CMA Chamber Music on Main’s upcoming season is one for the books

Enjoy a beautiful evening of music and art. Photo credit: Drew Baron / Columbia Museum of Art.

Columbia, S.C. – The critically acclaimed, intimate concert series CMA Chamber Music on Main marks its 22nd year with an extraordinary 2023–2024 season. Led by series artistic director and world-renowned pianist Andrew Armstrong, the series begins on Monday, November 13, with the return of two of its most popular artists, violinist Tessa Lark and cellist Alice Yoo, playing works by Beethoven and Arensky.

“Our partner, Andrew Armstrong, is a talented and charismatic artistic director who designs programs that surprise and delight concertgoers,” says CMA Executive Director Della Watkins. “His extensive network of world-class performers brings remarkable chamber music to the wide range of programs at the CMA.”

The second concert features Chamber Music on Main’s first wholly international group, the Barbican Quartet from Germany and England, featuring Amarins Wierdsma and Kate Maloney on violin, Christoph Slenczka on viola, and Yoanna Prodanova on cello. Following a brief survey of British composers, from 17th-century Henry Purcell to 20th-century Benjamin Britten, the Quartet joins Armstrong on piano to stomp, sing, and soar their way through Dvořák’s immortal Piano Quintet in A.

Dubbed by Armstrong as “The Kaleidescope Concert,” the third show of the season features “one of two great valveless horn players in the Western Hemisphere,” R.J. Kelley, who joins Armstrong on piano, Alexander Fiterstein on clarinet, Amy Schwartz Moretti on violin, Gabriela Diaz on viola, and Raphael Bell on cello. After each player introduces themselves and their instruments through Rachmaninov’s powerful G minor Piano Trio, all six blaze through the absolute romp that is Dohnanyi’s Sextet for clarinet, horn, strings, and piano.

For the final program of the season, Armstrong advises concertgoers to expect the unexpected. With selections from Rachmaninov and Ralph Vaughn Williams as well as a newly composed work by the series’ first-ever saxophonist, flutist, and composer, the incredibly talented Alison Shearer — daughter of the late, great civil rights photographer and photojournalist John Shearer — the season finale features Abigél Králik and Karl Stobbe on violins, Joan DerHovsepian on viola, Marguerite Cox on double bass, Ani Aznavoorian on cello, and Shearer on alto saxophone and flute.

Praised by critics for his passionate expression and dazzling technique, pianist Andrew Armstrong has delighted audiences across Asia, Europe, Latin America, Canada, and the United States, including performances at New York’s major stages including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., London’s Wigmore Hall, the Grand Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, the Rudolfinum in Prague, and Warsaw’s National Philharmonic.

Concerts in the 2023–2024 season:
• Monday, November 13, 2023
• Monday, December 11, 2023
• Monday, March 4, 2024
• Monday, April 8, 2024

Season tickets: $145 / $116 for members
Individual tickets: $46 / $39 for members / $5 for students

Happy hour and open galleries at 6:00 p.m.
Concert 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Presented by April C. Lucas and John J. Stucker. Corporate Presenting Sponsor: Bank of America Private Bank. Gold Sponsors: Dr. and Mrs. Benjamin M. Gimarc; Dr. Gail M. Morrison; Hannah and Ron Rogers; Mr. and Mrs. Joel A. Smith, III; Susan Thorpe and John Baynes; Ms. E. Katherine Wells & Mr. James F. Flanagan. Silver Sponsors: Dr. John Dawson and Marilyn Edelhoch; Ginny Grose and Pat Smith; Gordon and Leona Query; Walda C. Wildman; Rice Music House. Patrons: Dr. Alice Kasakoff Adams; Mrs. Kay Bachmann; Mary and Clinch Belser; Joseph Bruce; L. Wayne Bryan and Mimi Parrott; Christina and Emory Clark; Elaine L. Craft; Jane and Bob Davidson; Robin and John Mark Dean; Faith M. Divisek and Skip Kugler; Margaret Anne and Theodore DuBose; Dayna and Dick Elliott; Becky and Earl Ellis; Steven Ford and Alonso Cuellar; Miss Elizabeth Glazebrook; Dr. Anna S. Griswold; Lynn Hodge; Charlotte and Paul Holmes; Ann and Steve Holtschlag; Nancy Lane and Raymond Juneau; Dene King; Charles H. Lesser; Dr. David M. Lowry; Timothy J. Lyons; Sam Finklea and Charlotte McCreary; Eric McKenzie; Mr. and Mrs. Charles Nicholson; Dr. Elizabeth Joiner & Dr. Buford Norman, Jr.; Susan and Franklyn Owen; Jack and Melinda Parrish; Lynn Robertson; Ardis Savory; Carolyn Traylor and Donald Titus; Dr. Harriet G. Williams and Mr. Jerry Hagenmeier; Jean Prothro; Ed Shmunes; Gordon Smith and Doak Wolfe; Brenda and Rick Wheeler; Liz Wheeler; Frances M. Webb.

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