Signum Quartett

The Signum Quartett is actively working on the future of string quartet, discovering new paths along the way. They have launched the very succesful #QuarTweet project, calling on all composers to send in a 140 note composition through twitter.

The Anatomy of String Quartet

  • 11:30
  • 29.01.2020
  • Atriumzaal
  • € 15

Signum Quartett
Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Almost every morning during the String Quartet Biennale, various events will shed light on diverse aspects of the quartet. The Coffee Talk, which focuses on personal views on the quartet, will be followed by a masterclass, lecture or talk involving a more in-depth approach.

In ‘The Anatomy of String Quartet’ the Signum Quartett will reveal some relevant aspects of their characteristic and personal working process.

This presentation will be given in English.

Tags: Elaboration

Signum pratend

Early Beethoven

  • 09:30
  • 30.01.2020
  • Kleine zaal
  • € 18,50

Signum Quartett
Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet no. 3 in D op. 18/3
Konstantia Gourzi String Quartet no. 2 P-ILION, nine fragments of an eternity

In a subtle reference to Beethoven’s 250th anniversary, six festival days kick off with an Early Beethoven, in place of the previous festival’s Early Haydn series. Characterised by clarity, tension, humour and elegance, these quartets do not reflect the mature Beethoven’s complex and contrary character; instead, they reveal a young, ambitious Beethoven, embarking on the creation of an unparalleled quartet oeuvre.

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The work published as Beethoven’s third string quartet is actually the very first string quartet that he wrote. When one listens to it in this way – with the knowledge of what is yet to come – Beethoven opens his string quartet oeuvre in a surprisingly gentle and well-considered manner. The lyrical introduction seems to declare: ‘Here I am, I’m going to write string quartets, just like Haydn and Mozart’, but at the same time he is already subtly experimenting with the core issue – ‘here I am, but I’m going to do it in my own way.’

Signum Quartett-Thomas-for-gallery

Selected by / Signum Quartett

  • 17:00
  • 30.01.2020
  • Grote zaal
  • € 27

Signum Quartett
Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Franz Schubert String Quartet no. 8, D.112
Thomas Adès Arcadiana

Each day in Selected By a quartet will present two major works of its own choice in a one-hour performance without interval. The juxtaposition of the two pieces creates a strong contrast or tension, while in some cases their musical impact is reinforced by their relationship to each other.

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Arcadiana by Thomas Adès is a modern classic. For this contemporary idyll Adès drew inspiration from Schubert, Mozart and French Baroque paintings.

The Signum Quartett deliberately opted for an early Schubert: ‘Schubert’s early quartets are played relatively infrequently, perhaps because his idiom is not yet so ‘perfect’ as in his late quartets. However, this quartet, written when Schubert was 17, contains all the desire, grief and sotto voce cheerfulness that typically lies at the heart of his later works.’

Signum-Quartet-2016-serious-door-0B1A0921.28a-for-gallery

On the Night Plain

  • 20:15
  • 31.01.2020
  • Grote zaal
  • € 37

Arditti Quartet
Irvine Arditti violin
Ashot Sarkissjan violin
Ralf Ehlers viola
Lucas Fels cello

Calder Quartet
Benjamin Jacobson violin
Andrew Bulbrook violin
Jonathan Moerschel viola
Eric Byers cello

Signum Quartett
Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Annechien Koerselman stage direction
Ascon de Nijs set design

Arvo Pärt Fratres
Steve Reich Different Trains
Pascal Dusapin String Quartet no. 5

Valentin Silvestrov String Quartet no. 1
Henryk Górecki String Quartet no. 2, op. 64 ‘Quasi una fantasia

Morton Feldman Structures for String Quartet
Kevin Volans String Quartet no. 12

Terry Riley Cadenza on the Night Plain

The pre-concert talk will be given by Alex Ross (in English).

Concert ends at around 00:30hrs

Each festival edition features a concert on the Friday evening that breaks with all conventions: a staged, spectacularly unique event of unprecedented length that provides the string quartet with a new canvas to play with. Eight works for string quartet – each more unorthodox than the other – with Different Trains and Cadenza on the Night Plain as the programme’s two main focal points.

Embark on a four-hour journey exploring humanity and human endeavour – destruction, beauty, emotion and their natural limits. The journey takes in five substantial but highly unusual works of the string quartet canon: Fratres, Different Trains, Górecki’s second string quartet, Structures for String Quartet and Cadenza on the Night Plain.

The pre-concert talk will be given at 7.15pm by Alex Ross (in English)

Arditti Quartet
Calder b:w_Autumn de Wilde
Signum Quartet

Final concert String Quartet Biennale

  • 20:15
  • 01.02.2020
  • Grote zaal
  • € 39

Signum Quartett
Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Bram van Sambeek bassoon
Calefax

Ivy Priaulx Rainier String Quartet (Dutch première)
Carlo Gesualdo Madrigals from Books IV and V
Sebastian Fagerlund Quintet for string quartet and bassoon (world première)*
Carlo Gesualdo Madrigals from Books IV and V
Kevin Volans New work for string quartet and wind quintet (Dutch première)

* Co-commission String Quartet Biennale Amsterdam, West Cork Chamber Music Festival and Korsholm Festival

The concluding concert of the second String Quartet Biennale promises to be an exuberant feast. A week overflowing with string quartets closes with something a little different: the Signum Quartett with Bram van Sambeek on the bassoon and Calefax. We will hear no less than three premières – two freshly written and one rediscovered – interspersed with madrigals by Gesualdo. 

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The string quartet by the South African composer Ivy Priaulx Rainier was much admired in the 1930s and it was even the very first commercial recording of the Amadeus Quartet. Sebastian Fagerlund previously wrote a bassoon concerto for Bram van Sambeek. Now he takes on the rare combination of bassoon and string quartet. Arrangements of Gesualdo’s madrigals act as the connecting link weaving together these diverse works for strings and winds, which ultimately join forces to perform Kevin Volans’s new work.

Signum-Quartet
Bram van Sambeek
Calefax 2014Photo: Marco Borggreve
01 Kevin Volans 1 – Madrid, 4-dic-2018 (Fotógrafo José Pedro Salinas) (1)
Sebastian_Fagerlund-HR-photo-Simon_van_Boxtel-3094

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Calder b:w_Autumn de Wilde

Late Beethoven

Calder Quartet Benjamin Jacobson violin Andrew Bulbrook violin Jonathan Moerschel viola Eric Byers cello Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet no. 12, op. 127

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Coffee Talk

Lex Bohlmeijer moderator

Dudok-Quartet-Amsterdam-Photo-002-©-Marco-Borggreve

Early Beethoven

Dudok Quartet Judith van Driel violin Marleen Wester violin Marie-Louise de Jong viola David Faber cello Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet no. 6, op. 18/6 Olivier Messiaen Oraison (arr. David… Read more