Entertainment and Music Lifestyle

ACMS Presents First Installment of Summer RADiance at Grey Eagle

By Hannah Van Vlack

The Asheville Chamber Music Series (ACMS), in collaboration with the Chamber Music Society of the Carolinas (CMSC), presents an event at The Grey Eagle Music Hall on Thursday, July 11, at 7:30 p.m. The concert will feature the Opal String Quartet and the Jasper String Quartet, who have put together a program of Dvořák, Bloch, Wiancko, Mendelssohn and more. This is the first-ever performance of Summer RADiance, a new event designed to bring chamber music to this informal, laid-back venue in the River Arts District.

(Top) Opal String Quartet; (Bottom) Jasper String Quartet

Bill Smyth, the incoming president of the ACMS, is enthusiastic about this casual summer performance. “Come and enjoy some food from the taqueria and have a drink while you listen to two string quartets at the same time,” Smyth says. “They will perform separately and also give us an unusual opportunity to enjoy the Mendelssohn Octet for Strings.”

The Jasper Quartet, based in Philadelphia, PA, is an award-winning, nationally recognized group comprised of J Freivogel and Karen Kim on violin, Andrew Gonzalez on viola and Rachel Henderson Freivogel on cello. The quartet aims to connect with audiences beyond the concert hall, and its thought-provoking programming connects the music of underrepresented and living composers to the canonical repertoire. The quartet celebrates its 18th season in 2024 and will be touring throughout Western North Carolina. “We at CMS Carolinas are delighted to co-present with Asheville Chamber Music Series this energetic, collaborative, and fun chamber music takeover of the Grey Eagle,” says J Freivogel.

The Opal Quartet, formed in Asheville in 2006, is the only local group of its kind, performing masterworks and collaborating with composers to premiere new ones. Comprised of Mariya Potapova and Karen Pommerich on violin, Kara Poorbaugh on viola and Franklin Keel on cello, the quartet performs at many kinds of venues and provides educational outreach to local middle and high schools.

“We are big fans of the Jasper Quartet and are thrilled and honored to perform with a quartet of their depth and caliber,” says Poorbaugh.

The Grey Eagle is located at 185 Clingman Avenue in Asheville’s River Arts District. The Asheville Chamber Music Series can be contacted at 828. 575.7427 or support@ashevillechambermusic.org. For more information on this event and to purchase tickets, visit AshevilleChamberMusic.org.

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