21st Music@Menlo Chamber Music festival: Beethoven Unfolding

by Contributed Content on July 20, 2023

David Finckel and Wu Han, founding Artistic Directors of the Music@Menlo Chamber Music Festival and Institute, are overseeing the 21st season with the theme Beethoven Unfolding.

Music@Menlo is presenting six mainstage concert programs, six Beethoven Quartet Cycle performances, six Inside the Quartets lecture-demonstrations led by David Finckel, three full- evening Encounter lectures, and a host of free events including master classes and performances by the students of the Chamber Music Institute.

In this festival, the mighty cycle of Beethoven’s sixteen string quartets is intertwined with one of Music@Menlo’s signature Unfolding of Music festivals, which move chronologically through the history of chamber music. Audiences will experience the development of chamber music in parallel with the evolution of Beethoven’s quartets, performed in order of composition by a stellar ensemble familiar to Music@Menlo audiences: the Calidore String Quartet.

Continuing through August 5, the festival presents over 50 events on Music@Menlo’s three stages in Atherton, including performances by many of the world’s most renowned artists and ensembles. Over the course of twenty-three days, the Bay Area festival presents wide-ranging musical and educational offerings including:

  • Six main-stage Concert Programs, featuring works that offer audiences opportunities to explore, savor, and be immersed in the festival’s theme
  • Six Beethoven Quartet Cycle Performances, present Beethoven’s complete string quartets in the order of composition performed by the Calidore String Quartet in Menlo School’s intimate Stent Family Hall.
  • Six Inside the Quartets lecture-demonstration led by Co-Artistic Director David Finckel precede each of the Beethoven Quartet Cycle Performances, preparing audiences for what is to come.
  • Three Encounters—the festival’s signature series of multimedia symposia presented by the world’s leading musicologists, historians, composers, and musical experts—offer audiences immersive journeys through Beethoven’s life, music, and legacy, as well as the history of the string quartet.
  • Two Overture Concerts that showcase the collaboration between world-renowned, seasoned festival artists and up-and-coming International Program musicians
  • Thirteen free afternoon performances by the gifted young artists of Music@Menlo’s Chamber Music Institute
  • Café Conversations—a unique forum for discussions on topics related to music and the arts—led by select festival artists and guests to showcase their wide-ranging expertise and imagination and to provide further insights into their remarkable careers and musical experiences
  • A stellar lineup of master classes led by renowned festival artists, also free and open to the publicThese programs, combined with world-class performances by today’s most prominent chamber artists, underscore Music@Menlo’s standing as a leader in innovation and excellence and as one of the world’s preeminent music festivals.

Get details and information about free livestreams online.

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