Jefferson Friedman: Quartets Chiara String Quartet & Matmos

Release Date: April 26, 2011 on New Amsterdam Records

Jefferson Friedman: Quartets will be released on New Amsterdam Records, performed by the Chiara String Quartet (Rebecca Fischer and Julie Yoon, violins; Jonah Sirota, viola; Gregory Beaver, cello) and Matmos (Drew Daniel and Martin Schmidt), on April 26, 2011. Included on the album are Friedman’s String Quartets Nos. 2 (1999) and 3 (2005), plus two remixes of the quartets by electronica duo Matmos. Grammy-winning engineer Judith Sherman produced the recording.

On Friday, May 6, at 7:30pm, the Chiara Quartet, Matmos, and Friedman will celebrate the release of the new album with a live performance at (Le) Poisson Rouge (158 Bleecker Street, NYC), in a shared bill with NOW Ensemble launching their New Amsterdam album, Awake (also released on April 26).

William Brittelle, a co-founder of New Amsterdam Records, said, “These discs are a continuation of New Amsterdam’s commitment to robust new classical chamber music. Awake is a spirited follow-up to the NOW Ensemble’s eponymous New Amsterdam debut, which launched the label in 2008 and gained national recognition for our community-oriented start-up. This is the first release on New Amsterdam for the Chiara Quartet and Matmos, who bring precise passion to Jefferson Friedman’srigorous and moving quartets.”

Friedman’s String Quartet Nos. 2 and 3 were commissioned by the Chiara, and are the result of a near fifteen-year friendship with the composer. They met in 1996 at the Aspen Music Festival, where the Chiara premiered Friedman’s first string quartet. They crossed paths again as graduate students at Juilliard and had a casual conversation that resulted in the composition of String Quartet No. 2 in 1999. In 2005, Friedman’s third string quartet was commissioned by the Brooklyn Friends of Chamber Music on behalf of the Chiara. The world premiere took place that spring at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall (coincidentally on April 26, the same date as this album is released).

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