The Vera Quartet will perform for the first time in Việt Nam at the HCM City Conservatory of Music’s Concert Hall on April 20. — VNS File Photo
HCM CITY — The Vera Quartet, a string quartet from the world-renowned Curtis Institute of Music, will perform for the first time in Việt Nam in a show called "Curtis On Tour: Vera Quartet" to be held in HCM City on April 20.
The performance, which will take place at the HCM City Conservatory of Music, is part of a special string quartet concert under the banner of the Soul Live Project Series: The Modern Classics.
Organised by Amberstone Media in collaboration with the world-renowned Curtis Institute of Music in the US, the performance aims to continue the journey of bringing classical music closer to Vietnamese audiences.
The "Curtis On Tour: Vera Quartet" is a special gift to those who love the performing arts programmes of the Soul Live Project Series, which has brought many “firsts” to the city.
For the first time, a string quartet will perform in the Soul Live Project Series: The Modern Classics. The Vera Quartet (from the Curtis Institute of Music) will perform for the first time in Việt Nam, and, in another first, a concert in the Soul Live Project Series will be held in the cosy space of HCM City Conservatory of Music’s Concert Hall, organisers said.
After one year of operation, the Soul Live Project Series: The Modern Classics is now presenting its fourth concert. On the heels of performances by German baritone Benjamin Appl, Korean percussionist Gina Hyungi Lee, and the duo of Timothy Sun and Jacqueline Leung from Hong Kong, Vietnamese audiences will be treated to a new musical experience: a string quartet and its appealing role in chamber music.
A highlight of chamber music and classical music in general, a string quartet is a powerful ensemble. With only four instruments (two violins, one cello and one viola), a string quartet can pull off a wide range of sounds and bring out both the tenderness and intensity of a full symphonic piece.
At the performance on April 20, the Vera Quartet will perform three masterpieces from Beethoven, Hungarian composer Béla Bartók, and contemporary Asian composer Bright Sheng, who was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1989.
The concert will feature the vivid musical world of Bright Sheng, with the piece Silent Temple, an exploration of the composer’s memory of visiting an abandoned Buddhist temple.
Established in 2015, the Vera Quartet is in residence at Curtis Institute of Music, one of America's most prestigious art and music institutes, which trained prodigy pianist Lang Lang.
Following four years of touring throughout the US, Spain, South Korea, Hong Kong and Japan, the Vera Quartet won major awards at various music competitions, such as the Plowman Chamber Music Competition and the Chamber Music in Yellow Springs Competition for Emerging Professional Ensembles; top prizes from the M-Prize Chamber Arts Competition; and the St Lawrence award from the Wigmore Hall String Quartet Competition.
In 2017, they were selected as Young Artist in Residence at NPR’s (National Public Radio in the US) Performance Today programme.
As one of the most reputable schools in the US with the mission to educate and train exceptionally gifted international musicians, and with the Curtis on Tour initiative, The Curtis Institute of Music wants to share its “learn by doing” philosophy to all students and encourage them to create unique and impressive performance projects. Vietnam is one of the destinations for this meaningful programme.
By bringing the Vera Quartet to Việt Nam, the Soul Live Project Series hopes that the Curtis Institute of Music will not only inspire the local community with its passion for chamber music, but also act as encouragement for music students in Việt Nam to pursue their love of music. — VNS