Four great artists with a passion for chamber music have formed an exciting new quartet that is bound to become an audience favorite. Anna Polonsky (piano), Jaime Laredo (violin), Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt (viola), and Sharon Robinson (cello) are all known for wonderfully expressive playing, so ESPRESSIVO! was the perfect name for this new quartet of piano and strings. HVCMC is delighted to have our Artistic Directors, Jaime and Sharon, kick off the season with their new quartet and the following program:
• Rebecca Clarke: Morpheus for viola and piano
• Gabriel Fauré: Piano Quartet No. 1 in C minor, Op. 15
• Johannes Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 2 in A major, Op. 26
Anna Polonsky, piano
Jaime Laredo, violin
Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt, viola
Sharon Robinson, cello
For decades, violinist Jaime Laredo and cellist Sharon Robinson, together with their piano trio partner the late Joseph Kalichstein, were considered “chamber music royalty” (Washington Post), a term that applies equally to their ESPRESSIVO! partners: the stellar violist Milena Pájaro-van de Stadt (formerly of the Dover Quartet) and award-winning pianist Anna Polonsky, one of chamber music’s most sought-after partners. The handful of captivating concerts that they have already played together have been full of the virtuosity, musicality, and joy that make for a truly memorable chamber music experience. We know that ESPRESSIVO! will captivate you with exceptional works that we don’t hear often. And there aren’t likely to be more compelling interpreters than the members of ESPRESSIVO!
Anna Polonsky (piano) is widely in demand as a soloist and chamber musician. She has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. Major projects include participating in the European Broadcasting Union’s recording of all Mozart’s keyboard sonatas, and a solo recital at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium inaugurating the Emerson Quartet’s Perspectives Series. At the age of 7, she made her solo piano debut at the Special Central Music School in Moscow. She emigrated to the United States in 1990. She earned her master’s degree from the Juilliard School.
Jaime Laredo (violin) has excelled for decades in the roles of soloist, conductor, recitalist, pedagogue and chamber musician. Since his orchestral debut at the age of 11 with the San Francisco Symphony, he has won the admiration and respect of audiences, critics and fellow musicians with passionate and polished performances. Laredo has recorded nearly 100 discs, including a Grammy Award-winning disc of Brahms Piano Quartets with Emanuel Ax, Isaac Stern and Yo-Yo Ma. Laredo’s stewardship of the New York String Orchestra Seminar at Carnegie Hall and the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis are educational pillars of the musical community.
Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt (viola) has established herself as one of the most sought-after violists of her generation. She has performed as orchestra soloist, in recitals and chamber-music concerts throughout the United States, Latin America, Europe and Asia, including an acclaimed 2011 debut recital at London’s Wigmore Hall. She was the founding violist of the Dover Quartet and played in the group from 2008 to 2022. At that time, the Dover Quartet was the winner of multiple awards at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition and 2010 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition.
Sharon Robinson (cello) is recognized worldwide as a consummate artist and one of the most outstanding musicians of our time. She divides her time between teaching and performing, serving as co-artistic director to several prestigious chamber series across the United States. She also stablished the Cleveland Chapter of Music for Food. Highly sought after for her dynamic master classes, Robinson brings insight to her teaching from the combination of her lifetime experiences as a member of the Houston Symphony Orchestra, Duke University’s Ciompi String Quartet and the Kalichstein‐Laredo‐Robinson Trio, plus countless solo performances.