The University of Chicago News Office
Feb. 18, 2002 Press Contact: Cathy Sweitzer
Director of Communications, University of Chicago Presents
(773) 834-7965

Brentano String Quartet and Poet Laureate Mark Strand to perform Feb. 22

Continuing a season highlighted with music and poetry, the Brentano Quartet will join Pulitzer prize-winning poet Mark Strand on Friday, February 22, 2002 at 8:00 p.m. in Mandel Hall. The program will feature Haydn’s Seven Last Words of Christ, one of the composer’s most profound works, with original texts by Mark Strand. A University of Chicago professor and winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Strand will read his own text based on the representation of Jesus the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, an alternate version of the life of Christ that does not appear in the New Testament. Ticket prices are $29 (student price $11, with valid ID). A free pre-concert talk with Michael Kannen and Mark Strand is available to ticket holders at 7:00 p.m. in Mandel Hall. For further information or to purchase tickets, please call (773) 702-8068, or visit us online at

The program is as follows:

Haydn Seven Last Words of Christ
     with original texts written and read by Mark Strand

     Maestoso ed Adagio

Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.

Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.
     Grave e cantabile

My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

I thirst.

It is done.

Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.

The earthquake.
     Presto e con tutta la forza


The Brentano String Quartet is comprised of violinists Mark Steinberg and Serena Canin, violist Misha Amory and cellist Nina Maria Lee. The Quartet is named after Antonie Brentano, whom many scholars believe to have been Beethoven's mysterious "Immortal Beloved," and to whom he wrote his famous love confession. The Brentano String Quartet has the distinction of being named to three major awards, winning the first Cleveland Quartet Award, the 1995 Naumburg Chamber Music Award and the 10th Annual Martin E. Segal Award. For their first appearance in Great Britain at Wigmore Hall, the Brentano was awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award for the most outstanding chamber music debut for 1997.
The Brentano String Quartet has appeared with pianist Mitsuko Uchida at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, at the Library of Congress, and at Lincoln Center, and has collaborated with Jessye Norman in her 1998 Carnegie Hall recital. In the fall of 1998, the Brentano String Quartet performed to great acclaim in various venues across Australia, including the prestigious Sydney Opera House, and was featured in a "Live From Lincoln Center" broadcast.


Mark Strand was born on Canada's Prince Edward Island in 1934 and was raised and educated in the United States and South America. His honors include the Bollingen Prize, three grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a National Institute of Arts and Letters Award, the Edgar Allen Poe Prize and a Rockefeller Foundation award, as well as fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, the MacArthur foundation and the Ingram Merrill Foundation. He has served as Poet Laureate of the United States and is a former Chancellor of The Academy of American Poets. He currently teaches at the University of Chicago in the Committee on Social Thought.


For more information about the Brentano String Quartet, please visit For more information about Mark Strand, please visit


This performance will take place at Mandel Hall, 1131 E. 57th St., on the University of Chicago campus. There is free parking nearby, and the venue is handicapped accessible. Persons with disabilities or who are in need of assistance should call (773) 702-8068 prior to the event. Further information on the University of Chicago Presents and this season's performances can be found at or by sending email to

The University of Chicago Presents receives generous support from
Regents Park by The Clinton Companies.
Last modified at 01:55 PM CST on Friday, September 12, 2003.

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