Johannes Brahms, Piano Quartet in A Major

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Another joyous experience for me, the opportunity to sit with the intimacy of extraordinary musicians (Anthony Marwood, violin; DJ Cheek, viola; Javier Iglesias Martin, cello; Ellen Hwangbo, piano) in a focused rehearsal. What they were working toward became increasingly clear as I sat, pushing pencil around, seeking a just response to the call.

The notion gained clarity as I listened to Brahms’ solid sound: an indomitable shape anchoring the center, colors surging outward from it.

Brahms pushes sound, hued threads yearning for a kind of more… threatening to fly off, but never doing so. Range is stretched to an aching point.

That fine line the four musicians walk: reaching for every inch of emotive potency, without becoming histrionic. Holding center in the the rushing air of sound.

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