Takács Quartet 

NEC's Jordan Hall

Takács Quartet

Edward Dusinberre and Harumi Rhodes, violins

Richard O’Neill, viola

András Fejér, cello 

The Takács Quartet are renowned around the world for their elegant, incisive accounts of the classic quartet repertoire and for their appetite for new music. They combine a rock-solid commitment to the essentials of the classic repertoire and a zest for new music and unconventional partnerships: in recent seasons, they’ve collaborated with bandoneon standout Julien Labro, composer and The National vocalist Bryce Dessner, vocalist Clarice Assad, and actors Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep. 

The Takács Quartet’s program for this engagement offers two of the notable nineteenth-century string quartets in the repertoire – Haydn’s luminous “Sunrise” quartet and the second of Beethoven’s Razumovsky quartets, a tempestuous showpiece for the whole ensemble.  

Paired with these quartets, the ensemble performs an exciting new Celebrity Series co-commission from American violist and composer Nokuthula Ngwenyama. As a performer, Ngwenyama is an Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient and is in demand as a chamber music partner, orchestral soloist, and recitalist. Her work as a composer has been praised by Gramophone Magazine for “providing solidly shaped music of bold mesmerizing character.” In recent seasons, she has collaborated with the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson trio for Elegy, and composed the 2020 orchestral work Primal Message, premiered by the Detroit Symphony under Xian Wang. For the latter work, Ngwenyama took inspiration from the Arecibo "message in a bottle" to other worlds.

For Flow, the Harvard Divinity School graduate again returns to big ideas about the cosmos. Ngwenyama draws on the Big Bang and the subsequent cooling of the universe, her yoga practice, and the murmurations of starlings to consider the flow of our existence.

Read Nokuthula Endo Ngwenyama's artist statement about Flow, with videos illustrating the scientific concepts.

The artists talk to NPR news about Flow and its creation.

This performance also has a streaming option February 18 - February 24.

Program Details

Program notes to come.

About Flow, with videos and illustrations

From the composer:

"We, as biological creatures, flow through life. Conversely, the flow of existence is temporarily housed in all living creatures each generation. Everything in nature flows and develops through time.  Individual consciousness is a small part of all collectively lived experience.  When the Takács Quartet asked me to write them a piece about the natural world, I researched seasonal starling murmurations, black hole collisions, protein music (converting protein sequences or genes to musical notes), Sars-Covid-2 Omicron and “Kraken” variants, peat fields as nature’s gift to carbon reclamation, and Madagascar lemur song and rhythms.”

Program notes to come.

“You will not hear better string quartet playing anywhere in the world today. ”

BBC Music Magazine

NEC's Jordan Hall Venue Information

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