Prior to the 8 p.m. PACIFICA QUARTET performance, Cal Poly Music Dept. faculty member Dr. Craig Russell will be holding a pre-concert lecture at 7 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center Philips Recital Hall.


Recognized for its virtuosity, exuberant performance style, and often-daring repertory choices, over the past two decades the Pacifica Quartet has gained international stature as one of the finest chamber ensembles performing today.

On Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 8 p.m. in the Spanos Theatre, Cal Poly Arts proudly presents the Pacifica Quartet as part of the Cal Poly Arts Beethoven Cycle Series – a six-recital/six-ensemble premiere Cycle that will present Beethoven’s complete catalogue of string quartets in a series that spans the next two seasons.

“The Beethoven string quartets are to chamber music what the plays of Shakespeare are to drama,” explains Cal Poly Arts Director Steve Lerian.  “Cal Poly Arts is thrilled to be presenting all of these epic compositions at the Spanos Theatre in a six concert series over two seasons, performed by six different world-class ensembles – three from the U.S. and three from Europe.

“The Central Coast’s classical music-loving audience will have the opportunity to experience the entire arc of Beethoven’s life as a composer. We will hear the transition from his total mastery of the classical string quartet as developed by Haydn and Mozart and illustrated in his String Quartets Nos. 1-6, Opus 18, to the greatly expanded form and new degree of emotional sensitivity and drama of the Razumovsky quartets.

“The late Beethoven String Quartets, which include his last five quartets and the Grosse Fuge, are his last completed works as a composer.  Although less frequently performed, these works are widely considered to be among the greatest musical compositions ever written in their uncompromising intellectual complexity and their apparent rejection of the romantic pathos which pervades Beethoven’s middle period.  Seeing and hearing them performed here in this series will be an absolute treat for our audiences and the Pacifica Quartet is a fine way to start the Cycle.”

In reviewing the Pacific Quartet, the Denver Post declared, “A synthesis of chemistry, dynamism and artistic sensibility among (Pacifica’s) members made for the most meaningful interpretation of Beethoven in recent memory.”

The Spanos concert will feature Quartet in G Major, Op. 18, No. 2, “Compliments;” Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 74, “Harp;” and Quartet in C-sharp minor, Op. 131.

The Pacifica Quartet tours extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia, performing regularly in the world’s major concert halls. Named the quartet-in-residence and full-time faculty members at Indiana University’s Jacob School of Music in March 2012, the Pacifica was the quartet-in-residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2009 – 2012) and received the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance.

In addition to their touring schedule, The Pacifica Quartet serves as resident performing artist at the University of Chicago.

“They play with stupendous, breathtaking virtuosity.” (London Times)

Student and adult tickets for the performance are $36 and $45 and may be purchased in advance at the Performing Arts Center Ticket Office, Tuesday – Saturday, noon to 6 p.m, located on Grand Avenue on the Cal Poly campus.  The Ticket Office is also open as of noon on all performance days.

TICKETS: 805/756-4TIX (4849) or order online at

Sponsored by FRAME WORKS.  Supported in part by a grant from the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF) and the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information on all Cal Poly Arts events, including audio and video samples, please visit