Takács Quartet Plays John Adams’ Absolute Jest

July 1, 2022 | 6:30 pm America/Denver

Music Director Peter Oundjian opens the 2022 Festival season with special guests: Boulder’s own Takács Quartet. This Grammy Award-winning quartet joins the orchestra for John Adams’ Absolute Jest, which samples, twists, and builds upon Beethoven’s themes, in particular his late string quartets; Adams has referred to his Jest as “Beethoven that has been passed through a hall of mirrors.” Dvořák’s iconic Symphony No. 9, “From the New World,” was written in the “new world” of America but teeming with Bohemian folk influence as well. Composer Carlos Simon’s Fate Now Conquers nods to a notebook entry written by Beethoven and explores “the unpredictable ways of fate” and the uncertainties of life.

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Conductor
Peter Oundjian

Guest Artists
Takács Quartet, artists-in-residence

Program
Carlos Simon, Fate Now Conquers (2020)
John Adams, Absolute Jest (2012)

Antonín Dvořák, Symphony No. 9, Op. 95 (“From the New World”)

Learn More

  • Enjoy a 1-minute preview of this concert by the Takács Quartet
  • “At his core, [John Adams] is a master musician, a composer who has managed to live up to the standards set by the greats before him yet carve out a fresh, distinctively American and arguably timeless musical niche of his own.” Read more about 2022 composer-in-residence John Adams in this profile
  • Get to know Boulder’s Takács Quartet and learn what it’s like to perform in a professional string quartet in this interview between Takács and Music Director Peter Oundjian 
  • Hear composer John Adams’ perspective on his own Absolute Jest
  • NPR talks to John Adams about the way he enjoys taking “little harmonic fragments, like fractals, from Beethoven and putting them through the black box of [his] own musical personality”
  • Composer Carlos Simon’s Fate Now Conquers nods to a notebook entry written by Beethoven quoting The Iliad; read Simon’s statement about this piece of music 
  • “Sometimes it takes an outsider to point out what’s great about a culture. That’s exactly what Czech composer Antonin Dvořák’s was when he came to the U.S. at the end of the 19th century, an immigrant thrown into a new world and new sounds. Out of that experience, he wrote a symphony for America: Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9, subtitled ‘From the New World,’ has become one of the world’s most beloved orchestral works. It also produced a melody that is a hymn and an anthem to what American music can be.” Read more at NPR

Upcoming Concerts

June 30-August 7, 2022

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