As a long-time partner of both deSingel and Jonathan Harvey, the Arditti Quartet are essential guests at this music@venture festival. The Fourth String Quartet by Giacinto Scelsi (1905-1988) is, in a single short movement, the architectural pinnacle of his oeuvre: each player's every string becomes an instrument in its own right, so that the string quartet seems like an orchestra of sixteen individual strings. John Cage (1912-1992) wrote his 'String quartet in four parts in 1950; a simple work which, like the 'Sonatas and Interludes', refers to the Indian notion of nine permanent emotions, and also to the significance given to seasons, creation, preservation, destruction and rest in India.
Jonathan Harvey's second quartet was commissioned by the Arditti Quartet and is now being performed in this country for the first time since its first-ever performance at the 1989 Ars Musica Festival. Harvey's String Trio was recently performed for the first time, to great acclaim, at the 2005 Witten Festival.