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The Aizuri Quartet Announces 2022-2023 Season Of Debuts in New York, Texas & More

The Aizuri Quartet Announces 2022-2023 Season Of Debuts in New York, Texas & More

They also make returns this season to Ravinia, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Tippet Rise Arts Center in Montana, the Women's Musical Club of Toronto, and more.

The GRAMMY-nominated Aizuri Quartet will continue its innovative approach to programming and performance in the 2022-23 season, including featured debuts at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall, Texas Performing Arts, and Krannert Center for the Performing Arts as recipients of the Cleveland Quartet Award; the Library of Congress; Boston's Celebrity Series; the season opening concert of Brevard Music Center's new Parker Concert Hall; the 2023 Big Ears Festival; Dallas Chamber Music Society; Ottawa ChamberFest; and Impromptu Classical Concerts. Aizuri continues its role as WQXR Artist Propulsion Lab Fellows, and also releases new AizuriKids videos. Watch the latest AizuriKids Episode.

They also make returns this season to Ravinia, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Tippet Rise Arts Center in Montana, the Women's Musical Club of Toronto, and New Orleans Friends of Music. With Syrian clarinetist Kinan Azmeh, the Aizuris perform their Music and Migration program at the Civic Music Association in Des Moines and Armstrong Auditorium near Oklahoma City. University engagements include performances at Penn State Performing Arts Center, Auburn University's Gogue Performing Arts Center, Amherst College, Shenandoah Conservatory, University of Nevada Reno, University of Mississippi's Ford Center, University of North Texas, and Garmany Chamber Series at The University of Hartford.

The Aizuri Quartet performs four imaginative programs this season, including Sunrise, which traces a journey from darkness to dawn, delving into the ways in which the atmosphere, psychological power, and political metaphor of the night have been an inspiration for composers from the classical era to the present-day. Opening with a Clara Schumann song arranged by quartet cellist, Karen Ouzounian, and Bartók's Fourth Quartet, Sunrise opens its second half with Tanya Tagaq's Sivunittinni, before culminating in the warmth of Haydn's "Sunrise" Quartet.

Aizuri Quartet's season opened on September 18, 2022 with the Sunrise program, marking their debut at Dallas Chamber Music Society, and on September 21, 2022 at Auburn University's Gogue Performing Arts Center and September 30 at Amherst College. They perform Sunrise this season at Penn State University's Performing Arts Center on October 6, Shenandoah Conservatory on October 11, presented by Carnegie Hall in their debut at Weill Recital Hall on October 13, at Philadelphia Chamber Music Society on February 12, 2023, and Boston's Celebrity Series on May 3, 2023.

On October 4, 2022, the quartet performs the opening night concert in Brevard Music Center's new Parker Concert Hall in Brevard, North Carolina. Their program, a revised version of Sunrise, features Ouzounian's arrangement of Clara Schumann's Ich stand in dunkeln Träumen, Robert Schumann's String Quartet No. 1 in A minor, Tanya Tagaq's Sivunittinni, and Haydn's String Quartet Op. 76, No. 4 in B flat Major.

Tagaq's Sivunittinni opens Aizuri's second program this season, Song Emerging, alongside the first string quartet of Robert Schumann, whose writing was inextricably linked to romantic lieder and vocal music. A celebration of the most direct human expression in music, the Aizuri Songbook is a soulful, personal, and surprising collection of songs, including new works as well as classical lieder and traditional songs in new arrangements commissioned by the Aizuri Quartet, in which the players sing and play simultaneously.

Song Emerging launched on September 23 at Tippet Rise Arts Center in Fishtail, Montana, and will tour to University of Nevada, Reno's Apex Chamber Music Series on November 16; The Greene Space as WQXR Artist Propulsion Lab Fellows on November 18; Evergreen Woods in North Branford, Connecticut on November 20; Ravinia Festival on December 10; and the Library of Congress in Washington D. C. on December 18, 2022.

The Aizuri's third program, The Art of Translation, creatively juxtaposes works by Franz Schubert and pieces by some of today's most compelling new voices (Lembit Beecher, Hannah Kendall, Paul Wiancko, and Nina Shekhar) to explore the highly personal and expressive ways in which composers transform visual art and poetry into music and consider the dynamic nature of art.

The program will appear on February 19, 2023 at the Krannert Center for Performing Arts at the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana; March 4 at Texas Performing Arts in Austin, TX; March 7 at the University of Mississippi's Ford Center; March 27 at the New Orleans Friends of Music; and March 30 at the University of Hartford's Garmany Chamber Series.

On February 23, 2023, the Women's Musical Club of Toronto presents a concert celebrating Icelandic-Canadian composer Fjóla Evans, featuring the Aizuri Quartet alongside pianist Talisa Blackman and vocalist Krista Kais-Prial in a world premiere by Evans commissioned by the club.

The Aizuris perform a modified version of The Art of Translation, closing with Haydn's String Quartet Op. 76 No. 4 in B-flat Major "Sunrise," on February 24, 2023 at Canada's Ottawa ChamberFest and February 26 at Impromptu Classical Concerts in Key West, Florida.

