Chicago Classical Review at the Symphony Center matinée featuring the complete Brahms PIano Quartets

“Performing just one of Brahms’ mighty piano quartets demands four players with sterling technique, musical depth and physical stamina. Sunday afternoon at Symphony Center, pianist Leif Ove Andsnes and colleagues provided the full Johannes, performing all three of Brahms piano quartets in a program spanning nearly three hours with one intermission. The Norwegian pianist was joined by violist Tabea Zimmermann, cellist Clemens Hagen, and violinist James Ehnes, the last a late substitute for the previously announced Christian Tetzlaff.

“Throughout the afternoon, the artists betrayed not a hint of fatigue–especially striking considering they had performed the same challenging program just the previous night in New York. Far from it–their performances were polished to a fine sheen, with close ensemble cohesion, distinctive individual playing and a degree of expressive insight that at times proved revelatory … an extraordinary afternoon of music, which proved a highlight of this season.”