Rolston String Quartet & David Shifrin, clarinet

50th Anniversary Chamber Music Season

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

7:30 PM Harris Concert Hall

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“an electrifying
performance”
— Strings Magazine

Winner Prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award &
Banff International String Quartet Competition

1987 Avery Fisher Career Grant
2000 Avery Fisher Prize Winner 

Continues to Receive Acclaim
for their Musical Excellence

With their debut recording, “Souvenirs” recently named BBC Music Magazine ‘recording of the year’, Canada’s Rolston String Quartet continues to receive acclamation and recognition for their musical excellence.

“... chimed the most resonantly with the ideals of perfect quartet playing.”

— Calgary Herald

 

"The Rolston String Quartet performed with a maturity and cohesion rivaling the best string quartets in the world." 

— Musical Toronto

“They have achieved an elite status among the continent’s finest string quartets."

— Toronto Concert Reviews 

A Legend of the Clarinet

One of only two wind players to have been awarded the Avery Fisher Prize since the award’s inception in 1974, David Shifrin is in constant demand as an orchestral soloist, recitalist, and chamber music collaborator.

He has performed with such distinguished ensembles and artists as the Guarneri, Tokyo, Emerson, Orion, Dover, and Miro String Quartets, trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis, pianists Emanuel Ax, Andre Previn, and André Watts.

“...it's perfect in every respect....The best thing about it is David Shifrin....He musters the full spectrum of colors possible for a clarinet, from sine-wave purity to hairy, rough-edged humanity." 
— Auxiliary Input

 

Music Program
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Clarinet Quintet, K. 581 (1789)
Jörg Widmann, String Quartet No, 3, “Hunting Quartet” (2003)
Johannes Brahms, Clarinet Quintet in B Minor, Op. 115 (1891)

 

Media
Click here to listen to the Rolston String Quartet and David Shifrin perform the third movement from Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet. More audio and video recordings can be found here: https://www.samnyc.us/artist.php?id=rsq&aview=dpk

About the Artists

Rolston String Quartet

Winner Prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award & 
Banff International String Quartet Competition   


With their debut recording, “Souvenirs” recently named BBC Music Magazine ‘recording of the year’, Canada’s Rolston String Quartet continues to receive acclamation and recognition for their musical excellence. As the 2018 recipient and first international ensemble chosen for the prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award from Chamber Music America, their accolades and awards precede them. In 2016, a monumental year, they won First Prize at the 12th Banff International String Quartet Competition, Grand Prize at the 31st Chamber Music Yellow Springs Competition, and Astral’s National Auditions.
 
Recent highlights include debut performances at Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, The Freer Gallery, and Chamber Music Houston, two major Canadian tours under the Prairie Debut and Debut Atlantic touring networks, and three European tours with dates in Leipzig, Berlin, Lucerne, Heidelberg, Barcelona, and Graz among others. Their 2019-20 season includes concerts at UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music, Texas Performing Arts, Chamber Music Northwest, and Calgary Pro Musica; the chamber music societies of Detroit, Fort Worth, Kansas City, Philadelphia, and Vancouver; and the Louvre Museum. As Süddeutsche Zeitung states, “they showed such delicacy, slender elasticity, impeccable intonation, and such eminent sense of tonal balance…This is a new bright star on the truly not empty string quartet sky of our day.”
 
Notable collaborations include performances with renowned artists Janina Fialkowska, Gary Hoffman, Nobuko Imai, Miguel da Silva, and David Shifrin, as well as the St. Lawrence, and Dover Quartets. The quartet are associated artists at the Queen Elizabeth Music Chapel, and completed a two-year term as the Yale School of Music’s fellowship quartet-in-residence in spring 2019. Previously, they were the graduate quartet-in-residence at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. Keeping in the teaching tradition, they have taught at the Yale School of Music, University of Toronto, and the Bowdoin International Music Festival among others. Primary mentors include the Brentano Quartet, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, and Kenneth Goldsmith, and the quartet has received additional guidance from the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Miguel da Silva, and Alastair Tait.
 
The Rolston String Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity's Chamber Music Residency. They take their name from Canadian violinist Thomas Rolston, founder and long-time director of the Music and Sound Programs at the Banff Centre. The original members are all graduates of The Glenn Gould School (GGS), and it was at the GGS that they founded their passion for chamber music and, under the guidance of Barry Shiffman, focused their artistic growth and ensemble playing. In addition, Ms. Lee, was an alumna of The Rebanks Family Fellowship and International Performance Residency Program at the GGS.

