With a performance style that projects a visceral rhythmic energy combined with an almost nostalgic lyricism, American classical musical group, The Renaissance String Quartet, comes to Jamaica in May where they will play in a benefit concert.
They promise to deliver symphonic and melodious sounds at the concert which is slated to take place on Thursday (May 4). Themed ‘Beyond Boundaries’, the event will be held at the University of the West Indies Chapel in St. Andrew under the distinguished patronage of Olivia Grange, minister of culture, gender, entertainment and sport.
Founded in 2021, the group, consisting of violinists Randall Goosby, Jeremiah Blacklow, and Jameel Martin along with cellist Daniel Hass, hails from New York City in the United States (US) and believe that a quartet is the ideal musical example of a democratic effort that creates and expresses art on a scale larger than the sum of its parts.
Together, the four feel a responsibility to command a diverse repertoire of classic, underrepresented, and new works, so that they may contribute to the reclamation, redefinition, and continuation of a musical tradition that belongs to everyone.
“The group is coming to Jamaica for a week in the month of May. During that time, they will execute the concert for music enthusiasts. Proceeds of the event will go to the Immaculate Conception High School’s Symphony Orchestra and the Jamaica Red Cross (JRC). This concert is especially special for us at the JRC because this year, we celebrate our 75th of year in providing humanitarian support in Jamaica. Seventy five is a classic number and so, it is quite fitting! It’s expected to be a classy event with cocktails being served after the concert,” Yvonne Clarke, director-general of the Jamaica Red Cross told Our Today in an interview.
The members of the Renaissance String Quartet first met in 2012 while studying together at the Perlman Music Program in southeast New York. From that time, they developed a friendship which continues to grow as they play more music together. As students at the famed Juilliard School, the young men collaborated as a group for the first time, performing Robert Schumann’s Piano Quintet five times in as many days while working with Juilliard dancers.
They had their first chance to play together as a string quartet and were immediately encouraged by The Juilliard Quartet’s first violinist, Areta Zhulla, to form an official group. It was in that moment that the four realised they had to share their sound with the world.
The members of the group have unique careers in music, and brought together, each personal viewpoint serves to create a broad perspective and an intense individuality that is the source for the quartet’s already recognisable voice.
The Renaissance Quartet understands that representation matters and as such, they represent and articulate an inclusive vision of the future of classical music. This means that they see a culture of music where all lives and histories are welcomed and celebrated.
While they champion the quartets of Beethoven and Mozart, the quartet draws upon their diverse backgrounds to illuminate the lives and work of historically under-represented composers. In addition, they collaborate with living composers and write and interpret their own compositions and arrangements.
Tickets for the concert may be purchased at Jamaica Red Cross’ Kingston and St. Andrew branch, Fontana Pharmacy in Barbican, The Music Mart, and the Paper Place.
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