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Heath Quartet - Beethoven Cycle 2019–2020

Heath Quartet

7:30 pm, Mahaney Arts Center, Robison Hall

Known for “passionate performances that combine technical accomplishment with interpretative flair” (Strad), the Gramophone award-winning Heath Quartet—the series’ first-ever quartet in residence—returns to help us celebrate Beethoven’s 250th birth year. They present Beethoven’s entire string quartet cycle over six concerts (two each term), bookending weeklong residencies with our campus and community. Nelson Fund events. All concerts at 7:30 PM at the Mahaney Arts Center, Robison Hall.

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Concert Dates, Programs, and Ticket Info*
MAY 2  MAY 8

Media  • Biography • Press Release

Saturday, October 5

Quartet no. 1 in F Major, op. 18, no. 1

Quartet no. 11 in F Minor, op. 95 (Serioso)

Quartet no. 13 in B-flat Major, op. 130.

Reserved seating. Tickets: $22 General public/$16 Midd ID holders/$10 Youth (18 and under)/$6 Midd students

Pre-concert lecture by Professor of Music Larry Hamberlin at 6:15 pm in MAC 221 

Tuesday, October 8, 12:00 PM

NEW! 100th Anniversary Matinee Concert! Heath Quartet

Mahaney Arts Center, Robison Hall

On this day in 1919, lutenist and balladeer Thomas Wilfred presented a dramatic recital of ancient songs as the series’ first-ever performance.  The Heath Quartet helps us celebrate this anniversary with a bonus lunchtime recital, featuring a sneak preview of selections the quartet will perform in its debut at the Elbphilharmonie, in Hamburg, Germany the following week. This is a great chance to hear the quartet reach beyond Beethoven into contemporary music. Free, no tickets required

Photo Aaron Kimball

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Friday, October 11

Quartet no. 2 in G Major, op. 18, no. 2

Quartet no. 8 in E Minor, op. 59 no. 2 (Razumovsky no. 2)

Quartet No. 15 in A Minor, op. 132.

Reserved seating.Reserved seating. Tickets: $22 General public/$16 Midd ID holders/$10 Youth (18 and under)/$6 Midd students

Cash bar and light refreshments available at intermission and after the concert 

Saturday, January 11

Quartet no. 3 in D Major, op. 18, no. 3

Quartet no. 16 in F Major, op. 135

Quartet no. 7 in F Major, op. 59 no. 1 (Razumovsky no. 1).

No tickets are required for this free concert, thanks to the Sunderman Family Concert Endowment Fund, in memory of Dr. F. William Sunderman Jr. and Dr. Carolyn Reynolds Sunderman.

Pre-concert lecture by Professor of Music Larry Hamberlin at 6:30 pm in MAC 221


Friday, January 17

Quartet no. 4 in C Minor, op. 18, no. 4

Quartet no. 12 in E-flat Major, op. 127

Quartet no. 9 in C Major, op. 59 no. 3 (Razumovsky no. 3)

Reserved seating. Tickets: $22 General public/$16 Midd ID holders/$10 Youth (18 and under)/$6 Midd students

Cash bar and light refreshments available before the concert and at intermission.


Saturday, May 2

Quartet no. 5 in A Major, op. 18, no. 5

Quartet no. 10 in E-flat Major, op. 74 (Harp)

Quartet no. 14 in C-sharp Minor, op. 131.

Reserved seating. Tickets: $22 General public/$16 Midd ID holders/$10 Youth (18 and under)/$6 Midd students


Friday, May 8

Quartet no. 6 in B-flat Major, op. 18, no. 6

Quartet no. 13 in B-flat Major, op. 130

Große Fuge, op. 133

Reserved seating. Tickets: $22 General public/$16 Midd ID holders/$10 Youth (18 and under)/$6 Midd students

Join us for a free, season-finale reception.

Photos 1, 2, and 4 by Kaupo Kikkas, photo 3 by Simon Way, and photo 5 taken on the Trail Around Middlebury (TAM) in October 2017 by PAS photographer Aaron Kimball.


The Heath Quartet perform Mendelssohn's Quartet No. 6 in F minor, Op. 80, mvt. 1: Allegro vivace assai live from the JdP Music Building, St Hilda's College, University of Oxford


Heath Quartet

Oliver Heath, Violin
Sara Wolstenholme, Violin
Gary Pomeroy, Viola
Christopher Murray, cello

The Telegraph calls the “delicate perfection” of their sound “a marvel,” with “an exquisite tenderness,” and The Washington Post praises their “winsome blend of impetuosity and discipline.

