Alexander String Quartet – Passionate & Soulful

Zakarias Grafiloviolin
Frederick Lifsitzviolin
Paul Yarbroughviola
Sandy Wilsoncello

ASQ 300X168Celebrated for their performances of “uncompromising power, intensity and spiritual depth”, the internationally acclaimed Alexander String Quartet will return to Lincoln Hall on Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 2:00 PM.  They promise to warm your hearts and lift late-winter spirits with passionate and soulful performances of master chamber works – truly world class music making right here in the Allegheny River Valley.

Celebrating its 35th Anniversary in 2016, the Alexander String Quartet has performed in the major music capitals of five continents, securing its standing among the world’s premier ensembles. Widely admired for its interpretations of Beethoven, Mozart, and Shostakovich, the quartet’s recordings have won international critical acclaim.

Join us and be inspired by these consummate artists who critics have said “seemed not so much to be playing the music as breathing it.”

Tickets are Adults $25, Members $20 and Students $5.  Call to reserve:  724-659-3153 or buy online here.

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Alexander String Quartet

Zakarias Grafilo and Frederik Lifsitz, violins
Paul Yarbrough, viola    Sandy Wilson, cello

Allegheny RiverStone Center for the Arts welcomes back the Alexander String Quartet to perform a chamber music concert of some of the most beloved works of the string quartet literature on Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 2:00 PM in Lincoln Hall.

Program to be announced soon.  Please check back for details.
 

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The Alexander String Quartet is represented by
BesenArts LLC
7 Delaney Place
Tenafly, NJ 07670-1607
The Alexander String Quartet records for Foghorn Classics

2021

Hailed internationally for their consummate artistry, the Alexander String Quartet is one of the world premier string quartets.

“Never have I heard such keen awareness of this dimension of the score as I hear it in this performance. To say that the ensemble plays with a unanimity of attack, articulate phrasing, and penetrating tone is almost beside the point. Today, those aspects of execution are expected from the world’s topflight chamber music players. But what really sets these readings apart for me is the ways in which these musicians connect the dots, so to speak, and find just the right moments and just the right ways in which to reveal to us Mozart’s underlying grand plan.… This is truly phenomenal both in terms of the playing and the recording. … That said, the only word to describe the Alexander Quartet members and Joyce Yang’s playing of [The Piano Quartet in E-flat Major, K 493] is exquisite.”
JERRY DUBINS, FANFARE MAGAZINE
(Apotheosis, vol. 2 — Mozart: The Piano Quartets, FCL2018)

“You want the short review? This is the best new music disc I have heard this year, and you should buy it. … Cox seems to have a thing for quartet writing, and if she stops at two it will be a tragedy. Color, exquisite rhythmic turns, evocative harmonies, and coalescence of melodic invention all conspire to make her music richly rewarding and horizon-expanding. The Alexander plays perfectly, and the Foghorn sound is great. An enthusiastic recommendation!”
STEPHEN RITTER, AUDIOPHILE AUDITION (5 Star Review! Dec. 2015)
(Patagón — Works by Cindy Cox, FCL2015)

“I felt then that I had found my perfect recording of these two favourite works. While it remains enjoyable, Joyce Yang and the Alexanders have completely trumped it. Quite how they have managed to find new things to say about such standard repertoire is quite beyond me, but there is something to marvel at around every corner.”
DAVID BARKER, MUSIC WEB INTERNATIONAL (A MusicWeb International Recording of the Year)
(Brahms & Schumann — The Piano Quintets, FCL2014)

“The talented Alexanders and brilliant Joyce Yang take on two towers of 19th century chamber music, the Brahms Piano Quintet in f Op 34 and the Schumann Piano Quintet in Eb op 44. Frankly any recording that elicits a positive comment about Brahms from me is worth noting. No stodgy, elegant (read dull and technical) readings here, these are gutsy, lively, exciting and maybe even a bit edgy performances. Excellent production, including concise yet informative notes.”
DON CLARK, PICTURES ON SILENCE, “BAKER’S DOZEN BEST OF 2014”
(Brahms & Schumann: The Piano Quintets, FCL2014)

