The Danish String Quartet offers a masterclass for Penn State string students. The 90-minute session is hosted by Penn State violin professor James Lyon.
Presented by the Center for the Performing Arts, the Danish String Quartet will present a concert on Friday, April 6 at 7:30 p.m. in Schwab Auditorium. The program includes music by Bartók, Beethoven, and a set of Nordic folk tunes. For ticket information, please see the Center for the Performing Arts website.
In the 1990s, as children, three of them met at a summer music camp in the Danish countryside. The youngest students in attendance, they soon became friends and continued to get together to play music in the years that followed. Two decades later, these Scandinavian string players — three Danes and a Norwegian who joined the mix in 2008 — constitute “one of the best quartets before the public today” (Washington Post).
In its Penn State debut, the Danish String Quartet — violinists Frederik Øland and Rune Tonsgaard Sørensen, violist Asbjørn Nørgaard, and cellist Fredrik Schøyen Sjölin — will perform Béla Bartók’s String Quartet No. 1; Ludwig van Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 7, Op. 59, No. 1; and a selection of Nordic folk tunes from the ensemble’s albums Wood Works (2014) and Last Leaf (2017).
“In the talented hands of the Danish String Quartet these ‘Wood Works’ — traditional Nordic folksongs and dances — are buffed and polished to a glossy concert-hall sheen,” writes a Gramophone reviewer.
Winner of the London (now Wigmore Hall) International String Quartet Competition in 2009, the ensemble has earned a reputation for its integrated sound, impeccable intonation, judicious balance, and “rampaging energy” (The New Yorker).
The quartet’s ECM Records debut, Adès/Nørgård/Abrahamsen (2016), earned a five-star rating from a reviewer for The Guardian, who praises the album as “an exacting program requiring grace, grit, and clarity.”
“Do not lose track of this group,” writes a Boston Globe critic. “Even by today’s high standards, it offers something very special.”