Arts & Culture » Theater Critic's Choice

Hawthorne String Quartet

by

comment

Between 1941 and 1945 more than 140,000 people were transported by the Nazis to Theresienstadt, Czechoslovakia. Nazi propaganda led the world to believe that the vast camp was "the city presented to the Jews by the fuhrer," but its occupants knew better. Among those incarcerated were some of Europe's best and brightest young composers and performers, prized pupils of Janacek, Schoenberg, and others. Their creativity in the face of adversity was an astonishing display of spiritual resistance, and the body of work the doomed composers left behind--piano sonatas, chamber music, and vocal and choral pieces written in fairly accessible idioms--hints at the kind of contribution they might have made had they survived the holocaust. A number of those compositions deserve to enter into the 20th-century repertoire, argues the Hawthorne Quartet (all members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra), which will introduce works by Czech-born Erwin Schulhoff, Hans Krasa (who studied with Zemlinsky), and Gideon Klein. Violist Mark Ludwig will also present a slide show on the creative community at Theresienstadt. Monday, 8 PM, Bennett Hall, Ravinia Festival, Green Bay and Lake Cook Rds., Highland Park; 728-4642.

Add a comment