“I’m not often as bowled over by core repertoire recordings as I was by this one. After handing off the album to a friend, the second opinion came back positive too: “The Alexanders really have a great feel for Brahms,” he said, and then he borrowed all the other ASQ albums I had.”
BRIAN REINHART, MUSIC WEB INTERNATIONAL (A MusicWeb International Recording of the Year)
(Brahms & Schumann — The Piano Quintets, FCL2014)

“This review is going to be short, because so highly-acclaimed is this disc that my opinion isn’t particularly important, if ever it was. Simply put, after delighting the critical establishment with some marvelous Piano Quintets, the Alexander String Quartet and friends turn in an unbelievable set of the Brahms Sextets and Quintets for Strings. Violist Toby Appel joins the Quartet throughout the program and easily reminds me how beautiful an instrument the viola can be. Nor is cellist David Requiro a mere guest artist. Folks, this is what chamber music is about! Deeply moving, highly involved playing is backed by exceptional sound quality that is warm and shows the genuine partnership between the players. … After 30 years, the Alexander String Quartet is demanding that we take a listen, just as after all this time, Brahms can still surprise us. These are deeply personal works in equally personal performances. Don’t miss them.”
BRIAN WIGMAN, CLASSICAL NET
(Brahms String Quintets and Sextets — 2 CDs, FCL2012)

“Dream-come-true performances from the excellent Alexander String Quartet. As they did during the Haydn Quartet that opened the concert, the players impressed with their sure ensemble, lyricism, accurate pitch, handsome sound and technical fluidity.”
THE BOSTON GLOBE

 

Click on a CD image or FoghornClassics.com to order any CD in stock

Cindy Cox & Schumann Piano Quintets

MAHLER SONG CYCLES

In meinem Himmel

Alexander String Quartet with mezzo soprano Kindra Scharich

FoghornClassics: FCL2019

Cindy Cox & Schumann Piano Quintets

APOTHEOSIS, VOLUME 2

MOZART: THE PIANO QUARTETS

Alexander String Quartet with pianist, Joyce Yang

FoghornClassics: FCL2018

Covert art for Cindy Cox & Schumann Piano Quintets features the composer's photo of eroded boulders jutting out of the water in Patagonia

CINDY COX: PATAGÓN

ELEGY for solo violin

Columba aspexit, after Hildegard von Bingen in four movements, played without pause

Patagón

Alexander String Quartet

FoghornClassics: FCL2015

Cover art for Brahms & Schumann Piano Quintets with image of Pacific Coast rock formations, photo by Rory Earnshaw

BRAHMS & SCHUMANN: THE PIANO QUINTETS

Robert Schumann: Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 44
Alexander String Quartet with pianist, Joyce Yang

Johannes Brahms: Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34
Alexander String Quartet with pianist, Joyce Yang

FoghornClassics: FCL2014

Cover art for Brahms String Quintets & Sextets features Lake Tahoe pier, photo by Rory Earnshaw

BRAHMS STRING QUINTETS & SEXTETS

Johannes Brahms:
String Sextet No. 1 in B-flat Major, Op. 18
String Sextet No. 2 in G Major, Op. 36
Alexander String Quartet with violist, Toby Appel and cellist, David Requiro

String Quintet No. 1 in F Major, Op. 88
String Quintet No. 2 in G Major, Op. 111
Alexander String Quartet with violist, Toby Appel

2 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL2012

Bartok & Kodaly

BARTÓK & KODÁLY

Béla Bartók:
String Quartet No. 1 Op. 7, Sz. 40
String Quartet No. 3, Sz. 85
String Quartet No. 5, Sz. 102
String Quartet No. 2 Op. 17, Sz. 67
String Quartet No. 4, Sz. 91
String Quartet No. 6, Sz. 114

