October 24, 2002

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Chamber Music Yellow Springs concert—
Artis Quartet returns to town

By Ken Champney

Seventeen years ago, the Artis String Quartet from Vienna, Austria, came to town and carried off first prize in the first Yellow Springs international chamber music competition.

The same four musicians will return to town on Sunday, Nov. 3, to perform in the second concert of the current Chamber Music Yellow Springs series.

Since their triumph here in 1985, the Artis Quartet has earned a reputation as one of the world’s finest, frequently appearing in European festivals and recording more than 20 CD’s, one of which won the Grand Prix International du Disque.

They approach a piece of music by first trying to understand the composer’s view, then playing it precisely while emphasizing a sensual tone. The Artis Quartet champions contemporary music but feels it is often played too abrasively.

Their program here includes W.A. Mozart’s Quartet in B-flat major, K. 589 (1790); Johannes Brahms’s Quartet in A minor (1873); and a new work by Tania Gabriella French, Quartet No. 2, “Communications” (2000).

The Mozart and the Brahms are staples of the classical repertoire. French (born 1963 in Alexandria, Va.) employs a mellifluous blend of romantic and contemporary sounds. You can get a taste of what’s to come by visiting her Web site, www.musicdreaming.com.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. in the First Presbyterian Church, 314 Xenia Avenue. Admission is $12 for adults and $4 for students. Tickets can be purchased in advance at The Emporium or reserved by leaving a message at 374-8800.

A CMYS 20th anniversary celebration will precede the concert, starting at 6 p.m., with appetizers and desserts at no charge.