The Elements Quartet, performing on Mercer's campus free of charge Friday, March 19, 7:30 p.m., may not look like the typical classical music ensemble. As the New York Times has proclaimed, they are "casual, but only in attire."
Called "an important new ensemble" by composer David Del Tredici, the Elements Quartet is a partnership of highly-skilled musicians. They are Jeffrey Multer and Evan Mirapaul on violin, Danielle Farina on viola and Peter Seidenberg on cello.
In contrast to some quartets, which form when their players are students, the four musicians of the Elements Quartet enjoyed successful individual careers in major international orchestras and distinguished chamber music ensembles before their mutual love for the quartet sound brought them together.
Founded in the summer of 1999, the ensemble has already won acclaim for its passionate performances and dynamic programs. The quartet's repertoire ranges from popular masterpieces to neglected treasures and from Baroque classics to newly commissioned works by today's most celebrated composers—an eclectic and expansive view of the quartet literature that is unified by the group's keen musicianship and its fresh insights into how chamber music can connect with today's listeners.
The Quartet carries forward a long chamber music tradition, having studied with members of the Cleveland, Tokyo, Juilliard, and Guarneri quartets.
Based in the New York metropolitan area, the Elements Quartet have performed to critical acclaim at important venues, including Rutgers SummerFest, the Caramoor Festival, the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival/Yale School of Music, and the Kent/Blossom Music Festival.
In 2002, the group was honored by being awarded the Norfolk/Yale Debut Prize for outstanding new ensemble. In Fall 2000, the quartet was featured on MetroArts 13 in a PBS program from the Caramoor Festival with Peter Oundjian, Artistic Director of the Caramoor Festival.
The quartet has received grants from the Arthur Judson Foundation and the National Orchestral Association for the commission of a new string quartet by noted New Jersey composer David Sampson. They received a major grant from the Koussevitzky Foundation to commission the first string quartet by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer David Del Tredici.
They will be performing new works by Regina Carter, John Corigliano, and Paul Schoenfield, as well as Beethoven's String Quartet #14, Op. 131 in C# minor. The concert will be held in Neva Langley Fickling Hall of the McCorkle Music building on the Mercer campus, 1400 Coleman Ave, Friday, March 19, 7:30 p.m. The event is free of charge, but reservations should be made by calling 478-301-2748.