Zoltán Kodály:
String Quartet No. 1, Op. 2
String Quartet No. 2, Op. 10

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL2009

Cover art for Gershwin & Kern with black and white photo of overlapping columns, photo by Rory Earnshaw

GERSHWIN & KERN

George Gershwin: “Porgy & Bess” Suite (arr. Carl Davis)
Alexander String Quartet with clarinetist, Joan Enric Lluna

Jerome Kern: Six Famous Songs from the Musical Comedies of Kern
George Gershwin: Lullaby for String Quartet
Alexander String Quartet

FoghornClassics: FCL2008

in Friendship

in FRIENDSHIP

César Cano: Clarinet Quintet, Op. 74
Johannes Brahms: Clarinet Quintet in B Minor, Op. 115

Alexander String Quartet with clarinetist, Joan Enric Lluna

FoghornClassics: FCL2007

Strings Attached

WITH STRINGS ATTACHED

Veronika Krausas: language of the birds
Stephen Leek: Hollow Stone
Johannes Brahms (tr. Grafilo): Four Songs, Op. 92
Johannes Brahms (tr. Grafilo): Two Piano Pieces
Ludwig van Beethoven: Elegiac Song, Op. 118
Michael Gandolfi: Winter Light
Paul Chihara: Clair de Lune

Alexander String Quartet with the San Francisco Choral Artists

FoghornClassics: FCL2006

Mendelssohn & Schubert

MENDELSSOHN & SCHUBERT

Felix Mendelssohn: String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 13
Franz Schubert: Quartettsatz in C Minor, D. 703
Afiara String Quartet

Felix Mendelssohn: Octet for Strings in E-flat Major, Op. 20
Alexander String Quartet & Afiara String Quartet

FoghornClassics: FCL1995

Beethoven: Complete Quartets

BEETHOVEN: COMPLETE STRING QUARTETS

Ludwig van Beethoven:
Complete String Quartet Cycle

9 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL2005 (includes FCL1996, FCL1999 & FCL2002)

Beethoven: Late Quartets

BEETHOVEN: LATE STRING QUARTETS

Ludwig van Beethoven:
String Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 127
String Quartet in C-sharp Minor, Op. 131
String Quartet in B-flat Major, Op. 130
Grosse Fuge, Op. 133
String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 132
String Quartet in F Major, Op. 135

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL2002

Beethoven: Middle Quartets

BEEETHOVEN: MIDDLE STRING QUARTETS

Ludwig van Beethoven:
String Quartet in F Major, Op. 59 No. 1, “Rasumovsky”
String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 59 No. 2, “Rasumovsky”
String Quartet in C Major, Op. 59 No. 3, “Rasumovsky”
String Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 74, “Harp”
String Quartet in F Minor, Op. 95, “Serioso”

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL1999

Beethoven: Early Quartets

BEETHOVEN: EARLY STRING QUARTETS

Ludwig van Beethoven:
String Quartet in F Major, Op. 18 No. 1
String Quartet in G Major, Op. 18 No. 2
String Quartet in D Major, Op. 18 No. 3
String Quartet in C Minor, Op. 18 No. 4
String Quartet in A Major, Op. 18 No. 5
String Quartet in B-flat Major, Op. 18 No. 6

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL1996

Retrospections

RETROSPECTIONS

Wayne Peterson:
String Quartet No. 3, “Pop Sweet” (1998)
String Quartet No. 2 (1991)
String Quartet No. 1 (1983)

FoghornClassics: FCL1994

Fragments Vol. 2

FRAGMENTS VOLUME 2:
SHOSTAKOVICH STRING QUARTET CYCLE

Dmitri Shostakovich:
String Quartets Nos. 8-15
World Premiere Recording of an Unfinished String Quartet Movement
Two Preludes & Fugues Nos. 1 & 17

