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Athenaeum announces 2008-09 chamber concert series

The Athenaeum’s nineteenth season of chamber concerts will emphasize young, edgy artists, all presented as chamber music was intended, in the intimacy of the Athenaeum’s Joan & Irwin Jacobs Music Room.

The season opens Nov. 11 with the La Catrina Quartet, a group of musicians performing new music as well as masterworks of the string quartet repertoire, and devoted to promoting Mexican and Latin American music.

On Dec. 5, the Athenaeum presents pianist Kevin Kenner, the only American to have won the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw and the Bronze Medal at the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.

The St. Lawrence String Quartet, one of the world-class chamber ensembles of its generation, will perform on Jan. 23, 2009. In 2003, the quartet was nominated for two Grammy Awards, in the categories of Best Chamber Music and Best Classical Contemporary Composition, for its recording, “Yiddishbbuk.”

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The Prima Trio, Grand Prize and Gold Medal winners of the prestigious 2007 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, will perform on Feb. 6.

Grammy nominee Paul Galbraith, who performs on March 24, has been working since the 1980s towards expanding the technical limits of his instrument, besides augmenting the quantity and quality of its repertoire. These efforts have already resulted in a series of critically acclaimed recordings of works by Bach, Haydn and Brahms, along with his own arrangements of folk tunes from various countries, all of which demonstrate the originality of his musical personality.

Eighth blackbird closes the season on April 19, promising a provocative and engaging performance. eighth blackbird, who won this year’s Grammy for Best Chamber Music Performance for strange imaginary animals, is widely lauded for its performing style and its efforts to make new music accessible to wide audiences. Tickets for all concerts are available now by calling (858) 454-5872.