March 3, 1997

The Emerson String Quartet Returns to the Center for the Arts

The Emerson String Quartet returned to the Middlebury College stage in the CFA Concert Hall this February to play a sumptuous program of Brahm's Opus 67, Bartok's Quartet No. 3, and Schubert's Death of the Maiden.

Acclaimed for its artistry and dynamic performance style, the Emerson String Quartet has amassed an impressive list of achievements: an exclusive Deutsche Gramophone recording contract, three Grammy awards, regular appearances with virtually every important series and festival worldwide, and an international reputation as a quartet that approaches both the classics and contemporary music with equal mastery and enthusiasm.

1996 found the quartet giving the world premiere of Ned Rorem's String Quartet #4 in Alice Tully Hall, a premiere of a quartet written for them by Curt Cacioppo for Philharmonic Chamber Music Society, and concerts in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Cleveland, Toronto, Miami, Houston, and Seattle. They toured Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy and France, traveled to Torino for a marathon of all six Bartok quartets, and returned to London's South Bank for a six-concert cycle. In the coming summer, they will make their first appearance in Israel under the auspices of the Jerusalem Festival.

The Emerson String Quartet took its name from the great American poet and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson. Violinists Eugene Drucker and Philip Setzer alternate in the first chair position and are joined by violinist Lawrence Dutton and Cellist David Finckel. All four have performed many benefit concerts for causes ranging from nuclear disarmament to the first against AIDS, world hunger, and children's diseases. In 1995 they received an honorary degree from Middlebury College.