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Arts & Culture

New Release: Bartok By Heart


Wednesday and Thursday, the Chiara String Quartet perform at Ravinia. Their program over the two nights include all six of the quartets by Bela Bartok. The catch? They are performing them all by memory. No music! No music stands.

Music Director John Clare spoke to the four members of the Chiara String Quartet, Rebecca Fischer, violin; Jonah Sirota, viola; Hye-Yung Julie Yoon, violin; and Gregory Beaver, cello; about the performances and their new release of the quartets.

Although the work of memorizing is far more involved than just learning the pieces by printed music, the reward is substantial: through the memorization process, we are able to return Bartok’s music to the realm of the unrecorded folk music he so lovingly captured. We hope that by sharing our performances with you, Bartok’s remarkable music continues its journey from ear to ear and generation to generation just as the folk music that inspired it.

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