Luri Lee plays a Carlo Tononi violin, generously on loan from Shauna Rolston Shaw. The Rolston String Quartet performs on the Eugène Ysaÿe quartet of instruments. The set was made by Samuel Zygmuntowicz, and is on generous loan from the El Pasito Association. The Rolston String Quartet is endorsed by Jargar Strings of Denmark.


David Shifrin

1987 Avery Fisher Career Grant
2000 Avery Fisher Prize Winner 


Winner of both the Avery Fisher Career Grant (1987) and the Avery Fisher Prize (2000), David Shifrin is in constant demand as an orchestral soloist, recitalist, chamber music collaborator and educator.

Mr. Shifrin has appeared with the Philadelphia and Minnesota Orchestras and the Dallas, Seattle, Houston, Milwaukee, Detroit, Fort Worth, Hawaii and Phoenix symphonies among many others in the US; and internationally with orchestras in Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Japan, Korea and Taiwan. He has also received critical acclaim as a recitalist, appearing at such venues as Alice Tully Hall, Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall and the 92nd Street Y in New York City, as well as at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. A much sought after chamber musician, he has collaborated with such distinguished ensembles and artists as the Guarneri, Tokyo, Emerson, Orion, Dover and Miro String Quartets, trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis, and pianists Emanuel Ax, Andre Previn and André Watts.

An artist member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center since 1989, David Shifrin served as its Artistic Director from 1992 to 2004. He has toured extensively throughout the US with CMSLC and hosted and performed in several national television broadcasts on PBS’s Live From Lincoln Center. He concluded his tenure with Chamber Music Northwest in Portland, Oregon in summer 2020 after having been the festival’s Artistic Director since 1981. He is currently also the Artistic Director of the Phoenix Chamber Music Festival.

In addition, he has served as principal clarinetist with the Cleveland Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra (under Stokowski), the Honolulu and Dallas and New Haven symphonies, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the New York Chamber Symphony.

David Shifrin joined the faculty at the Yale School of Music in 1987 and since 2008 has been Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Yale and Yale's annual concert series at Carnegie Hall. In January 2022, he was named the Samuel S. Sanford Professor in the Practice of Clarinet. He has also served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, University of Southern California, University of Michigan, Cleveland Institute of Music and the University of Hawaii.

Mr. Shifrin has been instrumental in broadening the repertoire for clarinet and orchestra by commissioning and championing the works of 20th and 21st century American composers including John Adams, Joan Tower, Stephen Albert, Bruce Adolphe, Ezra Laderman, Lalo Schifrin, David Schiff, John Corigliano, Bright Sheng, Ellen Zwilich, Alvin Singleton, Hannah Lash, Martin Bresnick, Aaron Jay Kernis, Valerie Coleman, Richard Danielpour and Peter Schickele.

Mr. Shifrin's recordings on Delos, DGG, Angel/EMI, Arabesque, BMG, SONY, and CRI have consistently garnered praise and awards. He has received three Grammy nominations and his recording of the Mozart Clarinet Concerto with the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, performed in its original version on a specially built elongated clarinet, was named Record of the Year by Stereo Review. Recent releases include the Beethoven, Bruch and Brahms Clarinet Trios with cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han on the ArtistLed label and a recording for Delos of works by Carl Nielsen, which includes the first recording of the Nielsen Clarinet Concerto arranged for chamber orchestra. In 2018, Delos released a recording of three clarinet quintets which were written for Mr. Shifrin by Peter Schickele, Richard Danielpour and Aaron J. Kernis with the Miro, Dover and Jasper Quartets respectively, as well as a second volume of clarinet quintets featuring David Schiff’s arrangement of Duke Ellington pieces. In early 2021, the Musica Solis label will release a recording of original music and several newly arranged works for clarinet by Francis Poulenc.

In addition to the Avery Fisher Prize, David Shifrin is the recipient of a Solo Recitalists' Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and the 2016 Concert Artist Guild Virtuoso Award. He received an Honorary Membership by the International Clarinet Society in recognition of lifetime achievement and at the outset of his career, he won prizes at both the Munich and the Geneva International Competitions. He is also the recipient of Distinguished Alumni Awards from the Interlochen Center for the Arts and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara and a Cultural Leadership Citation from Yale University. In January 2018 he received the Richard J. Bogomolny National Service Award at the Chamber Music America Conference, an award which recognizes an individual or entity who has provided historic service to the small ensemble music field.

Mr. Shifrin performs on a Backun “Lumiere” cocobolo wood clarinet made by Morrie Backun in Vancouver, Canada and uses Légère Reeds exclusively.