Metro Weekly

Spotlight: Shriver Hall Concert Series

Baltimore organization presents one digital world premiere per month

trifonov, concert, shriver hall
Trifonov — Photo: Dario Acosta

Several of the most preeminent chamber musicians will perform as part of Baltimore’s Shriver Hall Concert Series this spring. And for the most part, they’ll do so just as originally planned, way back in pre-pandemic times — with the obvious exception that all concerts will be presented for viewing virtually and not live in the series’ namesake venue, located on the main campus of Johns Hopkins University.

“We have made every effort to honor our commitments and retain the engagements we had planned for the 2020-21 season,” says the series’ Executive Director Catherine Cochran in an official release. “And our exceptional artists have rallied in extraordinary ways, coming together in superb performance spaces on two continents to capture their concert recordings so we can all share the ‘front row.'”

The organization will present one digital world premiere recording per month through May, with the Baroque ensemble Quicksilver kicking things off Sunday, Jan. 31, with “Violini a due: A European Journey,” a program exploring sublime and dramatic works spanning the 17th Century and recorded at New York’s DiMenna Center.

The acclaimed Grammy-winning Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov is up next with a solo recital featuring works by Szymanowski, Debussy, and Brahms recorded at New York’s 92nd Street Y and premiering digitally on Sunday, Feb. 21.

That will be followed on Sunday, March 14, with rising star cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan accompanied by pianist Armine Grigoryan for a recital, recorded in their native Armenia, offering a mix of Beethoven, Schumann, and Franck, plus one work apiece by Armenian composers Eduard Bagdasarian and Alexander Grigori Arutiunian.

jennifer koh, shriver hall
Jennifer Koh — Photo: Juergen Frank

Famed violinist Jennifer Koh will premiere Sunday, April 11, a virtual concert focused on the Alone Together project she initiated at the start of the pandemic, commissioning “micro-works” for solo violin — some also incorporating electronic enhancement — from a range of contemporary composers.

Finally, the Calidore String Quartet will conclude the spring series on Sunday, May 2, with performances of string quartets by Dvořák and Schubert plus the concert centerpiece, Hannah Lash’s new String Quartet No. 1. This concert, recorded in a private residence in New York, is co-presented by Southern California’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts.

All premieres start at 5:30 p.m. Tickets, offering on-demand viewing for one week after the premiere, plus access to a post-concert Q&A with the artists, are $15 per concert, or $50 for a five-concert Spring Digital Subscription.

A $165 Premium Spring Digital Subscription provides all the above plus access to exclusive content including a performance by British pianist Paul Lewis and a discussion about the pioneering Black composer Florence B. Price. Visit www.shriverconcerts.org.

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