The Alliance Players, a chamber music group of prominent soloists and former players of the world’s leading ensembles, opens a new series of concerts at New York University’s Maison Française (16 Washington Mews at University Place) on Wednesday, December 10, at 7:30 p.m. with the performance of Olivier Messiaen’s monumental work, Quartet for the End of Time, celebrating the centennial of the composer’s birth. Each concert in the series will focus on the works and influences of a single composer on his or her birthday. Tickets for the concert are $20, general public; and $10 for NYU students with a current ID. For further information and to make a reservation, call 212.998.8750.
Quartet for the End of Time was written while the composer was interned at a German prison camp and scored for the musicians he met there. This intensely programmatic piece highlights Messiaen’s religious mysticism. Its title is derived from the Book of Revelation where an angel announces “that time shall be no longer.”
Members of The Alliance Players are: Nurit Pacht, violin; Todd Palmer, clarinet; Darrett Adkins, cello; and Priya Mayadas, piano.
Pacht enjoys a unique career as a soloist and chamber musician performing both standard works and exploring the avant-garde. She has appeared and toured with such orchestras as the Houston Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Pacific Symphony, Israeli Chamber Orchestra, and the Georges Enesco Philharmonic.
Palmer has appeared with many symphony and chamber orchestras including those of Houston, Atlanta, St. Paul, Cincinnati, BBC Scotland, and Montréal. Since winning the Young Concert Artist International Auditions, he has appeared as recitalist and lecturer at major performing arts centers and universities throughout the country.
Adkins has given many important first performances of new works including the first New York performance and recording of Luciano Berio’s Sequenza XIV, and the world premieres of Andrew Mead’s Cello Concerto with the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble and of Jeffrey Mumford’s concerto (dedicated to Adkins.
Mayadas, who at the age of nine became one of the youngest winners of a BMI Student Composer Award for her string quartet, has given solo concerts throughout the U.S., including at the Ravinia Festival Rising Stars Series, Caramoor Festival, Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, and Jordan Hall.