Music Network presents award-winning French string quartet Quatuor Voce on tour 16 – 26 November 201

11 October 2017

“Quatuor Voce has every quality that goes to make a good quartet: refinement, beautiful tone, excellent ensemble, precise chording, fine rhythm and loads of character” The Strad

“Energising and stylish” The Guardian

Catch award-winning French string quartet Quatuor Voce on tour from 16 – 26 November as they bring their effortlessly sophisticated artistry to bear on a programme featuring music by Bartók, Schubert, Beethoven and a new work by Irish composer, Rhona Clarke. Champions of the great repertoire for string quartet, and widely celebrated for their performances of contemporary music, Quatuor Voce have been acknowledged as being “… amongst the best ensembles in the world” [Süddeutsche Zeitung]. Tour details at musicnetwork.ie. Music Network tours are funded by the Arts Council and are presented in association with RTÉ lyric fm.

Formed in 2004, the quartet quickly established itself as an ensemble of note, winning international competitions in Geneva, Vienna, Bordeaux, Graz, and London and performing in such prestigious venues as the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, the Konzerthaus, Vienna and the Barbican, London as part of a ‘Rising Stars’ tour in 2013.

Beyond the lyricism, the technical brilliance, and the obvious joy in playing together, what strikes audiences most about Quatuor Voce is their spirit of adventure. Open to diverse art forms, and in particular contemporary music, Quatuor Voce regularly work closely on new commissions from living composers, including Bruno Mantovani, Gianvincenzo Cresta and Graciane Finzi. Here is an ensemble that knows the music from the inside, knows where it can be allowed to breathe a bit more and has the finesse and elegance to carry it off. No wonder then that the ensemble has shared a stage with such diverse personalities as choreographer Thomas Lebrun, the musicologist Bernard Fournier and Canadian neo-folk singer Kyrie Kristmanson, as well as regularly performing live music for silent movies from F. W. Murnau to Buster Keaton.

Their recordings of Schubert and Beethoven string quartets and the complete Mozart’s Flute Quartets (with French flautist Juliette Hurel) were met with high critical acclaim by the international press (The Strad, Télérama, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Diapason, Strings and Bow and Klassieke Zaken). In 2015, they released Brahms and Mozart’s string quintets with violist Lise Berthaud, continuing their collaboration with Alpha Classics.

Rhona Clarke’s Edge, String Quartet No. 3, commissioned by Music Network especially for this tour, will receive its premiere at the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny on Friday 17th November. Commenting on the upcoming tour Clarke says,

“I was delighted to get the commission from Music Network and with the opportunity to write for this vibrant and superb group. So far I have only heard the Quatuor Voce through recordings and I am very much looking forward to hearing them live and especially performing the new piece. It is a pretty tense work called 'Edge' - something which will contrast very much with the Schubert and Beethoven”.

This is the second of two new works commissioned by Music Network for the Autumn 2017 season – a work by Deirdre Gribbin, ‘Through every wind that blows’, was premiered by Tine Thing Helseth and Gunnar Flagstad in October – continuing Music Network’s work of actively commissioning and touring new works by Irish composers, as well as programming existing contemporary Irish music within relevant concert programmes.

Rhona Clarke will give a Composer’s Voice talk during the concert at Siamsa Tíre, Tralee on Friday 24th November. Composer’s Voice is an audience development initiative of the Contemporary Music Centre and is made possible through the continued funding of the Contemporary Music Centre by the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon. www.cmc.ie

As part of Music Network’s Learning and Participation programme, Quatuor Voce will facilitate string ensemble workshops and instrumental masterclasses with musicians around the country, connecting Music Network tours to music education programmes and giving musicians rich, holistic musical experiences. For more details contact Sarah Cunningham, Programmes Administrator on programmesdmin@musicnetwork.ie.

Music Network tours are funded by the Arts Council and are presented in association with RTÉ lyric fm. Tickets for all regional concerts are available from individual promoters around the country. Single tickets for Dublin concerts range from €10 - €20, and can be purchased by calling Music Network on (01) 4750224 or booking online at musicnetwork.ie. Online booking fees apply.

FOR LISTINGS EDITORS

Sarah Dayan, violin
Cécile Roubin, violin
Guillaume Becker, viola
Lydia Shelley, cello

Programme:

Béla Bartók String Quartet No. 1 in A minor, Sz. 40
Franz Schubert String Quartet No. 12 in C minor “Quartettsatz”, D. 703
Rhona Clarke Edge, String Quartet No. 3 (New commission by Music Network)
Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet No. 9 in C major, Op. 59, No. 3

Note: “Edge, String Quartet No. 3” will be replaced by the world premiere performance of ‘Suite Capoeira’ (i. Nanà, ii Baden, iii Candomblé, iv Cuiqueros) by Gabriel Sivak in Warrenpoint Town Hall on Thursday 16th November.

Full tour details here.