Rutherford Chamber Consort presents its final spring concert

Published 7:02 pm Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Rutherford Chamber Consort will present its final spring concert this Sunday, June 4, 3 p.m. at Landrum Presbyterian Church in Landrum. The Consort is a professional ensemble dedicated to bringing great chamber music to South Carolina. The program is entirely Beethoven, celebrating several gems from the master’s pen.

The opening work will “Piano Trio, op. 70, No. 1 in D major,” subtitled the “Ghost,” a name given the piece by Beethoven’s student, Carl Czreny. The slow movement’s eerie atmosphere reminded Czerny of the ghost of Hamlet’s father. Beethoven was in fact sketching out ideas for an opera based on Shakespeare’s Macbeth. The themes of the trio’s “Largo” were meant for a scene of the three witches. The sweeping and exuberant grandeur of the two outer movements stand in stark contrast to the intense black hole of the middle movement. The trio was written at the height of Beethoven’s heroic middle period, composed soon after the completion of the Symphonies No. 5 and 6.

The final piece on the concert is “Piano Sonata No. 21 in C major, op. 53,” known as the “Waldstein.” The work is dedicated to Count Waldstein, who years earlier had helped the young Beethoven come to Vienna to study with Haydn. In 1803 Beethoven had taken delivery of a new piano from Erard with a number of new features: an additional half-octave range F’-C””, pedals rather than knee levers to raise the dampers, and increased sonority in the bass. The “Waldstein” is the first sonata to have pedal markings, and they are more frequent and rapid than possible with knee levers.

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The featured musicians are the Consort’s Artistic Director and violinist Sharon Lawrence; Brenda Leonard, cello; and Returning to Landrum is Concert Pianist, Christopher Tavernier. These musicians come from throughout the Carolinas and have a great passion and love for chamber music. This concert is free and open to the public. For more information about the ensemble, visit or call 828-245-3282.

Article submitted by Bob Tavernier