Oliver Heath (violin)
Sara Wolstenholme (violin)
Gary Pomeroy (viola)
Chris Murray (cello)
Beethoven Quartet in D Op.18/3
Bartók Quartet No.1 in A minor Sz.40
Dvořák Quartet in G Op.106
Pre-concert talk at 5.30pm in the Brockway Room:
Poetic Inspirations: Robert Hugill looks at the three classic quartets being performed in the evening’s concert and how their composers were inspired by earlier composers and by emotional events in their own lives.
The dynamic and charismatic Heath Quartet are fast earning a reputation as one of the most exciting British chamber ensembles of the moment. In May 2013 they became the first ensemble in 15 years to win the prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society’s Young Artists Award. Formed in 2002 at the Royal Northern College of Music they were selected for representation by YCAT, were awarded a Borletti-Buitoni Special Ensemble Scholarship and in 2012 won Ensemble Prize at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
Their next two recordings to follow in 2016 on the Harmonia Mundi label
featuring Tchaikovsky quartets (studio recording) and Bartók quartets (recorded live at the Wigmore Hall). Future highlights also include a return to the Kilkenny Festival performing the late string quartets of Mozart and to the Ryedale Festival for concerts based on T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets, a project with the pianist Hannes Minnaar at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam playing a French programme as well as numerous appearances at summer festivals in the United Kingdom and beyond.
Notable performances of the previous seasons have included a complete Beethoven Cycle at the Kilkenny Arts Festival, the world premiere of a John Tavener piece at the BBC Proms, concerts at the Beethovenfest Bonn, Mecklenburgh-Vorpommern Festival, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and their debuts at the Musée d’Orsay and Louvre Auditorium in Paris. Regular visitors to the United States the quartet also recently made their debut in New York at both Carnegie Hall and the Lincoln Centre, and continue their residence at Middlebury College, Vermont. In the UK they have also performed at the Barbican, Bridgewater Hall, Sage Gateshead, Perth Concert Hall and Queen’s Hall Edinburgh. And in Europe they have appeared at the Kissingen Winterzauber and Schwetzinger Festivals as well as deSingel Arts Centre in Antwerp, Vara Konserthus in Sweden, Berlin Konzerthaus, Esterházy Palace, and the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna.
The Heath Quartet regularly enjoy working with a host of talented collaborators including Anna Caterina Antonacci, James Baillieu, Ian Bostridge, Adrian Brendel, Michael Collins, Colin Currie, Stephen Hough, Sunwook Kim, Richard Lester, Joanna MacGregor, Aleksandar Madzar, Anthony Marwood, Mark Padmore, Lawrence Power, Carolyn Sampson, Jamie Walton and the Tokyo Quartet, plus even venturing into the world of jazz with a ‘Wigmore Late’ concert together with saxophonist Trish Clowes and pianist Gwilym Simcock.
Strong exponents of contemporary music, the Quartet have also worked with several leading composers including Hans Abrahamsen, Louis Andriessen, Brett Dean, Anthony Gilbert, Sofia Gubaidulina, Steven Mackey and John Musto. They took part in the European première of Steve Mackey’s ‘Gaggle and Flock’ for string octet, the world première of John Musto’s ‘Another Place’ with Carolyn Sampson at the Wigmore Hall as well as receiving unanimous critical acclaim for their performance of Ligeti’s Quartet No.2 and Thomas Ades’ ‘Arcadiana’ for The Park Lane Group at the Purcell Room.
The Heath Quartet members are Professors of Chamber Music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, individually holding instrumental teaching posts in the faculty.