The Takács Quartet have made eight previous tours for Musica Viva. The secret behind the enduring love affair between this world-renowned ensemble and its Australian public is both the simplest and the hardest thing about chamber music: the interplay between four very different creative personalities as they meld their sound into an amazing unity.
Their concerts glow with warmth and friendship, a mutual affection and happiness whose effects reach far out into the auditorium. One of the top quartets in the business, it’s a given that their performances are of the highest quality. They enjoy a challenge and relish getting their teeth into demanding repertoire. And they take their listeners with them, pleased to pause for a moment to explain stories behind the music, and to make it an enjoyable, shared experience for everyone in the room.
Haydn’s op 76 was his final complete chamber music collection, and he threw at it everything he had learned about string quartets in his long and glorious career. Dvořák’s Quartet no 14 is his very last purely chamber piece, whose joyous Czech folk elements bring out a delicious zest in the open-hearted Takács playing style.
Carl Vine won’t say if the placement of his brand new work in programs full of late ones engenders a certain nervousness. But it is a fittingly respectful position for a composer of his established international reputation, and for one who has had a long personal friendship with the players on stage. In this piece the audience can easily sense the human connections which were the very beginnings of chamber music, and that make it still such an intimate and rewarding form.
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