I got off the plane, ICN to SFO, and stepped right into our first program rehearsals- the Haydn Lark Quartet. String Quartets are terribly difficult to put together, as one could spend years trying to match and blend four people to sound like one instrument. A few things out of a million that one has to think about in a string quartet are matching and blending bow strokes, vibrato and sounds, and intonation. Many of my closest friends(as well as my amazing teacher) are in professional quartets and watching them work so hard has always been inspiring. I love the string quartet repertoire, and was excited to work on a few quartets this summer.
The Haydn Lark is so exposed that we knew that we were going to have to work very hard to get it into shape for the concerts. We had about two and a half days before our first concert, and we were also rehearsing concert program two at the same time because that program would be immediately following the second Haydn concert. It was definitely a challenge, but in a way it was very exciting to see and hear how things were changing rapidly with each rehearsal and each coaching. Things were changing up to the dress rehearsals where David Finckel and Wu Han came to hear us and offer up advice on how to play in a particular acoustic and made last minute suggestions.
Now for all the pictures:)
Being silly with the quartet backstage!
The second program that I was playing was Shostakovich’s Eighth String Quartet. I was in quartet mode, having just finished the Haydn; however I was just starting to get used to playing with my quartet and now was having to start all over with another quartet! The dynamics between the two groups were so different, and the music couldn’t be any more contrasting in style. But I think in the end, we pulled of a great emotional performance!