Cuarteto Rústico to perform in Romney

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Cuarteto Rústico will be performing at The Bottling Works, in Romney, Nov. 10 at 7:30 p.m

Touted by the New York Concert Review as having, “…a focused sound at all dynamic levels, beautiful phrasing, a perfect balance among the instruments.” Cuarteto Rústico is a string quartet comprised of artists with Latin American roots. Originally from Chile, Colombia, Puerto Rico and New York, Cuarteto Rústico’s primary mission is to promote the origins, history and culture of the Americas through music.

The Hampshire County Arts Council will present Cuarteto Rústico in a concert at The Bottling Works, 426 E. Main St. in Romney, Saturday, Nov. 10 at 7:30 p.m. Preceding the concert the Arts Council will welcome members and prospective members to a social gathering and discussion of ideas for future Arts Council activities.

Rústico (rustic) refers to a return to the most basic elements of nature in painting, poetry, letters, culinary arts, fashion, philosophy and science, as well as music. It reflects a simple way of living, the absence of time, rush or haste. In the visual arts, the rústico style is most often represented in landscape painting of the simple elements that exist in the countryside. The painter purposely leaves a noticeable brush mark in the canvas to re-create a rustic, uneven look. In music, rústico elements appear in various time periods in the works of many composers; Vivaldi, Haydn, Bartók, Gorecki and Ginastera all use elements of folklore such as common songs and folk rhythms in their works. Cuarteto Rústico is a string quartet that enjoys emphasizing the rustic/rústico elements especially when they are encountered in classical and Latin American music.

The quartet is made up of two violinists, Ariadna Buonviri and Juan Jaramillo, violist Cassandra Stephenson, and cellist Jorge Espinoza.  Cuarteto Rústico’s programs include classical and Latin American works originally written or arranged for string quartet. A current project is to research and perform lesser known Latin American works originally written for string quartet.  While works by composers from the Americas and Europe are a substantial part of Cuarteto Rústico’s repertoire, folk music and popular music from the Americas is at the heart of their programs.

“Many string quartets strive for a consistently blended, homogeneous sound, and when a homophonic texture called for it, we heard such a sound from Cuarteto Rústico. But what I liked most about the quartet’s playing was that each instrument retained its own color, making crystal clear the polyphonic web which was present in so much to tonight’s music.” – Harry Saltzman, New York Concert Review

Ariadna Buonviri, violin, began studying the violin at the age of three. A native of Bogotá, Colombia, she made her debut at the age of 17 as a soloist with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Bogotá and Orquesta Sinfónica de Colombia. Ariadna attended college in the United States on full scholarships at Texas Christian University (B.M.) and Southern Methodist University (M.M.). An avid chamber musician, Ariadna has performed with the Opus Nine Ensemble, Quartetto Alma, American Century Music, Mira Ensemble and Aura String Quintet, among others. She is also Associate Principal Second Violin in the Maryland Symphony Orchestra. In addition to performing, Ariadna enjoys teaching and has a private violin studio in Virginia.

Juan Jaramillo, violin, originally from Venezuela, has become one of the most sought-after freelance Pittsburgh violinists. He currently plays with professional ensembles in the region including the Pittsburgh Opera, Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, and the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, where he is the principal second violin. Juan holds an Artist Diploma Degree from Duquesne University under the instruction of Mr. Sidney Harth. He earned a master’s degree from Penn State University and a bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University. Juan has played with many premier musical ensembles including the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, New World Symphony, Sarasota Orchestra and Opera. He has also participated in several summer festivals including Des Moines Metro Opera, San Miguel de Allende, Deep Creek and Sunflower Music Festival. Juan enjoys teaching and actively participates in community outreach for the arts.

Cassandra Stephenson, viola, is a visiting professor for a núcleo in Acarigua, Venezuela, part of El Sistema. A native of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., she began her studies on piano and violin, later switching to viola. She holds doctoral and master’s degrees from the University of Maryland and graduated summa cum laude from Ithaca College. Her doctoral dissertation, titled “Music for the Viola from Latin America and Spain: Canción y Baile,” highlights viola works from México, Venezuela, Spain, Argentina and Brazil. Cassandra has appeared in recitals throughout the United States, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Spain, Venezuela, and the Czech Republic. She attended Tanglewood, the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival (Italy), the National Orchestral Institute and the Blas Traditional Music Festival (Ireland). In addition to performing in the Washington, D.C. metro area, Cassandra maintains a studio in College Park.

Jorge Espinoza, cello, freelances in the Washington, DC area, performing concertos, recitals and with orchestras including the National Symphony. A prizewinner of international and national awards, Jorge has performed in his native land, Chile, and throughout South America, the United States, Europe and Mexico. Jorge holds two Graduate Performance Diplomas in Cello and Chamber Music from Peabody Conservatory, where he taught the undergraduate and graduate cello studio as an assistant teacher. He was awarded the Piatigorsky Full Scholarship to study with Stephen Kates among others. He graduated with honors from Universidad Católica de Chile and received his master’s degree in music on full scholarship from Carnegie Mellon. In addition to teaching privately, he coaches and presents master classes and workshops in the United States and abroad, including at the Third International Seminar Portuguesa-Acarigua, Venezuela, part of El Sistema.

Admission to the concert is $14 ($12 for HCAC members and under 17 free.) Advance tickets may be purchased online at http://www.HampshireArts.org/ or at the Hampshire County Visitor Center in Taggart Hall, 91 S. High St., Thursday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This concert is sponsored by Augusta Animal Hospital and FNB Romney and presented with financial assistance from the WV Division of Culture and History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the WV Commission on the Arts.

The Hampshire County Arts Council welcomes persons with disabilities at all its activities. To request accessibility services to participate, please contact 304-703-1350 or performances@hampshirearts.org in advance and we will do our best to accommodate. WV Relay Operator for information on performances:  711-496-8002.

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