FOR THE COLLEGIAN
The Beethoven cycle of the Center for the Performing Arts returns when the Brentano String Quartet comes to perform at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Schwab Auditorium as part of its three-day residency.
The quartet, which is currently in-residence at Princeton University, will be performing three of Beethoven’s string quartets as a part of a three-year project with the St. Lawrence String Quartet, during which all of Beethoven’s string quartets will be preformed.
George Trudeau, director of CPA, said he is excited about the quartet’s upcoming performance.
“They are considered one of the great American String Quartets,” he said.
Marica Tacconi, faculty leader for curricular and educational programs at the CPA, also agreed on the quartet’s special quality.
“They not only have the passion of music performance, but also the talent to engage with people which is what we look for when selecting musical acts to bring to Penn State,” she said.
The Quartet was started over 20 years ago at The Juilliard School where all of the members studied as graduate students.
Since then, the group has performed in prestigious venues such as Carnegie Halland most recently provided music for the film “A Late Quartet” — in which cellist Nina Lee was featured in a cameo.
For Serena Canin, one of the violinists in the quartet, Beethoven is considered to be a genius whose music everyone should witness at least once.
“He encapsulates the human experience,” she said. “He’s a fighter, a thinker and a philosopher.”
Tacconi also hopes everyone who attends gets something out of Beethoven’s music.
“Beethoven communicates with people on a deep level,” she said.
The music performed at the concert will be presented in a very unique format with each piece representing a certain era of Beethoven’s life, Canin said.
“Op. 18 No. 2” was written in Beethoven’s early career and Canin described it as “fun and light.” Op. 74, one of his middle shows, shows more of a human side, and Op. 135 was composed toward the end of his career, Canin said.
For her, Op. 135 is a stand out.
“It’s just quirky, intimate and beautiful,” she said.
Tickets for the concert are $42 for adults, $15 for students and $32 for attendees 18 and under.
“I hope it will be an escape for attendees and that they will have a greater appreciation for Beethoven,” Trudeau said.
In addition to the performance, the quartet will be holding a master class for the Penn State School of Music students today in Music Building in Esber Recital Hall.
The quartet also held a salon evening Monday at 7 p.m. in the Nittany Lion Inn Boardroom. This provided an informal, but in-depth look into one of the pieces that will be performed Wednesday, Op. 74 “Harp,” Tacconi said.
“I want people to feel the music, and be in touch with one of the greatest composers ever,” Tacconi added.