Ames Piano Quartet to perform at Lincoln Middle School March 12

The Ames Piano Quartet, the most recorded piano quartet in the country, will perform music by Mozart, Brahms and American composer Paul Schoenfield at 8 p.m. Saturday March 12 at Lincoln Middle School, 1613 James St. (just west of Teall Avenue). The concert is presented by Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music.

The Ames Piano Quartet has released 11 internationally-acclaimed CDs covering much of the extensive literature composed for their combination of instruments. Members of the quartet are violinist Mahlon Darlington, violist Jonathan Sturm, cellist George Work and pianist William David. The Ames Piano Quartet is the resident chamber ensemble at Iowa State University.

Since its formation in 1976, the ensemble has toured throughout the United States and internationally, including concerts in France, Austria and the Far East. They were the first chamber music group in over forty years to perform in Cuba.

Mozart's publisher is the one to thank for the first piece on the program, his Piano Quartet in G minor, K. 478. The publisher thought a piece like this would sell, so Mozart obliged him by creating a masterpiece. The concluding movement demonstrates Mozart's unending inventiveness. It contains six themes, each one lovelier than the last.

Next comes a piece by the American composer Paul Schoenfield, who often makes use of popular and folk themes in his music. His "Carolina Reveille" is a set of variations based on the popular tune, "Carolina in the Morning."

The concluding work will be the Piano Quartet No. 1 by Johannes Brahms, who was himself a pianist. As a young man, Brahms liked to accompany a Hungarian violinist well versed in his country's folk music. The final movement is a fiery Presto inspired by gypsy rhythms.

Tickets for the concert are $20 ($15 senior, $10 student), and will be available at the door. For information, visit syracusefriendsofchambermusic.org or call 682-7720.

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