and influential ensembles, performing thousands of concerts, releasing more than 60 recordings, collaborating with many of the world’s most accomplished composers and performers, and commissioning over 1,000 works and arrangements for string quartet. Kronos has received more than 40 awards, including the prestigious Polar Music, Avery Fisher, and Edison Klassiek prizes.
Integral to Kronos’ work is a series of long-running associations with many of the world’s foremost composers and musicians, including Franghiz Ali-Zadeh, Philip Glass, Nicole Lizée, Vladimir Martynov, Steve Reich, Aleksandra Vrebalov, and Wu Man. Kronos has shared the stage with numerous artists, including David Bowie, Asha Bhosle, Rhiannon Giddens, Sam Green, Zakir Hussain, Trevor Paglen, Van Dyke Parks, Alim Qasimov, San Francisco Girls Chorus, Tanya Tagaq, Mahsa Vahdat, Tom Waits, and Howard Zinn.
Touring for five months each year, Kronos appears in the world’s most prestigious concert halls, clubs, and festivals. Kronos has a prolific and wide-ranging discography on Nonesuch Records, including three Grammy-winning albums: Terry Riley’s Sun Rings (2019), Landfall with Laurie Anderson (2018), and Berg’s Lyric Suite featuring Dawn Upshaw (2003). Among Kronos’ recent releases are Ladilikan (World Circuit Records) with Malian musicians Trio Da Kali; Michael Gordon: Clouded Yellow (Cantaloupe), Placeless (Kirkelig Kulturverksted) with Iranian vocalists Mahsa and Marjan Vahdat, and Long Time Passing: Kronos Quartet & Friends Celebrate Pete Seeger (Smithsonian Folkways).
The nonprofit Kronos Performing Arts Association manages all aspects of Kronos’ work, including the commissioning of new works, concert tours and home-season performances, education programs, and the annual Kronos Festival. In 2015, Kronos launched Fifty for the Future: The Kronos Learning Repertoire, an education and legacy project that is commissioning—and distributing online for free—50 new works for string quartet written by composers from around the world.
Rinde Eckert is an interdisciplinary artist—performer, singer, writer, composer, and director—whose music, music theater, and dance theater pieces have been performed throughout the United States and abroad. Eckert is a recipient of the Marc Blitzstein Award given by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is also a recipient of the 2009 Alpert Award in the Arts, a Guggenheim Fellowship in composition, and a Grammy Award for Lonely Motel—with Steven Mackey (for whom he wrote the libretto of Ravenshead) and eighth blackbird. His music/theater piece And God Created Great Whales won an Obie Award in 2000. His play with music Orpheus X was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2007. The following year, Eckert’s Horizon received a Lucille Lortel Award and earned a Drama Desk nomination.
In 2012, Eckert became one of 21 recipients of the first Doris Duke Performing Artist Award. In 2014, he made his debut as principal soloist with the New York Philharmonic in Steven Mackey’s oratorio Dreamhouse, with whom he co-wrote the libretto. In addition to three librettos written for composer Paul Dresher, Eckert has also written and directed two music theater pieces for instrumentalists: Sound Stage (with Zeitgeist) and Schick Machine (with Steven Schick). In 2017, Rinde was asked by Renée Fleming to do a solo concert at The Kennedy Center as part of her VOICES series. He wrote the libretto and sings the lead role in Aging Magician with music by Paola Prestini. His latest solo album, The Natural World, was released in 2019. Two years later, he co-created Migratory Passages, a dance/film duet with Margaret Jenkins. He is currently working on Global Moves with the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company, premiering in San Francisco this June.
During the height of the pandemic in 2020, Eckert began a series of short performances called Toybox Live with his wife, actress-playwright Ellen McLaughlin, broadcast from his home studio. The series will be starting up again soon.
A fearless musical explorer, Vân-Ánh Võ is an award-winning performer of the 16-string zither and an Emmy Award–winning composer who has collaborated with Kronos Quartet, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, and Yo-Yo Ma. In addition to her mastery of the zither, she also uses the monochord, bamboo xylophone, and traditional drums, and many other instruments to create music that blends the wonderfully unique sounds of Vietnamese instruments with other genres, and fuses deeply rooted Vietnamese musical traditions with fresh new structures and compositions.
Coming from a family of musicians and beginning to study the zither at the age of four, Võ graduated with distinction from the Vietnamese Academy of Music, where she later taught. In 1995, she won the championship title in the Vietnam National Đàn Tranh Competition, along with first prize for best solo performance of modern folk music. In Hanoi, she was an ensemble member of the Vietnam National Music Theatre as well as a member of the traditional music group ĐÔng NÔi Ensemble, which she founded and directed. She has since performed in more than 14 countries and recorded many broadcast programs in and outside of Vietnam.
Since settling in San Francisco’s Bay Area in 2001, Võ has collaborated with musicians across different music genres to create new works, bringing Vietnamese traditional music to a wider audience. She has presented her music at Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, NPR, Houston Grand Opera, UK WOMAD Festival, and London 2012 Festival as part of the Olympic Games. Võ has been a composer, collaborator, and guest soloist with Kronos Quartet, Yo-Yo Ma, Southwest Chamber Music, Oakland Symphony, Monterey Symphony, Golden State Symphony, Apollo Chamber Players, and Flyaway Productions (for aerial dance works), among others. Additionally, she co-composed and arranged Daughter from Danang (2002), the Oscar-nominated and Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner for Best Documentary; the Emmy-winning film and soundtrack for Bolinao 52 (2008); and A Village Called Versailles (2009), an audience favorite for Best Documentary at multiple film festivals.
After taking on an integral role in Kronos Quartet’s All Clear in 2012, Võ premiered her first multimedia production as artistic director, composer, and performer with The Odyssey: From Vietnam to America at the Kennedy Center in 2016. Her productions are unique in that they often include a community component that lead up to her performances, including community workshops that are meant to further engage participants in the topic that inspired her in the creation of these works. Under President Barack Obama’s administration, Võ was the first Vietnamese artist to perform at the White House and received the Artist Laureate Award for her community contributions through the arts.