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Mixed Company is written by Saint Paul Sunday staff, giving you a behind-the-scenes look at the show and the classical music they love. We welcome your online comments.

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October 7, 2005

Beautiful Belcea

We love welcoming old friends to the studio but we also spend a lot of time looking for new artists and ensembles to introduce to you. The New York Times, MPR colleagues, and blogs are all sources for us. I canít quite remember when I first heard about Belcea, but it was probably the fact that they were named quartet in residence at Londonís Wigmore Hall that grabbed my attention.

Iíve only been to Wigmore once in my life, but it lived up to any romantic vision you might have about a great chamber music experience. The location (a beautiful residential section of London) and the building are remarkable, but itís the hallís acoustics which have attracted chamber ensembles since its opening in 1901. Itís a place where musicians want to play, and that creates an artistic pulse in a hall that is different than most. Because of this, Wigmore has become synonymous with chamber musicÖand when a quartet is named in residence there, a good producer makes the call to find out more.

We were lucky that they could find time for a visit to St. Paul on one of their first U.S. tours and they came with much more music than we could fit into an hour so we created a program that allows you to hear a variety of composers and periods. So let us knowÖwhen Belcea returns, what would you like to hear?

Posted by Mary Lee at October 7, 2005 11:52 AM