Music and Migration is a collaborative touring program offered with Syrian-American clarinetist and composer Kinan Azmeh. Each of the Aizuri members and Azmeh have different personal relationships to and experiences of migration, as do their families, and the music of this concert approaches the theme of migration in the broadest possible terms, both as a physical journey and state of mind, something that occurs both between and within countries. Stemming from a deep friendship between the Aizuri Quartet and Azmeh, and built around a new commission by composer Layale Chaker, as well as additional works for string quartet and clarinet by Azmeh, Michi Wiancko and Wang Lu, among others.

Music and Migration tours this season to Armstrong Auditorium in Edmond, Oklahoma on March 16, 2023 and to the Civic Music Association in Des Moines, Iowa on March 20, 2023.

On April 1, 2023, the Big Ears Festival in Knoxville, Tennessee presents Aizuri alongside guitarist Kyle Sanna in harpist and composer Maeve Gilchrist's Harpweaver, from the 2020 album of the same name. Watch the Harpweaver music video.

Aizuri Quartet 2022-2023 Calendar

September 18, 2022


Dallas Chamber Music Society Presents Sunrise
Caruth Auditorium | Dallas, TX
Link: https://dallaschambermusic.org/aizuri-quartet/

September 21, 2022


Auburn University Presents Sunrise
Gogue Performing Arts Center | Auburn, AL
Link: https://calendar.auburn.edu/event/aizuri_quartet

September 23, 2022


Tippet Rise Arts Center Presents Song Emerging
Tiara Acoustic Shell | Tippet Rise, MT
Link: https://tippetrise.org/events/37801

September 30, 2022


Music @ Amherst Presents Sunrise
Buckley Recital Hall | Amherst, MA
Link: www.amherst.edu/academiclife/departments/music/events/node/842583

October 4, 2022


Brevard Music Center Presents Opening Night with the Aizuri Quartet
Parker Concert Hall, Brevard Music Center | Brevard, NC
Link: https://bit.ly/3Ly76rY

October 6, 2022


Penn State University Presents Sunrise
Center for Performing Arts at Penn State | Philadelphia, PA
Link: https://cpa.psu.edu/events/aizuri-quartet

October 11, 2022


Shenandoah Conservatory Performs Presents Sunrise
Goodson Chapel Recital Hall at Shenandoah Conservatory | Winchester, VA
Link: www.su.edu/performs/event/22-10-aizuri-quartet/

October 13, 2022


Carnegie Hall Presents Sunrise
Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall | New York, NY
Link: www.carnegiehall.org/calendar/2022/10/13/aizuri-quartet-0730pm

November 16, 2022


APEX Concerts at University of Nevada, Reno Presents Song Emerging
Hall Recital Hall | Reno, NV
Link: https://events.unr.edu/event/apex_concerts_song_emerging_with_aizuri_quartet

December 10, 2022


Ravinia Festival Presents Song Emerging
Bennett Gordon Hall | Highland Park, IL
Link: www.ravinia.org/ShowDetails/2078/aizuri-quartet

December 16, 2022


Library of Congress Presents Stradivari Anniversary: Aizuri Quartet (Song Emerging)
Coolidge Auditorium, Library of Congress | Washington, DC
Link: www.loc.gov/concerts/aizuri-quartet-dec17.html

February 12, 2023


Philadelphia Chamber Music Society Presents Sunrise
Perelman Theater, Kimmel Center | Philadelphia, PA
Link: www.pcmsconcerts.org/concerts/aizuri-quartet/

February 19, 2023


Krannert Center for the Performing Arts Presents The Art of Translation
Krannert Center, University of Illinois | Urbana, IL
Link: https://krannertcenter.com/events/aizuri-quartet-art-translation#yourvisit

February 23, 2023


Women's Musical Club of Toronto Presents Aizuri x Fjóla Evans
Walter Hall, University of Toronto | Toronto, ON, Canada
Link: www.wmct.on.ca/concerts/

February 24, 2023


Ottawa Chamberfest Presents Aizuri Quartet
Carleton Dominion-Chalmers Centre | Ottawa, ON, Canada
Link: www.chamberfest.com/event/2022/introducing-aizuri-quartet/

February 26, 2023


Key West Impromptu Classical Concerts Presents Aizuri Quartet
St. Paul Episcopal Church | Key West, FL
Link: www.keywestimpromptu.org/concerts/season/all/

March 4, 2023


Texas Performing Arts Presents The Art of Translation
McCullough Theater | Austin, TX
Link: https://texasperformingarts.org/season/aizuri-quartet-2023-mccullough-theatre-austin-texas

March 7, 2023


Ford Center for the Performing Arts Presents The Art of Translation
Ford Center | Oxford, MS
Link: https://fordcenter.org/event/aizuri-string-quartet/

March 16, 2023


Armstrong Auditorium Presents Music and Migration with clarinetist Kinan Azmeh
Armstrong Auditorium | Edmund, OK
Link: www.armstrongauditorium.org/performance/kinan-azmeh-aizuri-string-quartet

