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FREE TICKETS: Pro Musica of Detroit presents Cuarteto Latinoamericano @ Max M. Fisher Music Center - Friday 3/14/14

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Pro Musica of Detroit presents Cuarteto Latinoamericano

Detroit Premier for Latin Grammy Award Winners

Pro Musica of Detroit presents Cuarteto Latinoamericano, on Friday, March 14 at the Max M. Fisher Music Center. The performance represents the Detroit premier of Cuarteto Latinoamericano, an ensemble recognized as the world's leading proponent of Latin American music for string quartet.

Cuarteto Latinoamericano consists of brothers Álvaro Bitrán, cello; Arón Bitrán, violin; and Saul Bitran, violin; and brother-in-music, Javier Montiel, viola. Each a virtuoso talent, they established the Cuarteto Latinoamericano in 1982 in Mexico. The Cuarteto has served as quartet-in-residence of the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes in Mexico City and at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

In addition to moving audiences through their profound artistry and eclectic repertoire, the Cuarteto and its members are prolific recording artists. Cuarteto Latinoamericano are winners of the 2012 Latin Grammy Award for Best Classical Recording in recognition of their release, "Brasileiro: Works Of Francisco Mignone."

The Pro Musica performance, the Detroit debut of Cuarteto Latinoamericano, begins at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, March 14 at the Max M. Fisher Music Center in Detroit. Individual tickets are $45 for cabaret seating and $25 for theatre seating. They are available by calling the Max M. Fisher Box Office, telephone (313) 576-5111. Student tickets are $10 each, may be used for theatre or cabaret seating, and can be reserved by calling (313) 882-7775. All tickets include an Afterglow reception with the artists in the Orchestra Hall Atrium at The Max M. Fisher Music Center.

"People who attend chamber music concerts should expect a different experience than when attending an orchestra concert, said Saul Bitran.  He continues,"  In the orchestra repertoire, sometimes composers appeal to the audience by means of coloristic effects, sheer volume and power. However, in their compositions for string quartet, composers have less "special effects" at their disposal, so they write music which is purer and closer to their personal feelings. Even when one knows the composer, like Debussy, his string quartet will be different from his orchestral work. So is the case of Piazzolla and his piece Four for Tango, for string quartet:  it has the flavor and rhythm of a tango, but because of the instrumentation, the tango spirit is more essential and refined."

Cuarteto Latinoamericano has recorded almost all the Latin American repertoire for string quartet, including the complete works for quartet of Silvestre Revueltas, Alberto Ginastera, Heítor Villa-Lobos, Rodolfo Halffter and Julian Orbon. Cuarteto Latinoamericano also commissioned a quintet for guitar by American composer Michael Daugherty, a University of Michigan professor of music whom Pro Musica welcomed as an artist in 2002.

The quartet has designed a program for Pro Musica that illustrates the similarities and contrasts in compositional style between European and Latin American composers, Saul Bertrain said. The concert also will illuminate the unique qualities of music written in Central and South America, he added.

The Pro Musica of Detroit Cuarteto Latinoamericano program includes works by Astor Piazzolla, Claude Debussy, Domingo Lobato and Francisco Mignone. Members of Cuarteto Latinoamericano will welcome questions and comments in a discussion with the audience at the Afterglow.

Members of Cuarteto Latinoamericano have helped educate new generations of string players by establishing programs in Mexico, the United States, and Venezuela, where they have worked in conjunction with Dr. Jose Antonio Abreu and his pioneering music education program, "La Sistema" ("The System").

Cuarteto Latinoamericano will assist Pro Musica and its Education-Outreach work during their visit to Detroit. The ensemble will help build awareness of the benefits of classical music when they perform and teach students in a special program to be held at Detroit Cristo Rey High School on Friday, March 14 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. There also will be a dance interpretation performed to one of the Tangos by Cuarteto Latinoamericano by members of "Live Arts."

The 2013-2014 Pro Musica of Detroit season features concert performances with emerging talents from the world of classical music. Pianist Gilles Vonsattel performed on Sept. 11, 2013. Mr. Vonsattel also conducted a Master Class for students at Renaissance High School in Detroit. Cellist Amit Peled will perform on May 4, 2014 at the Max M. Fisher Music Center. To purchase tickets or to learn more about Pro Musica's upcoming concerts, please visit

March 14, 2014 Program Pro Musica of Detroit 

Cuarteto Latinoamericano 

Astor Piazzolla - Four for Tango

Claude Debussy - String Quartet Op. 10

Domingo Lobato - Cuarteto en Sol

Francisco Mignone - Cuarteto No. 2

About the Artists

Cuarteto Latinoamericano, formed in 1982, is known worldwide as the leading proponent of Latin American music for string quartet. This Latin Grammy winning ensemble from Mexico consists of the three Bitrán brothers, violinists Saúl and Arón and cellist Alvaro, along with violist Javier Montiel. The Cuarteto has recorded most of the Latin American repertoire for string quartet, and the sixth volume of their Villa-Lobos 17 quartets cycle, recorded for Dorian, was nominated for a Grammy award in 2002 in the field of Best Chamber Music Recording as well as for a Latin Grammy. Their CD, "Brasileiro, works of Mignone", on the Sono Luminus label, won a Latin Grammy for Best Classical Recording in 2012.

The Cuarteto has performed as soloist with many orchestras, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Seattle Symphony under Gerard Schwarz, with the National Arts Center Orchestra in Ottawa, the Orquesta Filarmónica de la Ciudad de México, the Dallas Symphony and the Símón Bolívar Orchestra of Venezuela. The Cuarteto has toured extensively around the world including performances in Europe and the Americas, Japan, China, New Zealand and Israel; they have appeared in a wide range of venues and festivals like the Concertgebouw, Milan's La Scala, Esterhazy Palace, the Kennedy Center, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Dartmouth College, Dartington International Summer School and the Ojai Festival. They have collaborated with many artists including cellist Janos Starker, pianists Cyprien Katsaris and Rudolph Buchbinder, tenor Ramon Vargas, and guitarists Narciso Yepes, Sharon Isbin, David Tanenbaum and Manuel Barrueco. With Mr. Barrueco, they have played in some of the most important venues of the USA and Europe, have recorded two cds, and commissioned guitar quintets from American composers Miguel del Aguila, Michael Daugherty and Gabriela Lena Frank.

The Cuarteto was in residence at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh from 1988 until 2008.

Under the auspices of the Sistema Nacional de Orquestas Juveniles of Venezuela, the Cuarteto has created the Latin American Academy for String Quartets, based in Caracas, which serves as a training ground for eight select young string quartets from the Sistema. The Cuarteto visits the Academy four times a year.

Since 2004, the Cuarteto has been a recipient of the México en Escena grant given by the Mexican government through FONCA (National Fund for Culture and the Arts).

"Matchless in tonal magnitude, tuneful fluency and concentrated teamwork." -- The Washington Post

About Pro Music of Detroit

Since 1928, ProMusica of Detroit has introduced many of the world's most eminent names in music, including composers Béla Bartók, Maurice Ravel, and Aaron Copland and performers Joshua Bell, Jessye Norman and the Guarneri String Quartet to the Detroit community.     

In so doing, Pro Musica seeks to build bridges of fine music to bring together hearts and minds of music lovers, music students and artists across time and space, so all can gain new friends, new insights, and a deeper appreciation of the wonder that is the art of music and the artists who make it possible.

Now in its 87th season, the mission of Pro Musica of Detroit is to present artists and works at the forefront of classical music. For more information, please visit