The Fine Arts Quartet offers its 2nd community-sponsored Summer Festival this July in Milwaukee. The Festival will feature chamber versions of W.A. Mozart’s piano concertos.
Late in the 19th century, Ignaz Lachner wrote a chamber ensemble reduction of most of the Mozart piano concertos. Leaving the original piano part intact, Lachner transcribed the orchestra part for a quintet – two violins, viola, cello, and double bass. The addition of the double bass to the standard quartet offers a wider pitch and dynamic range. The string accompaniment creates a more transparent texture, offering fresh insights into Mozart’s works.
Milwaukee Symphony bassist Andrew Raciti will join the Quartet.
The Lachner chamber versions had been rarely performed until gifted Israeli pianist Goldstein worked with the Fine Arts Quartet to revisit the works. Naxos has recorded their performance of Mozart’s Piano Concertos Nos. 20, 21, 23 and 24. They performed them for Milwaukee audiences in 2014 and 2016.
Continuing this project, Alon Goldstein will join the Fine Arts Quartet at Saint John’s On The Lake to perform Mozart’s Piano Concertos Nos. 9 and 17. They too will be released by Naxos.
As Lachner had not transcribed Mozart’s concerto for two pianos, No. 20, K.365. Cliff Colnot, a composer on the faculty of Roosevelt University in Chicago has now addressed that gap. A friend of the Fine Arts Quartet, he has dedicated the work to them. The Quartet will offer a world premiere performance on July 18 at the Zelazo Center. Duo-pianists, Giselle and Fabio Witkowski, will perform. They appeared individually at last year’s Milwaukee Festival.
On July 11, the Prometheus Trio pianist Stefanie Jacob will provide an overview of Mozart’s Piano Concertos in a discussion and listening session as a guest of the on-going Listening Together series offered at Saint John’s On The Lake.
The first Festival concert, on July 12, features a rarely played String Sextet by Dvořák. Milwaukee Symphony violist Alejandro Duquee and cellist Scott Tisdel join the Quartet for this performance.