Borromeo Bartok Quartet Marathon Coming Soon


My intense and exhausting pleasure of hearing the foursome play these works last year still casts shadows over my listening today. I was therefore thrilled to have the chance to talk with violinist Kristopher Tong about the forthcoming surfeit on December 20th. Too much of a good thing can be wonderful! Just ask Mae West    [continued]

Comments Off on Borromeo Bartok Quartet Marathon Coming Soon

Borromeos: Old Made New in Dorchester


Boston’s favorite quartet brought youthful zest and fresh insights to Beethoven’s Op. 130 (with the Great Fugue Op. 133) and Schubert’s String Quartet in G Major, D. 887 for the opening concert of Ashmont Hill Chamber Music’s 2015 season at the freshly renovated Peabody Hall.     [continued]

Comments Off on Borromeos: Old Made New in Dorchester

Borromeo: Intensity with a Spot of Softness


Another potent presentation of late Schubert and late Beethoven by the esteemed quartet, nonetheless containing a few ordinary moments, along with neglect of some amazing music history, came on Thursday at Jordan Hall.     [continued]

Comments Off on Borromeo: Intensity with a Spot of Softness

Borromeos and Lesser: Ineffable Performances


At last Thursday’s concert at Rockport Chamber Music Festival the Borrromeo Quartet appeared for its 19th consecutive season. Cellist Laurence Lesser joined the foursome in the last piece, Schubert’s magisterial late quintet, which bestowed 45 minutes of grace and ineffable awe.     [continued]

Comments Off on Borromeos and Lesser: Ineffable Performances

Profound Bartok from Borromeo


The Borromeo Quartet walked into Jordan Hall Wednesday night and gave what was easily the most profound and intellectually engaging experience I have had this concert season. The program was simply all six of the string quartets of Bela Bartòk.     [continued]

1 Comment »

Borromeo’s Dvořák: Transcendent and Rocking


Sunday afternoon at Calderwood Hall, the Borromeo string quartet served up knockout DvořákQuartet No. 11, and, with Meng-Chieh Liu, the famous Piano Quintet No. 2. The players covered themselves in glory.   [continued]

Comments Off on Borromeo’s Dvořák: Transcendent and Rocking

The Borromeo With The Strange and Beautiful


Monday night the Borromeo String Quartet treated us to a seldom-heard Stravinsky quartet, a near-premier of a quartet by Daniel Brewbaker, and an old favorite, Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden,” all dedicated to the memory of Francesca Rullman. The venue, the Provincetown Art Association and Museum, is a new and beautiful space, fortunately designed for concerts as well as art.     [continued]


Musical Coral Reef: Borromeo Quartet


An appreciative audience fought post-Thanksgiving tryptophan coma for another magnificent (and free) program from Borromeo String Quartet at Jordan Hall. Why would the New England Conservatory, at its “Mahler Unleashed” concert series, present their quartet in residence playing Schoenberg’s String Quartet in D and Schubert’s D-Minor “Death and the Maiden” quartet? Because both works were near and dear to Mahler’s heart.   [continued]

Comments Off on Musical Coral Reef: Borromeo Quartet

The Borromeo Connects with Greenhouse


The Borromeo String Quartet with cellist Laurence Lesser paid tribute to Bernard Greenhouse on August 12, in Wellfleet. A founder and long-time member of the Beaux-Arts Trio, Greenhouse died in Wellfleet this past May, at age 95. The performance began with a moving video portrait of him, put together by his long-time student and friend, Dr. Thomas Delbanco. Mohammed Fairouz’s Choral Fantasy for String Quartet, commissioned by Borromeo, used a Bach chorale, with Middle Eastern, klezmer, even jazz. Beethoven’s String quartet in E-flat Major, Opus 74, was enhanced by the Borromeo’s unusual seating arrangement. Kitchen played in the adagio as I imagine Bernie Greenhouse would have – almost melodramatic, with wide vibrato — a wonderful way to connect with the deceased master.  Schubert’s great cello quintet ended the program.          [Click title for full review.]    [continued]


High Fives for Six Quartets!


