Afinat Records announces the limited advance release of American Quartets: Antonín Dvořák & Wynton Marsalis [AR1701] on April 4, 2017, by the acclaimed Euclid Quartet. The new recording contains the beloved “American” String Quartet No. 12 in F Major, Op. 96 (1893) by Antonín Dvořák, and “At the Octoroon Balls” String Quartet No. 1 (1995) by Pulitzer Prize and GRAMMY® Award winning American trumpeter, composer, founder and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, Wynton Marsalis.
The new album will be released in CD format only at a special benefit concert by the Euclid Quartet on Tuesday, April 4, 2017, at 7 pm in the Louise E. Addicott & Yatish J. Joshi Performance Hall at IU South Bend. The quartet has held the prestigious chamber music residency at IU South Bend’s Ernestine M. Raclin School of the Arts since 2007. Proceeds from the concert, as well as from advance sales of the CD will be donated by the quartet to help build the IUSB Raclin School of the Arts String Scholarship Fund at the IU Foundation. The new recording will be released by Afinat Records for worldwide commercial distribution (both CD and digital download formats) on October 6, 2017.
Jameson Cooper, first violinist of the Euclid Quartet, says, “This recording project was designed to help us build the strings program at IU South Bend. We need sufficient scholarships to be able to attract fine students to our wonderful school and make it financially possible for students of all economic backgrounds. We felt this project was the best way to raise awareness of our program and its needs. All of our profits from CD sales will be donated to the string scholarship fund.”
Regarding the music on the album, Cooper says “We first started playing the Marsalis when we received an award from the National Endowment for the Arts to create an educational program about the different ethnic and cultural influences in American music. The Marsalis was a great choice to represent African-American music. It fuses jazz, blues, fiddling and other popular styles with classical music. The resulting work is music of incredible energy, charm, beauty and humor. It became one of our signature works! The Dvořák is one of the most beloved pieces for string quartet, written in America’s heartland in rural Iowa. Like the Marsalis, the music is an ‘American’ melting pot of numerous styles and influences.”
The Euclid Quartet recorded American Quartets in 2016 at IU South Bend’s Addicott-Joshi Performance Hall. The album was produced thanks to the generosity of the ensemble’s close friends and patrons, Dr. Alfred J. Guillaume, Jr. and Melanie Smith Guillaume, to whom the album is dedicated. Advance copies of the CD will be sold for $16.99, available exclusively at Euclid Quartet performances on tour, in local South Bend sales outlets, and direct from Afinat Records’ online store at www.afinat.com. American Quartets will be released commercially on October 6, 2017, available through major music retailers, including Amazon and iTunes.
ABOUT THE EUCLID QUARTET
Praised for their “knockout performance” by The Los Angeles Times, the Euclid Quartet has been recognized as one of the finest American quartets of its generation, known for dynamic performances filled with personality and vibrant color. Its diverse members hail originally from the United States, England, China and Venezuela. The quartet has captivated audiences and critics alike from Carnegie Hall to school classrooms, radio and television broadcasts across the United States. The Euclid Quartet’s recordings of the complete Bártok string quartet cycle on the Artek label received rave reviews from international publications, including Gramophone magazine, who wrote “Their artistry brings fresh perspectives to cornerstones of the quartet repertoire.”
Career highlights include being the first American quartet to be awarded a top prize at the prestigious Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in Japan, as well as top prizes in the Hugo Kauder, Yellow Springs, and Carmel competitions in the United States.
The Euclid Quartet is dedicated to championing contemporary music by living composers. The ensemble has performed world premieres at prestigious venues such as the Aspen Music Festival and the Library of Congress, and was awarded an American Masterpieces grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its innovative showcasing of contemporary American string quartets.
Since 2007, the Euclid Quartet has held the prestigious quartet residency at Indiana University South Bend. The quartet has also given master classes at universities and colleges across the nation.