YELLOW SPRINGS — Chamber Music in Yellow Springs is holding its annual competition — the 33rd in a series that brings chamber groups to the area, delighting audiences and forwarding the groups’ careers.
The competition will take place beginning 4 p.m. Sunday, April 29 in the First Presbyterian Church, 314 Xenia Ave. This year’s contestants, The Julius Quartet and Thalea String Quartet, both describe themselves as “passionate” musicians dedicated to education and outreach.
The Julius Quartet (Hyun Jeong Helen Lee, first violin; David Do, second violin; John Batchelder, viola; and Byron Hogan, cello) has been hailed as “the captivating young string quartet” by The Bennington Banner and is making itself known in the chamber music world.
Formed in fall 2012, the group was recently appointed as the Peak Fellowship Ensemble-in-Residence at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University, and previously served as the Graduate Quartet-in-Residence at the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University (NJ), where they worked intensely with the celebrated Shanghai Quartet. Recognized for its high level of artistry, the quartet strives not only to explore the extensive quartet repertoire, but also to present its unique voice within the music. The Julius Quartet gave its Carnegie Hall debut in March 2016, and has performed in numerous venues and summer festivals in the U.S. and Canada.
The Thalea String Quartet, formed in 2014, is dedicated to bringing timeless music to audiences from all walks of life. Its members (Christopher Whitley, violin; Kumiko Sakamoto, violin; Luis Bellorín, viola; and Titilayo Ayangade, a Cincinnati native, cello) aim to connect with audiences on a musical, emotional and personal level, from first-time listeners to string quartet aficionados. They are devoted to building a new and diverse audience for chamber music through innovative programming and community engagement, winning praise for “vibrant performance” and “sincere expressivity” (SF Classical Voice).
The quartet prides itself on the diversity of its collaborations, from performing Mendelssohn’s Octet in its original manuscript form with the award-winning Borromeo Quartet, to performing works for voice and string quartet with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw, to collaborating with San Francisco-based dance theatre company the Joe Goode Performance Group at the Yerba Buena Center. The quartet has performed in Italy, France, the U.S. and Canada and was appointed as the first quartet-in-residence at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music from 2015-17.
Tickets for the concert are $25 for adults,or $7 for full-time students with ID. Further information can be found at www.cmys.org or by phoning 937-374-8800. Tickets may also be available for purchase at the door.