Six ensembles from NEC’s Professional String Quartet Training Program participated in a troika of concerts at Jordan Hall celebrating the program and NEC’s 150th Anniversary.    [continued]

Comments Off on High Fives for Six Quartets!

NEC Quartets To Be Fêted


New England Conservatory celebrates its Professional String Quartet Training Program with three concerts in seven days, recognizing six of the ensembles that have participated since the program’s origins, in September 11th,  2001. The three Jordan Hall concerts, also marking NEC’s 150th anniversary, take place on: April 1st – Jupiter and Parker Quartets, 7:30pm; April 4th    [continued]

Comments Off on NEC Quartets To Be Fêted

Radians Re-Assemble Ensemble for Year 19


The balance of its mixed-ensemble, mixed-repertoire model tilted decidedly pro in the first concert of Radius Ensemble’s 19th season, as the balance, as the sizeable audience at Pickman Hall @Longy @Bard discovered on Saturday evening.    [continued]

Comments Off on Radians Re-Assemble Ensemble for Year 19

David Deveau Casts Shadow Through 2017


Over his 20 years as Rockport Music Artistic Director, David Deveau has raised the chamber music festival from a beloved but provincial 4-week summer tenant to one of the best known festivals anywhere, operating 12 months in a new temple of culture, the Shalin Liu Performance Center.  He has brought artists of international stature to    [continued]

1 Comment »

Street Antiphons Commissioned by Club


As part of its Sanders Theater program (complete information below) on Sunday, April 19th, Boston Chamber Music Society will be premiering Street Antiphons by Pierre Jalbert, the second new score from the BCMS Commissioning Club in as many seasons. BCMS succeeded through the unconventional approach of asking many small contributors to pledge $300 over three    [continued]

Comments Off on Street Antiphons Commissioned by Club

Intense DSCH + Tchaikovsky @ ISG


The Borromeo String Quartet’s second pairing of Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky works came Sunday at Calderwood Hall in a remarkably compact program that disclosed concentrated, vital playing from one of the world’s best ensembles.     [continued]

Comments Off on Intense DSCH + Tchaikovsky @ ISG

Concord, Consonance and Dissonance


Everyone’s favorite local quartet dove deep into late Beethoven Sunday. While the excellent Borromeo Quartet has been reviewed in these pages many times, it remains an Important Event whenever they take on such works. The third of four programs this season of the Concord Chamber Music Society was, as usual, worth the westward trek.     [continued]

Comments Off on Concord, Consonance and Dissonance

Critics Remember 2014


As the old year wanes, many of us are subject to bouts of introspection. The several BMInt writers who are not immune to that tendency have each submitted lists of their favorite CDs and concerts of the last season. We thank them for their reflections. More are expected, so check back. Some have chosen to    [continued]


Russians at the Gardner


As programmed by the Borromeo Quartet at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s Calderwood Hall on Sunday afternoon, a pairing of quartets by Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky seemed just right. Their carefully thought out attention to every detail of articulation, phrasing, dynamics, and texture contributed to an overall sense of stylistic rightness in performances that were both probing and illuminating.     [continued]

Comments Off on Russians at the Gardner

Rockport to Harbor 33rd Chamber Music Festival


In 2013 Rockport Chamber Music Festival stretched the boundaries of chamber music with semi-staged early Baroque opera by Charpentier and staged 12th-century music drama The Play of Daniel, not to mention the very 21st-century Eviyan Trio (comprising a composer clarinetist, Romanian vocalizing violinist, and electric guitar, doing original performance-art music). But this year looks different.    [continued]

Comments Off on Rockport to Harbor 33rd Chamber Music Festival

Eclectic and Electric Musics in Monadnock Region


Electric Earth Concerts of Jaffrey and Peterborough NH will be shifting to high gear in a couple of weeks, offering a mini-festival ‘June in Jaffrey’ featuring musically various events in and around the beautiful town of Jaffrey—a stone’s throw from Mount Monadnock. Nicholas Kitchen’s solo Bach concert on June 13th is the first event in    [continued]

Comments Off on Eclectic and Electric Musics in Monadnock Region