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University of Iowa News Release


Oct. 10, 2008

Chiara String Quartet, in Hancher residency, definitely can't be contained

The University of Iowa Hancher Auditorium will present the convention-busting Chiara String Quartet at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 23, in the Congregational United Church of Christ at 30 N. Clinton St. in Iowa City.

The concert program is Brahms' String Quartet in B-flat Major, Op. 67; Bartok's String Quartet No. 6, and the String Quartet No. 3 of Erich Wolfgang Korngold.

The Chiara Quartet was on Hancher's 2008-09 schedule long before the June floods shut down the auditorium indefinitely, but when Hancher relocated its events under the banner "Can't Contain Us!" the quartet emerged as a perfect symbol for the season, because it is a chamber-music ensemble committed to playing "chamber music in any chamber."

During a Hancher-sponsored residency, the quartet will perform in a gallery, a coffeehouse, schools, a residence hall and office complexes as well as main performance on Oct. 23.

On Monday, Oct. 20, the Chiara Quartet will be at Metro High School and Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids, and the Preucil School of Music and UI Currier Hall in Iowa City.

After visiting Iowa City's Elizabeth Tate High School in the morning of Tuesday, Oct. 21, the quartet will perform at 8 p.m. in the Java House in downtown Iowa City, presenting a free informal concert that is open to the public.

And on Wednesday, Oct. 22, the quartet will visit a marketing class in the UI Arts Entrepreneurship Program, Integrated DNA Technologies and Access Iowa at the Chait Galleries.

The Juilliard-trained Chiara Quartet -- Rebecca Fischer, Julie Yoon violin; Jonah Sirota, viola; Gregory Beaver, cello -- was recently named the Blodgett Artists-in-Residence at Harvard University, and they continue an ongoing artist residency at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

In addition to performing in concert halls including Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall, Philadelphia's Kimmel Center and Harris Hall in Aspen, Colo., the Chiara devotes much of its performance season to reaching new audiences through concerts in nonclassical venues. The Quartet has performed at Caffe Vivaldi in New York's West Village, Kansas City's The Brick, Houston's Mucky Duck, and Chicago's The Hideout and many other nontraditional classical venues.

A Washington Post review observed, "Each young artist marries a nimble technique to eager-to-please intensity and unhackneyed joy."

The Chiara discography includes the Mozart and Brahms clarinet quintets with Håkan Rosengren for SMS Classical, and the world premiere recordings of Robert Sirota's "Triptych" and Gabriela Lena Frank's "Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout" for the Quartet's own New Voice Singles label. In 2007 the Chiara recorded Jefferson Friedman's Second and Third Quartets, and they are currently at work recording the complete string quartets of Brahms for SMS Classical.

"Chiara" (key-ARE-uh) is an Italian word, meaning "clear, pure, or light." More information about the Chiara Quartet can be found online at and on MySpace at

The Chiara Quartet in Iowa is supported by Daniel and Beth Holden Stence and Rockwell Collins, through the University of Iowa Foundation, and by the National Endowment for the Arts and Chamber Music America.

Tickets are $32 ($15 for UI students; $28.20 for senior citizens; $31.50, $16 for youth). Tickets may be ordered online at

The Hancher box office, also displaced by the June flood, is now open for phone or walk-up business in Suite 107 in the south building of the Lindquist Center, at the corner of Madison and Burlington Streets, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays.  Parking is available in the metered lot by the UI Main Library on Madison St., or in the Old Capitol Town Center parking ramp at the corner of Clinton and Burlington Streets.

From the local calling area, dial 319-335-1160. Long distance is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial 319-335-1158, which is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction. Information and brochures may be requested by e-mail at

A satellite box office will be set up at the church the evening of the event, with any remaining tickets for sale one hour before showtime.

For UI arts information and calendar updates visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to and click the link "Join or Leave ACR News," then follow the instructions.


STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS:; Winston Barclay, Arts Center Relations, 319-384-0073,; there is also an online press kit with a contact link at