Avaloch Farm Music Institute

I couldn’t have asked for a more inspiring start to the new season! With the Franklin Quartet, I spent some time in New Hampshire at the Avaloch Farm Music Institute, where we had the luxury of rehearsing and performing solidly f0r nine days, surrounded by stunning countryside, and nourished by exquisite home cooking.

In our cabin, surrounded by lush canopy and sprawling fields, we delved into quartets from the mid-to-late eighteenth century, delighting in works by Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven that represent the pinnacle of the string quartet canon, and discovering beautiful but little-known quartets by Boccherini, Cherubini, and Kraus. One of the many wonderful aspects of life at Avaloch Farm is the fact that musicians share their time there with other ensembles, eating and relaxing together, and sharing their art in concerts at the end of the day. Listening to Ned Rorem’s breathtaking song cycle ‘Ariel’, and to works completed only hours before, refreshed our ears and affirmed our work by reminding us that no matter what our repertoire or area of specialization as musicians, we are dealing with powerful stuff.

As part of Avaloch’s community outreach program, we performed at the Havenwood/Heritage Heights Retirement Community in Concord, NH, and the following day performed our new program ‘The Vienna Connection’ in recital at the First Church in Jaffrey, NH. Life in a string quartet demands give and take, negotiation, patience, generosity, and above all, trust, and all of that requires time and space to develop. We are so grateful to Deb and the entire team at Avaloch for dreaming up such a miracle, and for making their dream a reality so that we could make ours come true also.

Join us at 7.30pm on October 7th 2016 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Chestnut Hill, when we will perform our program ‘The Vienna Connection’ on the Five Fridays concert series.

The Franklins outside our cabin at Avaloch Farm Music Institute

The Franklins outside our cabin at Avaloch Farm Music Institute

The Franklin Quartet

Introducing The Franklin Quartet! I am honored to be a founding member (not a founding father..!) of this ensemble with Daniel Elyar (violin/viola), Marika Holmqvist (violin/viola) and Rebecca Humphrey (cello), performing 18th and 19th century string quartet repertoire on period instruments. We chose Benjamin Franklin as our namesake, embracing our Philadelphian roots, and celebrating the spirit of invention.

Our next concert happens on February 26th at S. Clement’s Church in Philadelphia, when we will perform Haydn’s ‘Seven Last Words of Christ’.

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Thank you to Tatiana Daubek for this lovely photo!