The Permian Basin String Quartet returns to Alpine for a concert at 6 p.m. on October 2 at St. James Episcopal Church in Alpine. The program will feature Beethoven’s Quartet No. 15 in A minor, Opus 132 and Claude Debussy’s Quartet in G minor, Opus 10.
“We are very excited about our upcoming performance in Alpine,” said the group’s spokesperson and cellist, Amy Huzjak. This concert is the third in a series that will have the quartet traveling from Midland and Odessa to Alpine, Albuquerque and Abilene.
Originally from Colorado, Huzjak received her master’s in music performance from the University of Maryland in 2011. She is currently a member of the Midland Symphony Orchestra. Second violinist Alex Norris has played with many chamber groups and is currently a music teacher in the Odessa Midland area. He is principal second violin with the Midland Symphony. Violist Melissa Madura teaches at the University of Texas Permian Basin. She has played with symphonies and chamber music groups in Wisconsin and Texas and has been part of the Midland Symphony for the past ten years. Her husband, John Madura, is the quartet’s first violinist. A violinist since his early childhood, Madura is currently concert master of the Midland Symphony.
The Quartet No. 15 was written in 1825. Beethoven was completely deaf by this time in his life and had just recovered from a grave illness. NPR has described the quartet as “transcendent,” and it is said that T.S. Eliot wrote The Four Quartets in response to hearing it.
If Beethoven’s quartet came at the end of his life, Debussy’s 1893 quartet in G – his only string quartet – was a beginning. French composer-conductor Pierre Boulez describes this piece as one that has freed chamber music from “rigid structure, frozen rhetoric and rigid aesthetics.”
This concert is a full evening of music. Donations are welcome to defray travel expenses, and a reception with the artists follows the performance. St. James is located at Ave. A and North 6th St. in Alpine.
The Permian Basin String Quartet, from left: Alex Norris, John Madura, Melissa Madura, Amy Huzjak. (Photo courtesy the Permian Basin String Quartet)