Mark your calendars, because on February 27th at 12:30pm, Swarthmore’s weekly Lunch Hour Concerts are returning to Parrish Hall. A welcome addition to any Monday, the Lunch Hour Concert series provides a casual and welcoming atmosphere for the Swarthmore community to listen to music together. The concerts take place in Parrish Parlor East, and the sounds of the musicians invite students, faculty, and staff walking through Parrish to pause for a moment and enjoy an intimate live performance. Whether you stay for the whole concert, or just drop by on your way to class, it’s a great way to get some inspiration and take a little break. The concerts take place every Monday at 12:30pm in Parrish Parlor East.
The first performance on Monday, February 27th, will feature Jiebing Chen and Udi Bar-David, presented by ARTolerance. Internationally acclaimed, Jiebing Chen has been called one of the foremost erhu virtuosos in the world, a master of both traditional Chinese music and contemporary repertoire. She began performing at the age of six and was recognized as a child prodigy. Since then, she has won many competitions, performed as a soloist across the world, and recorded an album, Tabula Rasa, which was nominated for a Grammy. Udi Bar-David is the ARTolerance Artistic Director and Philadelphia Orchestra Cellist, known for his mastery of the cello across musical genres. He has performed around the world as a soloist and chamber musician. Bar-David’s album Beyond Borders explores the cello’s sound with inspiration from both the music of the Middle East and American Spirituals. He aims to spread messages of hope and co-existence with his work. They will be performing two Chinese musical landmarks, Butterfly Lovers Concerto and Galloping Horse; traveling to the Middle East with Longa Farahfaza and Hora Mamtera; and ending with a classic, Thais' Meditation.
The second Lunch Hour Concert takes place on Monday, March 13th - right after spring break - and will feature one of America’s leading chamber ensembles, the Jasper String Quartet. Hailed as “sonically delightful and expressively compelling,” (The Strand), The Jasper String Quartet is a winner of Chamber Music America’s prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award, and their album Unbound was named one of the 25 Best Classical Recordings of 2017 by The New York Times. The Quartet will be performing Osvaldo Golijov’s Yiddishbbuk, Reena Esmail’s Ragamala, and Ludwig van Beethoven’s Quartet in A Minor, Op. 132.
The quartet is made up of impressively accomplished musicians. J Freivogel (violin) attended Oberlin College and Conservatory and is the recipient of numerous awards in both chamber music and solo performance. Grammy award winner Karen Kim (violin) attended the New England Conservatory and is hailed for her commitment to both chamber music and contemporary music. Andrew Gonzalez (viola) performs as both a chamber musician and a soloist, and recently graduated from the Juilliard School. Rachel Henderson Freivogel (cello) is an Artist-in-Residence at Temple University’s Center for Gifted Young Musicians, summer faculty at St. Paul Chamber Music Institute, Credo and Brevard Music Center, and works with Swarthmore students.
With spectacular players and a range of music from around the world, these first two Lunch Hour Concerts are not to be missed. The rest of the semester's programming will feature talented Swarthmore student soloists, composers, and chamber groups. Drop by Parrish Parlor East on February 27th, March 13th, and every following Monday to experience amazing music in a casual and accessible setting.