Sunday 20 August
Ākarana Piano Quartet
Robert Ashworth (viola), Chen Cao (cello),
Sarah Watkins (piano), Andrew Beer (violin)
Piano Quartet No 1 in G minor, K478
Phantasie Quartet in F# minor, H94
New commission after Paul Klee’s New Harmony
Piano Quartet No 2 in Eb Major, Op 87
Their programme brings us two of the greatest and most popular works in the piano quartet repertoire – Mozart’s K478 and Dvořák’s Opus 87.
Another piano quartet that is less familiar is the Phantasie Quartet by English composer Frank Bridge. Bridge is best known through his most famous pupil, Benjamin Britten, who recognized his teacher’s genius and frequently programmed his works.
The Phantasie Quartet, completed in June 1910, reveals Bridge’s early style when he had not yet ventured away from late nineteenth-century harmonic language. It is charming music, filled with many memorable melodies.
Also on the programme will be a new commission by New Zealand composer Janet Jennings. A graduate of the Universities of Waikato and Auckland, her works are regularly performed in NZ and overseas. She is particularly known for her vocal works and insists that new music should be accessible and enjoyable for both performers and listeners.