The Signum Quartet launch the New Year for the Chichester Chamber Concerts series.
Florian Donderer (violin), Annette Walther (violin), Xandi van Dijk (viola) and Thomas Schmitz (cello) will play Haydn – String Quartet in C Op 20 No 2; Bruno Mantovani – String Quartet No 3; and Beethoven – String Quartet Op 59 No 3 in the Assembly Room, Chichester Council House, North Street, Chichester on Thursday, January 26 at 7.30pm.
The Signum Quartet has won numerous awards and has been a member of the BBC New Generation Artists’ Scheme.
Cellist Thomas said: “Two of us met in the Landesjugendorchester (County Youth Orchestra) and started playing chamber music. Next violist Xandi joined the quartet and finally we met Florian while playing together in the Ensemble Ruhr, and Florian became leader of the quartet.
“We came together for the love of playing chamber music. This developed fairly soon into taking the quartet more seriously and having chamber music coaching and masterclasses while still at college. The quartet was successful in Germany fairly early on, winning some national competitions. We continued our studies with the Melos, Alban Berg and Artemis Quartets which led to a deeper understanding of string quartet culture, and ultimately to the decision to pursue the quartet full time.
“It is a competitive world. We believe rehearsing together regularly, continually aiming to improve, to refine and deepen our understanding of the music and of ensemble playing and of each other is a good way to become competitive.
“We aim to have an open attitude to everything new, especially new music and a desire to search for new ways of expressing older repertoire. We search for new sounds and colours in our playing.
“We are four distinct personalities with a common goal and a broad range of musical tastes which complement and enrich each other.
“We like to think of ourselves as musically omnivorous, with interests ranging from the pre-baroque to the most contemporary and recent. Despite having new music as one of our focal points, we care deeply for the classical and romantic canon and see this as our musical point of departure – Haydn, Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven and Brahms particularly, as well as Schumann, Dvorak, Janacek and the lesser known masters of the 20th century (Berg, Webern, Bartok, Schulhoff, Schnittke to name a few).
“Our repertoire has broadened and deepened in various directions as we get to know more composers and their works. The last few years have seen an increased interest in contemporary music."
Tickets on 01243 781312.
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