Henschel String Quartet at the Rectors Palace

Date created: 27.07.2015.

Renowned Munich based Henschel Quartet - violinists Christoph Henschel and Pawel Zuzanski, Monika Henschel on viola and cellist Matthias Beyer-Karlshoj - hosted an unforgettable music evening for the audience of 66th Dubrovnik Summer Festival on July 26th, in the Rector's Palace Atrium.

For the first time in Dubrovnik and for the first time in Croatia, Henschel Quartet was presented to the festival audience, by performing the String Quartet in G minor, Op. 74/3, better known as the Rider, which is one of the master works of composer Joseph Haydn.  What followed was a String Quartet no. 1 by Erwin Schulhoff , a student of Antonín Dvořák , which is not a part of the standard repertoire, although it is one of the most recognized and most successful works of this composer. Henschel Quartet, with its excellent performance successfully approached this aesthetically expressionist piece to the audience. After the break Dvořák's String Quartet no. 12 in F major was performed. Otherwise known as The American, this piece was composed by Dvořák in the summer of 1893 during his vacation in the North American town Spillville, Iowa and is infused with elements typical for Native American and African American music. For the composer those were the days of pleasure and family harmony so it is no wonder that it's particularly joyful music as the Henschel Quartet exceptionally presented. The highest artistic level and perfect musical performance by Henschel Quartet and obviously well- chosen repertoire were rewarded with tremendous applause, which called for an encore of Schulhoff Allegro giocoso alla slovacca.

The quartet’s musical journey has included many remarkable highlights.  The Henschel Quartett played at the official re-opening of the Anna-Amalia Library in Weimar (a UNESCO World Heritage site), and travelled to Brussels as a Cultural Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany.  In March 2010 the quartet was privileged to perform at the Vatican in the presence of Pope Benedict XVI.  The quartet has regularly been invited to the Royal Palace of Madrid to perform on the four Stradivari of the royal collection.  In June 2012 the Henschel Quartett was invited, as the first European quartet in twenty years, to perform Beethoven’s complete string quartets in the prestigious Suntory Hall in Tokyo.  In the same year Monika Henschel became the president of the newly-formed Association of German String Quartets, and in 2013 Christoph Henschel was appointed Honorary Professor at the University of Augsburg.

Highlights of last season and the current one include appearances in London, Amsterdam, New York (Carnegie Hall), Washington, DC (National Gallery), Yokohama and Tokyo (Geidai University).

In front of the Festival audience in the Rectors Palace Atrium they have performed compositions by Josepha Haydn, Erwin Schulhoff and Antonína Dvořák.