Springfield, Ohio - How do you create a worthy grand finale for the 20th anniversary of the Wittenberg Series? You book the Emerson String Quartet, one of the world's foremost chamber ensemble and four-time Grammy Award-winner.
The final event of the 2001-2002 Wittenberg Series featuring these dynamic performers will be held at 8 p.m. Monday, April 8. Although the quartet is accustomed to performing in the famed Carnegie Hall, and there is a Carnegie Hall on Wittenberg's campus, the performance will take place in the beautiful Weaver Chapel.
"This has been a wonderfully successful year for both the community and Wittenberg," said Gwen Scheffel, Wittenberg Series Coordinator. "We've seen outstanding attendance at all events which must mean our selections have been engaging and entertaining."
Formed in the Bicentennial year of the United States, 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 they are joined by violinist Lawrence Dutton and cellist David Finckel. Based in New York City, the quartet is dedicated to performing classical repertoire while maintaining a strong commitment to the commissioning and performance of 20th century music.
Acclaimed for its insightful performances, brilliant artistry and technical mastery, the Emerson String Quartet has amassed an impressive list of achievements: an exclusive Universal Classics/Deutsche Grammophon recording contract, four Grammy Awards, regular appearances with virtually every chamber music series and festival worldwide, and an international reputation as a quartet that approaches its musical selections with equal parts technique and enthusiasm.
In 2000, the members of the quartet celebrated their 20th year as faculty at the University of Hartford's Hartt School of Music, where they have inaugurated a special training program for young quartets. In 1997, the Emerson String Quartet released a seven-CD box set of the complete quartets of Ludwig van Beethoven, an ambitious project that earned the ensemble its fourth Grammy for "Best Chamber Music Recording." The quartet won another Grammy in the same category, one Grammy for "Best Chamber Music Performance" and another for "Best Classical Album."
The quartet has been featured in The New York Times Magazine, USA Today, Elle, Bon Appetit, and in television appearances including PBS's "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" and A&E's "Biography of Beethoven."
As all Wittenberg Series events, this final event of the academic year is free and open to the public.
"It is our gift to the community," Scheffel said. "We hope you'll enjoy it as much as we do in offering it to you."