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The Amstel Quartet Brings its Innovative and Energetic Saxophone Arrangements to the Clark on August 7

For Immediate Release

July 23, 2007

Internationally renowned for their originality and technical prowess, the Amstel Quartet brings its energetic saxophone arrangements to the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute for an evening of innovative chamber music on Tuesday, August 7 at 8 pm. Tickets are $15 ($12 members). For reservations, call 413-458-0524.

For nearly a decade the four young saxophonists who make up the Amstel Quartet have built an international reputation for riveting performances, filled with infectious emotion and dynamism. The players first met in 1997 while touring with the Dutch National Youth Orchestra and decided to form an ensemble where they could test the boundaries of the conventional saxophone repertoire of the time. Since then, the Amstel Quartet has released four CDs, performed throughout Europe, Japan, and the United States, and earned numerous awards and accolades, including the 2006 Concert Artists Guild Management and Audience Awards at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Named after the Amstel River, the historical birthplace of the city of Amsterdam, the Amstel Quartet is grounded in the traditions of chamber music yet continuously takes on new and evolving creative challenges. Its repertoire incorporates classical works for saxophone quartet, contemporary compositions and interdisciplinary collaborations with dance, musical theatre, and video. From the mystery of Bach’s Second Cello Suite in D to Michael Nyman’s music for the film The Piano, the four saxophonists unleash a palpable collective energy and gain fans with each performance.

The quartet’s performance at the Clark will feature two works by Dutch artists, Jan P. Sweelinck’s Chromatic Fantasy and Merlijn Twaalfhoven’s 1 Gram of Time (2005). Also included will be Michael Torke’s July (1995); Alexander Glazunov’s Quartet in B-flat, Op. 109 (1932); J.S. Bach’s Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 659; and Concerto for Saxophone Quartet (1995) by Phillip Glass.

This concert is organized in collaboration with NL: A Season of Dutch Arts in the Berkshires, a summer-long cultural exchange that showcases vibrant arts from the Netherlands and is the most extensive presentation of Dutch arts and culture ever to be held in the United States.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, MA. The galleries are open daily from 10 am to 5 pm in July and August (closed Mondays September through June). Admission June 1 through October 31 is $12.50 for adults, free for children 18 and under, members, and students with valid ID. Admission is free November through May. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit www.clarkart.edu.

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