October 11, 2013

Tertulia Presents the Momenta Quartet at Antique Garage


Pictured (l-r): ASCAP’s Michael Spudic, Tertulia Founder and Artistic Director Julia Villagra and Momenta Quartet members Emilie-Anne Gendron, Stephanie Griffin, Adda Kridler and Michael Haas; two of the string quartet members proudly display their copies of Eric Nathan’s “Multitude Solitude”

“A social gathering with literary or artistic overtones,” is one of the many short dictionary definitions of the Spanish-rooted term tertúliaTertulia also happens to be a fitting name for a recently formed chamber music series enlivening the New York chamber music scene. And just as the definition of tertúlia would have it, the series offers a very casual, yet highly artistic, presentation of music for string quartet, all at a quaint and unassuming Turkish/Mediterranean restaurant located in the heart of Manhattan’s SoHo District. But it was the rich unfolding of superb and magnificent music throughout the course of the evening, skillfully performed with choice added commentary by the Momenta Quartet, which fully manifested the true artistic spirit of tertulia.

In conjunction with the solid performances of staple works for string quartet by Beethoven (“Harp” Quartet, Op. 74) and Brahms (Op. 51), the evening began on a more contemporary footing, with a work by Eric Nathan, who is currently residing in Italy as the recipient of an American Academy Rome Prize fellowship. Nathan’s work “Multitude Solitude” was originally commissioned by Momenta and premiered in June at the Chelsea Music Festival.

In the words of Tertulia Founder and Artistic Director Julia Villagra, a major goal is to provide “a new type of concert, which blends the casual with the classical in a chamber music series tailored to young audiences committed to concert-going and revelry.”

For more information about Villagra’s innovative approach to presenting chamber music at a variety of social and casual culinary settings around New York City, click here.