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SUNDAY, SEP 05 2010, 08:00 PM

> Information on the Moving Sounds Festival 2010



Georg Friedrich Haas (performed by the JACK Quartet) - string quartet #3 (in the dark)

The JACK Quartet
Comprising violinists Christopher Otto and Ari Streisfeld, violist John Pickford Richards, and cellist Kevin McFarland, the JACK Quartet is focused on the commissioning and performance of new works, leading them to work closely with composers such as Helmut Lachenmann, György Kurtág, Matthias Pintscher, Toshio Hosokawa, Beat Furrer, Caleb Burhans, and Aaron Cassidy. In addition to working with composers and performers, the JACK Quartet seeks to broaden and diversify the potential audience for new music through educational presentations designed for a variety of ages, backgrounds, and levels of musical experience. The JACK Quartet is breaking new ground with "viscerally exciting performances" (New York Times) of "explosive virtuosity" (Boston Globe).

"The JACK Quartet, in terrific performances, proved that the quaint old string quartet, stretched to its limits, remains vital and entertaining."  Tom Huizenga, Washington Post (Read full article on:  www.jackquartet.com/press.html) (Photo of Jack Quartet by Justin Bernhaut)

Austrian spectral composer Georg Friedrich Haas (* Graz, 1953) has been teaching counterpoint, contemporary composition techniques, analysis, and introduction to microtonal music at the Musikhochschule in Graz since 1978, first as university lecturer, later as professor. In 1997, he took a sabbatical to be able to dedicate himself completely to composing. Since 2005 Haas has taught composition classes at the Conservatory of Music of the City of Basel Music Academy.

It is the remarkable multifacetedness that makes Haas’ music so fascinating. His works are filled with a dramaturgy of sound that reveals itself to the listener very directly, and above all nonverbally. They attest to a penetration of profane life with what can only be referred to as a mystical power of sound, a unification of the pleasant and the rough, the exuberant and the ugly, in a world of sound where dissonance represents the measure of all things rather than consonance. Haas is convinced that “the various musical traditions are not looking for conformity with the proportions of the partial tone series, but rather are trying to depart from it.” It’s not about union, but dissonance, he says. According to Haas, abstract chord develops its own independent quality, says Haas, and therein lies the compositional conclusion (Lisa Farthofer, www.musicaustria.at).

Works by Haas were featured in the Moving Sounds Festival 2009, and the composer and his oeuvre were also part of the Spring 2009 ACFNY-Composer Series. Photo of Georg Friedrich Haas by Universal Edition AG.

Related article: “Disconcerting Perfection: Georg Friedrich Haas”, by Bernhard Guenther, Transforum 4