• March 6, 2024

Concert 1

Concert 1

Concert 1 992 660 Welcome to Kingston Chamber Music Festival | Kingston Chamber Music Festival

Concert 1: Chopin and Schumann will be held Wednesday, July 24 at 7:30 PM in Edwards Hall at the University of Rhode Island.

The festival will kick off with Aaron Jay Kernis’ Air for Flute and String Quartet performed by Jennifer Grim (flute), Noah Geller (1st violin), Kyu-Young Kim (2nd violin), Che-Hung Chen (viola), and Pitnarry Shin (cello).

Kernis, a rare winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and Grammy Awards, has described this piece as being a love letter. “Opening with a lyrical question and answer theme, the work goes on to fully explore the flute’s possibilities, both expressive and emotional,” writes musicologist Maureen Buja. “It lets you appreciate the intrinsic qualities of not only the work but also the instrument.”

This selection will provide a fitting introduction to KCMF newcomer and flutist Jennifer Grim (pictured above by Tracey Hagen), who is described as “a deft, smooth flute soloist” (New York Times) and “a treasure” with “seemingly boundless talent” (Jon Sobel, BlogCritics).

Followed by Frédéric Chopin’s Cello Sonata in G. minor, Op. 65, the audience will be reminded why the “entirely dazzling” (San Francisco Chronicle) Clancy Newman and bringer of “emotional and pianistic pyrotechnics” (Philadelphia Inquirer) Natalie Zhu are one of Kingston’s favorite duos.

One of only nine works Chopin published during his lifetime that were written for instruments other than piano (although the piano still appears in every work he wrote), this sonata was the last one published during his lifetime.

Up next, Robert Schumann’s magnificent and widely acclaimed Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op.44 will be performed by Natalie Zhu (piano), Kyu-Young Kim (1st violin), Noah Geller (2nd violin), Che-Hung Chen (viola), and Pitnarry Shin (cello). Shin, who has been praised in Strad magazine for her beautiful tone and passionate interpretations in her New York debut recital at Weill Hall, Carnegie Hall, will be making her KCMF debut.

While Mozart, Beethoven, and Mendelssohn all offered models for the piano quartet, Schumann was the first German composer to write for the combination of piano and string quartet. This work revolutionized the instrumentation and musical character of the piano quintet and established it as a significant–and quintessentially Romantic–chamber music genre.