by Daniel Hathaway
When the pandemic kicked the Bennewitz Quartet’s performance off the Cleveland Chamber Music Society calendar in November, the presenter and the ensemble arrived at a clever alternative to simply cancelling or postponing the event.
The musicians agreed to record a full concert in Prague exclusively for CCMS. That video is available for free beginning today on the “Safe With Sound” page of the Society’s website. In addition to luminous performances of works by Haydn, Schulhoff, and Beethoven, the recording includes insightful questions from Safe With Sound artistic director Eric Charnofsky and astute responses by second violinist Štěpán Ježek.
Ježek greets viewers at the beginning from the chamber music hall of the Prague Spring Festival, before joining his colleagues Jakub Fišer (first violin), Jiří Pinkas (viola), and Štěpán Doležal (cello) in Haydn’s Quartet in G, Op. 17/5. That delightful work, largely dominated by the loquacious first violin, immediately introduces the special skills of the players: graceful accents, chains of subtleties, and perfect ensemble even in tricky rhythmic situations. [Read on…]