Pavel Haas Quartet to perform in Prague for the Bohuslav Martinů Institute

The fifth benefit concert in support of research projects of the Bohuslav Martinů Institute will see the Pavel Haas Quartet perform at Kaiserstein Palace in Lesser Town Square on 8 November. Due to its busy schedule, a home performance is a rare event for what is one of the most successful Czech ensembles of our day. The concert will comprise string quartets by Béla Bartók and Bohuslav Martinů. 

Pavel Haas Quartet Foto Marco Borggreve

“The Pavel Haas Quartet will be very happy to perform at this concert, we gladly accepted Aleš Březina’s invitation. The programme will include B. Martinů’s Second Quartet, which will launch our big project of the complete performances of all the string quartets of the composer, whose seven numbered compositions of this type place him among the major representatives of the genre in twentieth-century music,” says the ensemble’s violist Jiří Kabát. The Pavel Haas Quartet is already familiar with the works of Bohuslav Martinů – for example, the ensemble gave several performances of Concerto for String Quartet and Orchestra with the Essener Philharmoniker under the baton of Tomáš Netopil in 2017, followed by Martinů’s String Sextet at Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie a year later. For their charity concert, the Pavel Haas Quartet has chosen to present Martinů’s groundbreaking String Quartet No. 2 alongside Béla Bartók’s String Quartet No. 4.

The main aim of the benefit concert is to support the Bohuslav Martinů Complete Edition, the preparation of which has been entrusted to the Bohuslav Martinů Institute by the Bohuslav Martinů Foundation in Prague. Since its 2015 launch, the project has already finished seven volumes, which have been published by Bärenreiter. The very first volume won the Best Edition Award at the Musikmesse in Frankfurt and enjoyed excellent reviews in leading music journals both at home and abroad (NOTES lauded it as “a model of its kind”). All of the published volumes have entered into performance practice, are being used in recording projects, and are spearheading a new standard for editions of twentieth-century music.

Past years have seen pro bono performances at benefit concerts for the institute by numerous artists of international repute, such as the violinist Josef Špaček and the pianist Miroslav Sekera, or the soprano Martina Janková together with the baritone Tomáš Král and the pianist Ivo Kahánek, or the harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani.

The Pavel Haas Quartet was founded in 2002 by the violinist Veronika Jarůšková and the violist Pavel Nikl. Competition triumphs at the Prague Spring and Premio Paolo Borciani in Reggio Emilia, Italy, in 2005 quickly established the quartet as a world-class chamber ensemble. The Pavel Haas Quartet performs at leading concert venues around the world, and all of its album releases have been honoured with prestigious international music critic awards. In 2019 Gramophone listed the ensemble as “one of the top 10 string quartets of today”.

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