What Makes it Great? with Rob Kapilow and the Verona Quartet

The Arc of Genius: Beethoven’s First and Last Quartets
NEC’s Jordan Hall

Beethoven’s first and last string quartets are among the most renowned landmarks in musical literature. These quartets revolutionized the genre, often confusing audiences of the time. With Rob Kapilow and the Concert Artist Guild-winning Verona Quartet as guides, audiences will gain a fresh perspective on these peaks among the musical mountains. In this special program, Rob and the award-winning Verona Quartet will take the audience on a journey, listening for the remarkable similarities as well as contrasts between Beethoven’s very first and very last string quartets.


Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet in F Major, Opus 18 no. 1
I. Allegro con brio
III. Scherzo: Allegro molto

 Quartet in F Major, Opus 135 
II. Vivace
IV. Grave - ma non troppo tratto - Allegro

“Verona: Pure Joy.”

La Presse, Montreal

“You could practically see the light bulbs going on above people’s heads ... The audience could decipher the music in a new, deeper way. It was the total opposite of passive listening.”

Philadelphia Inquirer

About the Verona Quartet:

The Verona Quartet—Jonathan Ong and Dorothy Ro (violins), Abigail Rojansky (viola) and Jonathan Dormand (cello)—rose to international prominence by sweeping top prizes at competitions across four continents, including the Wigmore Hall, Melbourne, Osaka, and M-Prize International Competitions, and performing at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and Melbourne Recital Hall.

Recent awardees of the 2020 Cleveland Quartet Award and recipients of the 2015 Concert Artists Guild Competition, the Quartet has demonstrated its commitment to interdisciplinary collaboration by partnering with Brooklyn’s Dance Heginbotham, traditional Emirati poets in the UAE, the folk supergroup, I’m With Her, and cellist Joshua Roman. The Quartet has commissioned works from composers Julia Adolphe, Sebastian Currier, Richard Danielpour, and Michael Gilbertson, whose Quartet was a finalist for the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Forthcoming album releases include Gilbertson’s Quartet, as well as the ensemble’s debut album, Diffusion on Azica Records. The Quartet currently serves as the inaugural Quartet-in-Residence with North Carolina’s Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle and as Quartet-in-Residence for the Indiana University Summer String Academy and New England Conservatory Preparatory School.

What Makes It Great? is sponsored by

NEC’s Jordan Hall

30 Gainsborough Street, Boston