In their role as ‘Featured Artists’, the Solem Quartet will give two prominent concerts at the Vale of Glamorgan Festival in Cardiff.
Their concerts will take place on 13 and 14 September, and will feature several works by Pēteris Vasks, as well as music by leading Welsh composers. Members of the quartet will also deliver a workshop as part of the Peter Reynolds Composer Studio.
Both concerts take place in Cardiff University Concert Hall, and will be streamed live on the Vale of Glamorgan Festival YouTube channel.
On Monday 13th September at 7:30pm, the Solems will give their first concert at the Festival on its opening night. Their programme celebrates the music of Latvian composer Pēteris Vasks in his 75th birthday year, with two of his string quartets: No. 3 and No. 2 ‘Summer Tunes’. The Festival has a long-standing relationship with Vasks, who was Composer in Residence in 2006 and featured heavily in their seasons celebrating music from the Baltic States. There will also be a pre-concert talk at 7:15pm by Welsh composer and critic Steph Power.
On Tuesday 14th September at 7:30pm, pianist Siwan Rhys joins the Solem Quartet for a concert entitled ‘Fruits of Silence’. Their programme is bookended with more music by Pēteris Vasks — opening with his Quartet No. 1 and ending with his piano quintet The Fruit of Silence — and in between will feature music by three leading Welsh composers, all of whom will be present and feature in the pre-concert talk at 7:15pm. The Solems look forward to another performance of Guto Puw’s string quartet ‘your paths overflow with plenty’, after giving its premiere at Bangor Music Festival earlier this year. They will also play Sarah Jenkins’s The Lake Isle of Innisfree, and an exclusive preview of a new String Quartet by the Festival’s Artistic Director John Metcalf, entitled Towards Silence.
Members of the quartet will also deliver a workshop on Monday 13th September for the six emerging composers who have been selected to take part in the Peter Reynolds Composer Studio, which runs throughout the week. The session will focus specifically on violin and viola technique, featuring discussions with the composers and workshopped performances of their own short works.
The 2021 Vale of Glamorgan Festival runs 11-16 September, and all the concerts will be available for free on the Festival YouTube channel.
Peteris Vasks: String Quartets
Vasks String Quartet no. 2, Summer Tunes
Vasks String Quartet no. 3
Fruits of Silence
With Siwan Rhys (piano)
Vasks String Quartet no. 1, revised version
Metcalf Preview of new quartet: Towards Silence
Puw String Quartet #1 – your paths overflow with plenty
Jenkins The Lake Isle of Innisfree
Vasks The Fruit of Silence, version for Piano Quintet