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Pavel Haas Quartet; 04/13/2012

Friday, April 13, 2012
8:00 PM
Mahaney Center for the Arts, Concert Hall

The Times of London exclaimed: “The world’s most exciting string quartet? . . . Well, they suit the tagline better than most . . . Their tone is large, quasi-orchestral. They take risks; often they play fast. Above all, they play with passion.” The Pavel Haas return to Middlebury with a program that includes Tchiakovsky’s String Quartet no. 1 in D Major, op. 11; the Shostakovich String Quartet no. 7 in F-sharp Minor, op. 108; and Schubert’s Death and the Maiden.

This free Performing Arts Series concert is made possible with generous support from the Institute for Clinical Science and Art, in memory of F. William Sunderman Jr. and Carolyn Reynolds Sunderman. Free; no tickets required.


Watch the Pavel Haas Quartet playing Smetana in rehearsal, filmed as they prepared for a concert in December 2009.


TCHAIKOVSKY  Quartet No. 1 in D Major, Op. 11

Moderato e semplice
Andante cantabile
Scherzo: Allegro non tanto
Finale: Allegro giusto

SHOSTAKOVICH Quartet No. 7, Op. 108



SCHUBERT  Quartet in D minor, Op. post., D. 810 “Death and the Maiden”

Andante con moto
Scherzo: Allegro molto


Ensemble Biography

P A V E L    H A A S    Q U A R T E T

Veronika Jaruskova, violin
Eva Karova, violin
Pavel Nikl, viola
Peter Jarusek, cello

Since winning the Paolo Borciani competition in Italy in Spring 2005, the Pavel Haas Quartet has performed at the world’s most prestigious concert halls and recorded four award-winning CDs, receiving great acclaim from audiences and critics alike.

In 2011/12 the Quartet performs concerts at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Theatre des Champs-Elysees Paris, Zurich Tonalle, Vienna Konzerthaus, Munich Herkulessaal and Wigmore Hall in London, as well as major venues in Brussels, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Madrid. The Quartet tours Hong Kong and Japan, appearing in Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and Yokohama, and visits the United States for a national tour culminating in a performance at Carnegie Hall.  In October 2011 the Quartet was awarded the prestigious Record of the Year at the Gramophone Awards for its recent recording of Dvořák’s String Quartets No.12 in F major 'American' and No.13 in G major on Supraphon.

Other recent highlights for the Quartet include performances at the Rheingau Festival, the Schubertiade, San Francisco Performances, and a return to the Auditorio Nacional in Madrid.  In 2007, the Cologne Philharmonic nominated the Quartet as ECHO Rising Stars, resulting in a tour to major concert halls worldwide. The Quartet took part in the BBC New Generation Artists scheme from 2007–2009, and in 2010 was awarded the 2010 Special Ensemble Scholarship of the Borletti-Buitoni Trust. The 2010/11 season saw the Quartet begin a three-year residency as Artists in Residence of Glasgow Royal Concert Halls.

The Pavel Haas Quartet has released four discs on the Supraphon label. Their most recent recording, the aforementioned disc of Dvořák’s String Quartets, was released in autumn 2010 and won widespread critical acclaim: The Sunday Times awarded the recording five stars, commenting: “Their account of the American Quartet belongs alongside the greatest performances on disc. In this repertoire, they are simply matchless today.”  They won the Diapason d’Or de l’Année for their disc featuring Prokofiev’s String Quartets Nos.1 & 2 and Sonata for Two Violins, with Diapason commenting “This is now the definitive recording of the Prokofiev quartets... to be discovered without hesitation.” Their first two recordings were equally well received. Their first recording of Janáček Quartet No.2 ‘Intimate Letters’ and Haas Quartet No.2 ‘From the Monkey Mountains’ was voted one of the CDs of 2006 by The Daily Telegraph and received a 2007 Gramophone Award . The Quartet’s second disc saw them complete their recordings of the string quartet works by Haas and Janáček . Gramophone commented “To describe a CD as musically important is to court a certain level of controversy but I’ll stick my neck out and claim extreme importance for this particular release.”

Based in Prague, the Quartet studied with Milan Skampa, the legendary violist of the Smetana Quartet, and continues to enjoy a close relationship with him. The Quartet also has worked with several other masters of the quartet world, including members of Quartetto Italiano, Quatuor Mosaiques, Borodin Quartet and Amadeus Quartet, as well as with Walter Levin in Basel.

The Quartet takes its name from the Czech composer Pavel Haas (1899-1944) who was imprisoned at Theresienstadt in 1941 and tragically died at Auschwitz three years later. His legacy includes three wonderful string quartets.

Artist website:

Press Quotes

“The world’s most exciting string quartet? Well, they suit the tagline better than most. Their tone is large, quasi-orchestral. They take risks. Above all, they play with passion.”--The Times, January 2010

“The Pavel Haas Quartet’s interpretation is phenomenal... Without doubt, here is quartet playing of the highest order.”--The Irish Independent, June 2011

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