Friday, September 20, 8.00 pm

Tickets for this concert can be purchased online or from 30 August 2024 at the Rudolfinum Ticket Centre. Tickets cannot be purchased at the Bethlehem Chapel.

Ticket prices

690 – 590 Kč


Jessie Montgomery: “Strum” for string quartetPyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: String Quartet No. 1 in D Major, Op. 11Antonín Dvořák: String Sextet in A Major, Op. 48, B. 80

At the very beginning of the concert by the Dover Quartet, many listeners might get the impression they have arrived at an American folk festival. The composition Strum by Jessie Montgomery audibly revels in its roots in the folk music of the United States. And where else should such a composition be heard than at an event dedicated to Antonín Dvořák, who wrote his most frequently performed works while living in America. His String Sextet in A major brings the programme to a conclusion, and folk music is what links it to contemporary America. Dvořák wrote his only sextet immediately after finishing his first series of Slavonic Dances, and the works are written in a very similar vein. Joining with the superb Dover Quartet for the concluding sextet are Josef Špaček on viola and Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin on cello. At the centre of this programme with echoes of folk singing is a work by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: a movement of his First String Quartet is based on a song the composer heard while visiting his sister in the Ukraine. 

Listen to “Strum” for string guartet (J. Montgomery)Play
  • Dress code: dark suit
  • Doors close: 7.55 pm
  • End of concert: 9.45 pm


Dover Quartet

Named one of the greatest string quartets of the last 100 years by BBC Music Magazine, the GRAMMY® nominated Dover Quartet has followed a “practically meteoric” (Strings) trajectory to become one of the most in-demand chamber ensembles in the world. The group’s awards include a stunning sweep of all prizes at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, grand and first prizes at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, and prizes at the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition.

Formed at the Curtis Institute of Music in 2008, when its members were just 19 years old, the Quartet draws from the musical lineage of both the Vermeer and Guarneri Quartets, but brings a youthful enthusiasm and musical conviction to the repertoire that is truly its own. The Strad recently raved that the Quartet is “already pulling away from their peers with their exceptional interpretative maturity, tonal refinement and taut ensemble.” Members of the Quartet have appeared as soloists with some of the world's finest orchestras, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic, Kansas City Symphony and BBC Concert Orchestra.

Having toured Europe several times, the quartet has already performed amongst others at London’s Wigmore Hall, at the Biennale in Paris, Beethoven-Haus Bonn, Philharmonie Cologne, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, in Regensburg, Munich, Salzburg, Geneva, Berlin, Frankfurt, Innsbruck, Brussels, at Schloss Esterházy, Kultursommer Nordhessen, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schwetzinger Festspiele, Rheingau Musik Festival, Klosterkonzerte Maulbronn and at Dresdner Musikfestspiele. The Dover Quartet performed birthday concerts for pianists Emanuel Ax and the late Leon Fleisher in New York, London, and other places. In recent seasons, invitations have taken the quartet to Wigmore Hall London, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, as well as Paris, Basel, Amsterdam, Geneva, the Philharmonie Essen, and the Schubertiade, among others. The quartet recently premiered Steven Mackey’s theatrical-musical work Memoir, alongside arx duo and actor-narrator Natalie Christa. Other recent and upcoming artist collaborations include Ray Chen and the late Peter Serkin. Highlights in the concert calendar of the next season include concerts in Schwetzingen, the Wartburg Eisenach as well as in Copenhagen and Padua.

The Dover Quartet's debut CD with the quartets KV 589 and 590 and the string quintet KV 406 by Mozart - a homage to the Guarneri Quartet's first recording - was followed by a recording of “Voice of Defiance” with quartets by Viktor Ullmann, Dmitri Shostakovich and Simon Laks. Their recording of the Schumann Quartets was released on the Azica label at the end of 2019 and was nominated for a Grammy Award. The last volume CD of Beethoven's Complete String Quartets  was released by Cedille Records in March 2023.

The Dover Quartet was a Graduate String Quartet-in-Residence at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music in Houston and received the Cleveland Award in 2015, the Lincoln Center’s Hunt Family Award and the Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2017. Since 2020, the quartet has been the Penelope P. Watkins Ensemble in Residence at the Curtis Institute of Music, alongside a residency at the Kennedy Center, amongst others.

The ensemble is named after the string quartet “Dover Beach” written by one of the most famous students of the Curtis Institute: Samuel Barber.

The Dover Quartet plays on the following instruments and proudly endorses Thomastik-Infeld strings.

• Joel Link plays a very fine Peter Guarneri of Mantua violin kindly loaned to him by Irene R. Miller through the Beare’s International Violin Society.

• Bryan Lee: Riccardo Antoniazzi, Milan, 1904

• Julianne Lee: Robert Brode, 2005

• Camden Shaw: Frank Ravatin, France, 2010

source: Konzertdirektion Andrea Hampl

Dover Quartet

Josef Špaček

Praised for his remarkable range of colours, his confident and concentrated stage presence, his virtuosity, and technical poise as well as the beauty of his tone, Josef Špaček has gradually emerged as one of the leading violinists of his generation. 

He has appeared with orchestras including the Orchestre de Paris, the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, the Bamberger Symphoniker, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, the WDR Sinfonieorchester, the Konzerthausorchester Berlin, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, SWR-Symphonieorchester, and the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra.