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL1991

Fragments Vol. 1

FRAGMENTS VOLUME 1:
SHOSTAKOVICH STRING QUARTET CYCLE

Dmitri Shostakovich:
String Quartets Nos. 1-7
Piano Quintet with pianist, Roger Woodward
Two Preludes & Fugues Nos. 1 & 17

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL1988

Homage

HOMAGE: THE SIX MOZART QUARTETS
DEDICATED TO HAYDN

Wolfgang A. Mozart:
String Quartet in G Major, KV 378
String Quartet in D Minor, KV 421
String Quartet in E-flat Major, KV 428
String Quartet in B-flat Major, KV 458, “Hunt”
String Quartet in A Major, KV 464
String Quartet in C Major, KV 465, “Dissonant”

3 Disc CD Set
FoghornClassics: FCL1985

Renascence

RENASCENCE

Béla Bartók: String Quartet No. 6, Sz. 114
Maurice Ravel: String Quartet in F
J.S. Bach: Fugue in E-flat Major, BWV 876

FoghornClassics: FCL1984

Mendelssohn & Schumann

MENDELSSOHN & SCHUMANN

Felix Mendelssohn: String Quartet in F Minor, Op. 80
Robert Schumann: Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 44
Alexander String Quartet with pianist, James Tocco

FoghornClassics: FCL1983

Quintessence

QUINTESSENCE

Johannes Brahms: Clarinet Quintet in B Minor, Op. 115
Wolfgang Mozart: Clarinet Quintet in A Major, KV 581
Alexander String Quartet with clarinetist, Joan Enric Lluna

FoghornClassics: FCL1982

**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

BARBER, COPLAND & GERSHWIN QUARTETS

Samuel Barber: Serenade, Op. 1 & Dover Beach, Op. 3
with Nathaniel Watson, Baritone
Aaron Copland: Movement & Two Pieces
George Gershwin: Lullaby

Amplitude: CLCD-2009
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

DEBUSSY & RAVEL QUARTETS

Claude Debussy: Quartet in G Minor, Op. 10
Maurice Ravel: Quartet in F Major

Gall (Formerly Gallo): CD-512
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

HAYDN & SCHUBERT QUARTETS

Franz Joseph Haydn: Quartet in B-flat Major,
Op. 76, No. 4, “Sunrise”
Franz Schubert: Quartet in G Major, Op. 161, D. 887

Verdi Records: 9123
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOLS. 1 – 9
Ludwig van Beethoven

9 Disc CD Set

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-63637-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 1
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 18 No. 1 in F Major
Quartet Op. 18 No. 5 in A Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-63673-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 2
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 18 No. 2 in G Major
Quartet Op. 18 No. 6 in B-flat Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-49682-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 3
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 18 No. 3 in D Major
Quartet Op. 18 No. 4 in C Minor

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-39103-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 4
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 59 No. 1 in F Major “Rasumovsky”
Quartet Op. 74 in E-flat Major “Harp”

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-59224-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 5
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 59 No. 2 in E Minor
Quartet Op. 59 No. 3 in C Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-46491-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 6
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 95 in F Minor
Quartet Op. 127 in E-flat Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-63674-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 7
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet No. 13 Op. 130 in B-flat Major
Grosse Fuge Op. 133 in B-flat Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-54455-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 8
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet Op. 131 in C-sharp Minor
Quartet Op. 135 in F Major

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-63675-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

Not Available!

