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GS5: Strings Attached

Wednesday, May 22, 2024, Canadian Mennonite University, Laudamus Auditorium 

Paul Marleyn, cello

Delve into chamber music’s rich tapestry with a selection of contemporary and 20th-century compositions. In this exceptional evening, experience the diversity of musical imagination brought to life through the hands and strings of our performers: Ethan Allers, Dimi Kreshchenskyi, Elise Lavallée, Paul Marleyn, Elation Pauls, and Karl Stobbe.

Our evening begins with Webern’s String Trio, Op. 20, a pioneering foray into modernism that delicately challenges and sets the innovative tone for the concert. The ambiance then becomes intimate with Witold Lutoslawski’s Sacher Variation for solo cello, a masterful display of the cello’s emotive capabilities. This theme of introspection is seamlessly carried through Chan Ka Nin’s Soulmate, another solo piece that delves deep into the resonance of the cello. Reintroducing the ensemble, Michael MatthewsString Sextet, written especially for this concert, weaves intricate melodies into sparse textures.  John Cage’s iconic Five for 5 instruments serves as a pivot, challenging the boundaries between music and silence, known and unknown, with its avant-garde brilliance. Ana Sokolovic’s Vez then immerses us in a rhythmic universe echoing with Slavic motifs.

The evening now introduces a unique resonance with Giovani Sollima‘s Lamentatio, where the pairing of cello with singing cellist creates a sound both mournful and transcendently beautiful. This is followed by Rhiannon Giddens‘ evocative At the Purchaser’s Option for string quartet – a modern reflection on echoes of the past. Concluding our night is the world premiere of Ilkim Tongur’String Sextet, commissioned by GroundSwell for this concert.

Join us as we traverse the fascinating landscapes of chamber music, each piece a testament to the power of strings in reaching the human spirit.

Curated by Michael Matthews

All concerts start at 7:30PM and are pay what-you-can, how-you-can. 

Join Dr. Suzu Enns,  instrumentalist, clinician and community music facilitator for a pre-concert SoundWalk, starting at 6:30PM (weather permitting).