Doubles: Songs of Peace and Freedom
Doubles, Jonathan Berger's fourth string quartet, recalls songs of peace, freedom, and resistance that were influential in the composer's youth. Some of the references are readily identifiable, others obscured. The title refers to the seventeenth-century practice of pairing a short piece with an obscured, embellished version of itself, which is the formal structure of the work.The St. Lawrence String Quartet will be joined by folk artists, Marsha Genensky and Joanna Cazden, who will sing the songs of the civil rights, anti-war, anti-facism, free-speech, and labor movements that are alluded to in Doubles.
This event is part of The Ethics of Democracy series.
The ST. LAWRENCE STRING QUARTET players are: Geoff Nuttall (violin), Owen Dalby (violin), Lesley Robertson (viola), and Christopher Costanza (cello). Established in 1989, the St. Lawrence String Quartet earned international recognition within a few years, winning both the Banff Quartet Competition and the Young Concert Artists audition in 1992. The group has since developed an undisputed reputation as a truly world class chamber ensemble. Called “witty, buoyant, and wickedly attentive (The Gazette, Montreal), with a “peerless” sense of ensemble (Financial Times, London), the quartet is celebrated for its “smoldering intensity” (Washington Post), and “flexibility, dramatic fire and… hint of rock 'n' roll energy” (LA Times). SLSQ performs internationally and has served as Ensemble in Residence at Stanford University since 1998. For more information about the SLSQ's community outreach programs at Stanford, click here.
MARSHA GENENSKY was a founding member of the internationally renowned vocal quartet, Anonymous 4. Between 1986 and 2015, she and her A4 colleagues appeared in concert in almost every state in the US and in several dozen other countries, and made more than twenty recordings of medieval chant and polyphony, new music, and American roots music. In addition to conducting historical language pronunciation research for A4’s medieval projects, she handled the music research and acted as director for A4’s American projects, American Angels (which reached No. 1 and spent over 75 weeks on Billboard’s Classical chart), Gloryland, and 1865, and acted as the de facto executive director for the group. She also spent a year as a guest assistant professor in the music department at Stanford University, and has otherwise become known in the Bay Area and beyond for her performance courses and workshops on medieval music and on Anglo-American sacred and secular song.
JOANNA CAZDEN toured nationally as a singer/songwriter on the front lines of the feminist, environmental, and human rights movements of the 1970s-80s, releasing six solo albums and appearing with artists such as Malvina Reynolds, Pete Seeger, Theodore Bikel, and Holly Near. Finding a second career in speech pathology and artists' health advocacy, she has been senior voice therapist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center since 2001; her preventive guide Everyday Voice CareNorthwest Passage. "Combines political awareness with a rare sense of optimism and hope"—Boston RealPaper. "Highly valued in the early years of the women's music movement."—Karlene Faith, A History of Olivia Records.