The charismatic and sought-after Heath Quartet won the 2016 Gramophone Chamber Award for their recording of the complete string quartets of Sir Michael Tippett, and in May 2013 became the first ensemble in fifteen years to win the prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society's Young Artists Award. Formed in 2002 at the Royal Northern College of Music they were selected for representation by YCAT, awarded a Borletti-Buitoni Special Ensemble Scholarship and in 2012 won the Ensemble Prize at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern where they are now regular visitors.

Following their award-winning debut recording of Tippett on the Wigmore LIVE label, the quartet recorded two discs for the Harmonia Mundi/PIAS label featuring Tchaikovsky's first and third quartets (November 2016) and the complete Bartók quartets (June 2017), the latter being shortlisted for the 2018 Gramophone Chamber Award and the winner of the 2017 Limelight Chamber Recording of the Year award.

During the 2019–2020 season, the quartet will perform a complete Beethoven quartet cycle over the course of three return visits to Middlebury College in Vermont as part of an ongoing residency. Beethoven also features in their debut at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, returns to Wigmore Hall and Handelsbeurs Ghent, as well as in various appearances throughout the UK. The music of the Second Viennese School is also high on their agenda this season, with works by Berg, Webern, and Schoenberg appearing on their forthcoming recording program. Longtime artistic collaborator Carolyn Sampson (soprano) joins them on the recording, as well as in recital for their debut at Palau de la Musica Catalana in Barcelona.

Last season included the quartet's Saffron Hall and Cheltenham Festival debuts as well as returns to Boulez Saal Berlin, Wigmore Hall, and Aldeburgh Festival. They also made appearances at several European Festivals including Mecklenberg Vorpommern in Germany, Westport in Ireland, and Norfolk & Norwich in the UK, among others.

Notable performances of previous seasons have included the world premiere of a John Tavener piece at the BBC Proms, concerts at the Beethovenfest Bonn, their debuts at the Musée d'Orsay and Louvre Auditorium in Paris, and the World Premiere of Dobrinka Tabakova's Highland Pastorale performed at their Cheltenham Festival debut. In 2018, they made their debut tour of New Zealand. In the UK, they have also performed at the Barbican, Bridgewater Hall, Sage Gateshead, Perth Concert Hall, and Queen's Hall Edinburgh. And in Europe they have appeared at the Kissingen Winterzauber and Schwetzinger Festivals as well as Concertgebouw Amsterdam, deSingel Arts Centre in Antwerp, Vara Konserthus in Sweden, Esterházy Palace, and the Musikverein and the Konzerthaus in Berlin and Vienna.

Strong exponents of contemporary music, the quartet have also worked with several leading composers including Hans Abrahamsen, Helen Grimes, Louis Andriessen, Brett Dean, Anthony Gilbert, Sofia Gubaidulina, Steven Mackey, and John Musto. They took part in the European première of Steve Mackey's Gaggle and Flock for string octet, the world première of John Musto's Another Place with Carolyn Sampson at the Wigmore Hall as well as receiving unanimous critical acclaim for their performance of Ligeti's Quartet No.2, and Thomas Ades' Arcadiana for The Park Lane Group at the Purcell Room. In 2018, they embarked on a special project with Spanish director Calixto Bieto, in a co-production between the Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Holland Festival with performances throughout Europe. A revival of the project will be taken to Festival l'Automne Paris in October 2019.

The Heath Quartet regularly enjoy working with a host of talented collaborators who also include Anna Caterina Antonacci, James Baillieu, Ian Bostridge, Adrian Brendel, Michael Collins, Colin Currie, Stephen Hough, Sunwook Kim, Richard Lester, Joanna MacGregor, Aleksandar Madzar, Anthony Marwood, Mark Padmore, Lawrence Power, Jamie Walton, and the Tokyo Quartet, and have even ventured into the world of jazz in a 'Wigmore Late' concert together with saxophonist Trish Clowes and pianist Gwilym Simcock.

Artist website:

Mahaney Arts Center
Middlebury College
South Main St./Route 30 South
72 Porter Field Rd.
Middlebury, VT 05753
(802) 443-3168 phone
(802) 443-2834 fax