Highlights in the 2023/24 season include debuts with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Jakub Hrůša, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Nathalie Stutzmann, the Dutch Radio Philharmonic Orchestra with Tomáš Netopil, as well as a residency with the Residentie Orchestra The Hague with Anja Bihlmaier, and with Jun Märkl in his return to the prestigious Verbier Festival.

With cellist Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin and pianist George Xiaoyuan Fu, he completes the Trio Zimbalist.

In September 2023, Supraphon released Josef Špaček’s latest CD recording presenting orchestral and chamber works by Bohuslav Martinů: Concerto for violin, piano and orchestra, followed by Sonata No. 3 and Five short pieces.

Another remarkable CD recorded with cellist Tomáš Jamník features works for violin and cello by Janáček, Martinů, Schulhoff, and Klein, including a transcription of Janáček’s string quartet no. 1 for violin/cello duo. His previous Supraphon release is a highly praised recording of the violin concertos by Dvořák and Janáček, coupled with the Fantasy of Suk, with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Jiří Bělohlávek. The Sunday Times wrote: “The violinist’s individual, deeply considered and virtuosic account of Dvorak’s solo part is the highlight of this keenly conceived programme”, adding that “…in this repertoire, Špaček is second to none today.” It was the “Recording of the Week” of The Sunday Times, “Recording of the Month & of the Year” of MusicWeb International and it received 5* from Diapason. Other recordings to date include a recital disc with works for violin and piano by Smetana, Janáček, and Prokofiev with pianist Miroslav Sekera (Supraphon).

Josef Špaček studied with Itzhak Perlman at The Juilliard School in New York, Ida Kavafian and Jaime Laredo at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, and with Jaroslav Foltýn at the Prague Conservatory. He was laureate of the International Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels and won top prizes at the Michael Hill International Violin Competition in New Zealand, the Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition in Denmark, and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in New York. He served as concertmaster of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra for nine concert seasons until 2019 and the orchestra named him “Associate Artist” in January 2016. 

Josef Špaček performs on the ca. 1732 “LeBrun; Bouthillard” Guarneri del Gesù violin, generously on loan from lIngles & Hayday. 


Josef Špaček - viola

Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin

Greek cellist Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin is forging an unwavering artistic path, aiming to evoke powerfully stirring illusions through his music making. He regularly appears as a soloist and chamber musician throughout North America and Europe, most recently as a soloist with conductor-violinist Leonidas Kavakos and the Athens State Orchestra. Timotheos made his first major US solo appearance in 2016 with the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Robert Spano. He then gained international recognition as a prize winner at the prestigious International Paulo Cello Competition in Finland, where he was singled out by the local press for his “…great and passionate soloist style: expressive, vibrant singing lines, sparkling rhythm”, and “interesting, original personality”. 

He has also appeared as a soloist with the Helsinki Philharmonic and Susanna Mälkki showcasing the rarely performed Shostakovich 2nd Cello Concerto. Other notable solo performances include appearances with the Lahti Symphony Orchestra, the Tapiola Sinfonietta, the Israel Camerata, the NEC Philharmonia Orchestra, the Thessaloniki State Symphony Orchestra, and Symphony in C Orchestra. He is the winner of the 2015 Astral Artists National Auditions.

Timotheos is a founding member of Trio Zimbalist, a piano trio comprising Curtis Institute alumni which – through their commitment to artistic excellence – carries on the storied legacy of legendary violinist and Curtis director Efrem Zimbalist. Trio Zimbalist made their European debut in summer 2021 and continues to tour in both Europe and North America. Their first album was released with great success in January 2024 under the Curtis Studio Label.

Timotheos made his Carnegie Hall recital debut in 2019, performing cello and chamber music works by renowned contemporary composer Leonid Desyatnikov.

In 2017, he was named Artist-in-Residence at 'Performance Today', the most listened-to classical music radio program in the US. Several of his recordings were broadcast and received with great success throughout the year. In 2023, Timotheos was named Artistic Director of the Samos Young Artist Festival, a position which he still holds today.

An avid chamber musician, Timotheos has collaborated with various important musical figures such as violinists Leonidas Kavakos, Noah-Bendix Balgley, Miriam Fried, Pamela Frank, violists Roberto Diaz and Kim Kashkashian, and pianists Meng-Chieh Liu and Ignat Solzhenitsyn. He has participated at the Marlboro Music Festival, where he performed with Jonathan Biss, Joseph Lin, Samuel Rhodes, and Peter Wiley. Other festival appearances of note include Chamberfest Cleveland, Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute, Caramoor’s Evnin Rising Stars, Molyvos Festival, the Moritzburg Festival, and the Dimitria Festival. 

Timotheos received his Bachelor of Music at the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Peter Wiley and Carter Brey. He then entered a class taught by Laurence Lesser at the New England Conservatory and graduated with a Master of Music and an Artist Diploma. In addition, he was a scholarship recipient of the Onassis Foundation. 

source: Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin

Timotheos Gavriilidis-Petrin - cello

Bethlehem Chapel

The Bethlehem Chapel is one of the most important landmarks in Prague. The original building, dating from 1391 and closely associated with the reform movement of Master Jan Hus, was torn down. A modern replica was built at the same site in the 1850s based on a design by the important architect Jaroslav Fragner. At present, the Bethlehem Chapel serves as ceremony hall for the Czech Technical University. It is the site of not only graduation ceremonies for the schools students, but also various cultural and social events.