Momenta Festival VIIJune 14, 15, 16, & 17, 2022
Four concerts each curated by a different quartet member
“[the Momenta Festival] has become one of the most amazingly eclectic, never mind herculean feats attempted by any chamber ensemble in this city…” – New York Music Daily
Momenta Quartet presents its annual Momenta Festival June 14-17, 2022. All four concerts will be at the Broadway Presbyterian Church (601 W 114th St. New York, NY), and admission is free.
The seventh edition of the festival features four diverse chamber music programs each curated by a different member of the quartet. With programs that blend the old and new, the “intriguing programming” (The New York Times) and “striking originality” (I Care If You Listen) of the Momenta Festival have been acclaimed by critics and fans alike.
The festival opens with the world premiere of David Glaser’s String Quartet No. 5, written for Momenta in memory of Mario Davidovsky, alongside Beethoven’s groundbreaking “Serioso” quartet. Guest artists David Byrd-Marrow, horn and Nana Shi, piano join the quartet on June 15 for a whimsical work, In Memory of Perky Pat, and Brahms’ monumental horn trio. A string quartet by the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov is featured on June 16, paired with works by Americans Elizabeth Brown and Shawn Jaeger. A world premiere by Hilliard Greene highlights the final evening of the festival, celebrating Juneteenth and the release of Momenta Quartet’s album of works by Alvin Singleton.
“We founded this festival in 2015 as an artistic outlet for each of our individual musical interests,” says Momenta violist Stephanie Griffin. “I continue to be surprised to discover new pieces and composers that my Momenta colleagues introduce me to through this festival.”
Admission to all concerts is free. Programs are subject to change.
Momenta Quartet’s 2022 Momenta Festival
All concerts start at 7:30 pm (doors at 7 pm)at the Broadway Presbyterian Church (601 W 114th St.) in Manhattan
Free admission, no tickets/reservations needed
JUNE 14: Visionary Sounds – curated by Emilie-Anne Gendron, violin
Momenta presents the world premiere of David Glaser’s String Quartet No. 5 (2022), written for Momenta in memory of Mario Davidovsky, alongside Davidovsky’s intricate Synchronisms No. 9 (1988) for violin and recorded electronic sounds. This exploratory evening also includes the late great Ursula Mamlok’s elegant “Two Bagatelles” (1961), rediscovered toward the end of the composer’s life in a hidden sketchbook; Mexican microtonal trailblazer Julián Carrillo’s final String Quartet No. 13 (1964); and Beethoven’s groundbreaking “Serioso” quartet.
Program:Ursula Mamlok: Two Bagatelles (1961) for string quartetMario DavidovskySynchronisms No. 9 (1988) for violin and recorded electronic soundsDavid Glaser: String Quartet No. 5, in memoriam Mario Davidovsky (2022)*Julián Carrillo: String Quartet No. 13 (1964)Ludwig van Beethoven: String Quartet No. 11 in f minor, Op. 95 “Serioso” (1810)
*world premiere, written for Momenta
JUNE 15: Horn Fifths – curated by Alex Shiozaki, violin
Guest artists: David Byrd-Marrow, horn and Nana Shi, piano
David Byrd-Marrow and Nana Shi join Momenta on this program exploring the horn and its harmonies. Having premiered Hirofumi Mogi’s In Memory of Perky Pat (2021) earlier this year, Momenta is reprising that whimsical piece for string quartet and french horn. With his Horn Trio, Johannes Brahms creates a sound world filled with overtones and consonance, and Grażyna Bacewicz turns that world upside down with quintal harmonies in the angular Piano Quintet No. 2 (1965).
Program:Hirofumi MogiIn Memory of Perky Pat (2021) for string quartet and hornJohannes Brahms: Trio for Violin, Horn, and Piano in E-flat Major, Op. 40 (1865)Grażyna Bacewicz: Piano Quintet No. 2 (1965)
JUNE 16: Distant Songs – curated by Michael Haas, cello
In the words of Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov, “Music is, above all, a chant, a song the world sings about itself.” Momenta explores the influence of song and the human voice on this program featuring recent works by Silvestrov and American composers Elizabeth Brown and Shawn Jaeger. 

Program:Elizabeth BrownJust Visible in the Distance (2013)Valentin Silvestrov: String Quartet no. 3 (2011)Shawn Jaeger: Thy Wondering Eyes (2010)
JUNE 17: A Juneteenth Celebration! – curated by Stephanie Griffin, viola
Guest artist: bassist/composer Hilliard Green
Momenta celebrates the release of its CD “Alvin Singleton: Four String Quartets” on New World Records with a performance of his String Quartet no. 1 (1967) and Be Natural (1974), alongside Yusef Lateef’s String Quartet no. 3 and a world premiere for bass and string quartet by jazz bassist Hilliard Greene
Program:Alvin Singleton: String Quartet no. 1Alvin SingletonBe NaturalYusef Lateef: String Quartet no. 3HIlliard Greene: New work for bass and string quartet*
*world premiere, written for Momenta
Momenta Quartet
Emilie-Anne Gendron, violinAlex Shiozaki, violinStephanie Griffin, violaMichael Haas, cello
Momenta: the plural of momentum – four individuals in motion towards a common goal. This is the idea behind the Momenta Quartet, whose eclectic vision encompasses contemporary music of all aesthetic backgrounds alongside great music from the recent and distant past. The New York City-based quartet has premiered over 150 works, collaborated with over 200 living composers and was praised by The New York Times for its “diligence, curiosity and excellence.” In the words of The New Yorker’s Alex Ross, “few American players assume Haydn’s idiom with such ease.”
Momenta has appeared at such prestigious venues as the Library of Congress, National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery, Rubin Museum, Miller Theatre at Columbia University, the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Washington University in St. Louis, Ostrava Days in the Czech Republic, and at the internationally renowned Cervantino Festival in Mexico. Momenta has recorded for Centaur Records, Furious Artisans, PARMA, New World Records, and Albany Records; and has been broadcast on WQXR, Q2 Music, Austria’s Oe1, and Vermont Public Radio.
The Momenta Quartet’s 2021-2022 season is made possible through the generous support of the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, the Amphion Foundation, the Alice M. Ditson Fund, New Music USA, Chamber Music America, the Sparkplug Foundation, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. The 2022 Momenta Festival is supported by The Adele and John Gray Endowment Fund and through the generosity of many individual donors.