Now in its fourth year, Spektral Quartet and the University of Chicago Department of Music present the Chamber Music Intensive on July 13-16, in partnership with the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts. Titled THE ROMANTICS, the 2017 session probes the music of the late Romantic period, inviting participants to more closely examine the inspirations behind some of the pinnacles of the chamber music repertoire. We will consider music on an international stage, with Brahms at his most contemplative, Dvorak after his sojourn to America, Russians Borodin and Tchaikovsky flourishing, and the French school of Fauré and Debussy in full flower. Central to the discussion at this year’s CMI will be questions these composers wrestled with in their writing, such as what role national identity plays in composition–and how one might depart from the legacy of Beethoven.
The Chamber Music Intensive is an annual festival for committed amateurs and professional-track, college-age students looking for an immersive chamber music experience in a both inviting and rigorous environment. Coached daily by members of the Spektral Quartet and UChicago chamber music director Daniel Pesca (piano), participants assemble and polish one movement of a major work over the course of four full days, culminating in a performance at the CMI’s conclusion. Effective and efficient rehearsal techniques are taught with a hands-on approach by the faculty, and participants have masterclass opportunities with guest artists which in previous years included international recording and performing artist Kim Kashkashian, and former Vermeer Quartet violinist Shmuel Ashkenasi. The CMI faculty is pleased to welcome one of the eminent chamber musicians in the world, Guarneri Quartet violinist Arnold Steinhardt as the guest artist for 2017.
In addition to expanding musicians’ skill and agency, the CMI aims to engender a love for chamber music. Guest lectures circling the festival’s theme, social events like sight-reading parties, and group outings like picnics at Grant Park Orchestra concerts are essential elements of the festival experience.