The Ladies Morning Musical Club will restart the club’s 132nd Season on February 4 and concluding on April 28. To have that kind of enduring legacy they must be doing a lot of things right. I’ve attended several concerts, and McGill’s venerable Pollack Hall is always close to or at capacity.

The key ingredient to the club’s ongoing success is the high calibre of the accomplished musicians that the club presents for its Sunday afternoon concerts. The audience is knowledgeable about classical music, and collectively they recognize and appreciate enlightened musicianship. I’ve yet to attend a concert without an encore.

Doric String Quartet

The Doric String Quartet will close out the season on April 28 
Photo: George Garnier

The LMMC concert series is a prestigious booking for classically trained musicians; and Montreal audiences are the beneficiaries of this solid international reputation.

Following our preview of the Fall concerts, we’ll now give you a preview of the concerts scheduled between February and April.

February 4, Javier Perianes, piano

The international career of Spanish pianist Javier Perianes has taken him to prestigious concert halls to perform with the world’s most renowned conductors and top orchestras, including the Vienna Philharmonic, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, and the orchestras of Montreal, Chicago, Boston, Cleveland, and San Francisco.

Perianes has also participated in many of Spain’s most important festivals. In 2012 he was awarded the National Music Prize by the Ministry of Culture of Spain and in 2019 was named International Classical Music Awards (ICMA) Artist of the Year. Perianes records exclusively for the Harmonia Mundi label. His diverse discography ranges from Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Schubert to Blasco de Nebra, Mompou, and Turina. His Debussy program won a Gramophone Award in 2019. In July 2021 Perianes released his latest album containing Chopin’s Sonatas Nos. 2 and 3 interspersed with the three Mazurkas Op. 63. His February 4 concert at McGill’s Pollock Hall will he his LMMC debut.

February 25, Escher String Quartet, strings and piano

Roman Rabinovich – piano; Adam Bernett-Hart – violin; Pierre Lapointe – viola; Brendan Speltz – violin and Brook Speltz – cello.

“One of the top young quartets before the public today” … “notable for its polish and tonal beauty” … “a dark ambrosial view all its own,” are just a few of the glowing accolades that have been bestowed on the Escher String Quartet. The Quartet takes its name from Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher, inspired by Escher’s method of interplay between individual components working together to form a whole. The group was founded in 2005 in New York City, where its original members were studying at the Manhattan School of Music.

The Escher Quartet has performed on five continents; including Wigmore Hall in London, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and the National Arts Centre in Ottawa at the invitation of Pinchas Zukerman.

In its hometown of New York, the ensemble serves as Season Artists of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, where it has recently performed quartet cycles of Beethoven and Zemlinsky. In 2013, the Quartet became one of the very few chamber ensembles to be awarded the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant.

The Escher Quartet has recorded the complete quartets of Zemlinsky on the Naxos label and the complete quartets of Mendelssohn on the BIS label, both sets to the highest critical acclaim. The Escher’s latest release consists of the two quartets of Ives plus the Barber String Quartet (including the famous Adagio movement) with the addition of the longer, original final movement. Tashkent-born Israeli pianist Roman Rabinovich was a winner in the 2008 Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2022, following which he was praised by the New York Times for his “uncommon sensitivity and feeling.”

March 17, Aris Quartett

Replacing the previously scheduled Pavel Hass Quartet.

April 7, Stewart Goodyear, Piano

Known for imagination, a graceful, elegant style, and exquisite technique, Canadian Stewart Goodyear is a pianist whose career spans many genres. He studied at the Royal Conservatory of Music in his native Toronto, received a Bachelor’s Degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, and completed a Master’s Degree at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, where he now lives.

Stewart Goodyear

The immensely popular and talented Stewart Goodyear will perform on April 7
Photo: Anita Zvonar

At the core of his repertory are the 32 Beethoven sonatas, recordings of which Jed Distler in Classics Today called “intelligently stylish. Swift tempos, forward sweep, linear clarity, imaginative yet never mannered inflections and genuine joy in executing the composer’s volatile dynamic markings all characterize Goodyear’s interpretations.”

In addition to his prowess as a pianist, Goodyear is also known as a skilled improviser and a composer. Recent commissions include a Piano Quintet for the Penderecki String Quartet, and a solo work for the 2022 Honens Piano Competition in Calgary. Orchid Classics has released Goodyear’s recording of his own piano sonata and his suite for piano and orchestra, Callaloo. Another CD of special interest is entitled For Glenn Gould, which combines repertory from Gould’s debut recitals in Montreal and the U.S. His recording of his own transcription of Tchaikovsky’s complete Nutcracker ballet was chosen by the New York Times as one of the best classical music recordings of 2015. This will be Stewart Goodyear’s third LMMC engagement.

April 28, Doric String Quartet

Alex Redington – violin; Hélène Clément – viola; Ying Xue – violin; John Myerscough – cello.

Formed in 1988, the Doric String Quartet ranks as one of the leading quartets of its generation. First-prize winner at the 2008 Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in Japan and second-prize winner at the Premio Paolo Borciani International String Quartet Competition in Italy. The Quartet has been heard on five continents, appears in leading concert halls throughout Europe, and is a regular visitor to Wigmore Hall in London.

The Quartet tours annually to the United States and made its Carnegie Hall debut in 2017. Since 2010 the Quartet has recorded exclusively for Chandos Records. Its 2017 release of Schubert’s Quartettsatz and G-Major Quartet was named Editor’s Choice by Gramophone magazine and nominated for a 2017 Gramophone Award. The Quartet’s ongoing commitment to Haydn has so far seen the release of the complete Op. 20, 33, 64, and 76 quartets. The Doric Quartet’s most recent release of Mozart’s Prussian Quartets (Nos. 21-23) was awarded Editor’s Choice in Gramophone, as well as being praised in BBC Music magazine for its “vivid and insightful interpretations.” 2019 saw the release of the Doric’s benchmark recording of the complete Britten quartets, a release praised in BBC Music magazine for its “extraordinary affinity” with Britten’s music. The Quartet’s violist, Hélène Clément, plays a Guissani viola from 1843, previously owned by Britten, who was himself an accomplished violist. This will be the third LMMC appearance.

All concerts take place at McGill’s Pollack Hall corner of University and Sherbrooke St West. Tickets are $60 and $25 for students under 26 years. For reservations, please call: 514-932-6796 or email: [email protected]

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