March 19, 2023


Civic Music Association Presents Music and Migration with clarinetist Kinan Azmeh
Sheslow Auditorium | Des Moines, IA
Link: https://civicmusic.org/aizuri-quartet/

March 27, 2023


New Orleans Friends of Music Presents The Art of Translation
Dixon Hall, Tulane University | New Orleans, LA
Link: www.friendsofmusic.org

March 30, 2023


Garmany Chamber Music Series Presents The Art of Translation
Millard Auditorium, University of Hartford | Hartford, CT
Link: www.hartford.edu/academics/schools-colleges/hartt/performances/garmany-chamber-music-series.aspx

April 1, 2023


Big Ears Festival Presents Harpweaver with Maeve Gilchrist and Kyle Sanna
Knoxville, TN
Link: www.bigearsfestival.org/event/maeve-gilchrist/

May 3, 2023


Celebrity Series Presents Sunrise
Longy University's Pickman Hall | Boston, MA
Link: www.celebrityseries.org/productions/aizuri-quartet/

About Aizuri Quartet


The Aizuri Quartet has established a unique position within today's musical landscape, infusing all of its music-making with infectious energy, joy, and warmth, cultivating curiosity in listeners, and inviting audiences into the concert experience through its innovative programming, and the depth and fire of its performances.

The Aizuri Quartet was named the recipient of the 2022 Cleveland Quartet Award by Chamber Music America, and was awarded the Grand Prize at the 2018 M-Prize Chamber Arts Competition along with top prizes at the 2017 Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in Japan and the 2015 Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition in London. The Quartet's debut album, Blueprinting, featuring new works written for the Aizuri Quartet by five American composers, was released by New Amsterdam Records to critical acclaim ("In a word, stunning" - I Care If You Listen), nominated for a 2019 GRAMMY Award, and named one of NPR Music's Best Classical Albums of 2018. The Aizuri Quartet's follow-up to Blueprinting will be released on Azica Records in 2023.

In early 2022 the Aizuri Quartet was named fellows to the Artist Propulsion Lab, a project of WQXR, New York City's Classical radio station. The Quartet's fellowship includes live-broadcast performances, radio content, and the release of a new AizuriKids video, featuring music by Elizabeth Cotten, stop-motion animation by Lembit Beecher, and an interview with Rhiannon Giddens.

The 2021/22 season saw notable performances, including concerts with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra conducted by Ken David Masur, in which Aizuri Quartet performed John Adams's Absolute Jest. With legendary indie rock band Wilco, Aizuri Quartet opened five concerts at the United Palace in Harlem and appeared with Wilco on The Tonight Show with Stephen Colbert. Also in 21/22, the quartet premiered David Ludwig's Organistrum with Anthony McGill and Demarre McGill at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and unveiled new works by Paul Wiancko and Lembit Beecher at the Phillips Collection in Washington D.C.

The Aizuris view the string quartet as a living art and springboard for community, collaboration, curiosity and experimentation. At the core of its music-making is a virtuosic ability to illuminate a vast range of musical styles through the Aizuri's eclectic, engaging and thought-provoking programs. The Quartet has drawn praise both for bringing "a technical bravado and emotional power" to bold new commissions, and for its "flawless" (San Diego Union-Tribune) performances of the great works of the past. Exemplifying this intrepid spirit, the Aizuri Quartet curated and performed five adventurous programs as the 2017-2018 MetLiveArts String Quartet-in-Residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, leading The New York Times to applaud Aizuri Quartet as "genuinely exciting," "imaginative," and "a quartet of expert collaborators." For this series, the quartet collaborated with spoken word artist Denice Frohman and shakuhachi player Kojiro Umezaki, commissioned new works by Kinan Azmeh, Michi Wiancko and Wang Lu, as well as commissioned new arrangements of vocal music by Hildegard von Bingen and Carlo Gesualdo, which was paired with the music of Conlon Nancarrow, Haydn and Beethoven in a program focused on music created in periods of isolation.

The Aizuris believe in an integrative approach to music-making, in which teaching, performing, writing, arranging, curation, and the quartet's role in the community are all connected. In 2020, the quartet launched AizuriKids, a free, online series of educational videos for children that uses the string quartet as a catalyst for creative learning and features themes such as astronomy, American history, and cooking. These vibrant, whimsical, and interactive videos are lovingly produced by the Aizuris and are paired with activity sheets to inspire further exploration.

The Aizuri Quartet is passionate about nurturing the next generation of artists, and is deeply grateful to have held several residencies that were instrumental in its development: from 2014-2016, the String Quartet in Residence at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, the 2015-2016 Ernst Stiefel String Quartet in Residence at the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts, and the resident ensemble of the 2014 Ravinia Festival's Steans Music Institute.

Formed in 2012 and combining four distinctive musical personalities into a powerful collective, the Aizuri Quartet draws its name from "aizuri-e," a style of predominantly blue Japanese woodblock printing that is noted for its vibrancy and incredible detail.

Photo Credit: Shervin Lainez



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