The Waveny Chamber Music Society, a non-profit organization, presents its third concert with a performance of The Alexander String Quartet on April 17, at 4 p.m. at Waveny Carriage Barn, Waveny Park, New Canaan.

The Alexander String Quartet has performed in the major music capitals of five continents, securing its standing among the world's premier ensembles over nearly three decades. Widely admired for its interpretations of Beethoven, Mozart, and Shostakovich, the quartet has also established itself as an important advocate of new music through more than 25 commissions and numerous premiere performances. The Alexander String Quartet is a major artistic presence in its home base of San Francisco, serving there as directors of the Morrison Chamber Music Center at the School of Music and Dance in the College of Creative Arts at San Francisco State University and Ensemble in Residence of San Francisco Performances.

The Alexander String Quartet's annual calendar of concerts includes engagements at major halls throughout North America and Europe. The quartet has appeared at Lincoln Center, the 92nd Street Y, and the Metropolitan Museum in New York City; Jordan Hall in Boston; the Library of Congress and Dumbarton Oaks in Washington; and chamber music societies and universities across the North American continent.

The Alexander String Quartet's 25th anniversary as well as the 20th anniversary of its association with New York City's Baruch College as Ensemble in Residence was celebrated through a performance by the ensemble of the Shostakovich string quartet cycle.

Highlights of the 2010-2011 season include a two multiple concert series for San Francisco Performances, one presenting the complete quartets of Bartók and Kodály and the other music of Dvořák; the conclusion of a Beethoven cycle for Mondavi Center; and a continuing annual series at Baruch College in New York City. The quartet also performs an all-Beethoven program at the Lied Center of Kansas, two tours of Spain (including the inaugural performances of a new festival in Godella), and a second tour of Argentina. They also continue their annual residencies at Allegheny College, Lewis & Clark College, and St. Lawrence University.

In celebration of the Alexander String Quartet's forthcoming 30th anniversary, San Francisco Performances has commissioned a new work for string quartet and mezzo-soprano from Jake Heggie; the work will be premiered in a performance in collaboration with Joyce DiDonato in February 2012 at the Herbst Theater.

The Alexander String Quartet was formed in New York City in 1981 and the following year became the first string quartet to win the Concert Artists Guild Competition. In 1985, the quartet captured international attention as the first American quartet to win the London International String Quartet Competition, receiving both the jury's highest award and the Audience Prize.

More Information

Fact box