COMPLETE QUARTETS: VOL. 9
Ludwig van Beethoven

Quartet No. 15 in A Minor, Op. 132

Arte Nova Classics: 74321-37312-2
**OUT OF PRINT**

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THE ALEXANDER STRING QUARTET

Alexander String Quartet outside

Having celebrated its 35th Anniversary in 2016, the Alexander String Quartet has performed in the major music capitals of five continents, securing its standing among the world’s premier ensembles. Widely admired for its interpretations of Beethoven, Mozart, and Shostakovich, the quartet’s recordings of the Beethoven cycle (twice), Bartók, and Shostakovich cycle have won international critical acclaim. The quartet has also established itself as an important advocate of new music through over 25 commissions from such composers as Jake Heggie, Cindy Cox, Augusta Read Thomas, Robert Greenberg, Martin Bresnick, Cesar Cano, and Pulitzer Prize-winner Wayne Peterson. A new work by Tarik O’Regan, commissioned for the Alexander by the Boise Chamber Music Series, will have its premiere in 2016.

The Alexander String Quartet is a major artistic presence in its home base of San Francisco, serving since 1989 as Ensemble in Residence of San Francisco Performances and Directors of the Morrison Chamber Music Center in the College of Liberal and Creative Arts at San Francisco State University.

The Alexander String Quartet’s annual calendar of concerts includes engagements at major halls throughout North America and Europe.  The quartet has appeared at Lincoln Center, the 92nd Street Y, and the Metropolitan Museum in New York City; Jordan Hall in Boston; the Library of Congress and Dumbarton Oaks in Washington; and chamber music societies and universities across the North American continent.  Recent overseas tours have brought them to the U.K., the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, France, Greece, the Republic of Georgia, Argentina, Panamá, and the Philippines. They will return to Poland for their debut performances at the Beethoven Easter Festival in 2015.

Among the fine musicians with whom the Alexander String Quartet has collaborated are pianists Joyce Yang, Roger Woodward, Anne-Marie McDermott, Menachem Pressler, and Jeremy Menuhin; clarinetists Joan Enric Lluna, David Shifrin, Richard Stoltzman, and Eli Eban; soprano Elly Ameling; mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato; cellists Lynn Harrell, Sadao Harada, and David Requiro; and jazz greats Branford Marsalis, David Sanchez, and Andrew Speight. The quartet has worked with many composers including Aaron Copland, George Crumb, and Elliott Carter, and has long enjoyed a close relationship with composer-lecturer Robert Greenberg, performing numerous lecture-concerts with him annually.

The Alexander String Quartet added considerably to its distinguished and wide-ranging discography over the past decade, now recording exclusively for the FoghornClassics label. There were three major releases in the 2013-2014 season: The combined string quartet cycles of Bartók and Kodály, recorded on the renowned Ellen M. Egger matched quartet of instruments built by San Francisco luthier, Francis Kuttner (If ever an album had “Grammy nominee” written on its front cover, this is it.” –Audiophile Audition); the string quintets and sextets of Brahms with Toby Appel and David Requiro (“a uniquely detailed, transparent warmth” –Strings Magazine); and the Schumann and Brahms piano quintets with Joyce Yang (“passionate, soulful readings of two pinnacles of the chamber repertory” –The New York Times).  Their recording of music of Gershwin and Kern was released in the summer of 2012, following the spring 2012 recording of the clarinet quintet of Brahms and a new quintet from César Cano, in collaboration with Joan Enric Lluna, as well as a disc in collaboration with the San Francisco Choral Artists.  Next to be released will be an album of works by Cindy Cox.

The Alexander’s 2009 release of the complete Beethoven cycle was described by Music Web International as performances  “uncompromising in power, intensity and spiritual depth,” while Strings Magazine described the set as “a landmark journey through the greatest of all quartet cycles.”  The FoghornClassics label released a three-CD set (Homage) of the Mozart quartets dedicated to Haydn in 2004.  Foghorn released the a six-CD album (Fragments) of the complete Shostakovich quartets in 2006 and 2007, and a recording of the complete quartets of Pulitzer prize-winning San Francisco composer, Wayne Peterson, was released in the spring of 2008.  BMG Classics released the quartet’s first recording of Beethoven cycle on its Arte Nova label to tremendous critical acclaim in 1999.

ASQ Lincoln Hall
Alexander String Quartet in Lincoln Hall

 

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