In The Press

Praise for the Taos Chamber Music Group!

"One of the great treasures of Taos" -The Taos News
"Big magic...silken ensemble playing"
-Albuquerque Journal
“A remarkable concert of juxtaposed styles”
-Horse Fly
“Depth, vitality and inventiveness”
-Spencer Beckwith, KUNM
Taos Chamber Music Group 27th Season Opening Weekend features violinist Laurie Carney at the Harwood Museum of Art

The Taos Chamber Music Group kicks off its 27th Season with the elegant artistry of violinist Laurie Carney, who will be featured on Saturday and Sunday, October 5 & 6, 5:30 p.m. at the Harwood Museum of Art. Carney is a violinist with the highly acclaimed American String Quartet and a Taos favorite. She will be joined by pianist Debra Ayers and flutist Nancy Laupheimer for works by J.S. Bach (“Sonata in E Major”), Zoltán Kodály (“Adagio”), Eugene Goossens (“Four Sketches”) and Gabriel Fauré (“Sonata in A Major, Op. 13”). The two celebratory performances launch another series of compelling TCMG programs that run through May, 2020.

A founding member of the American String Quartet, Carney holds the distinction of performing quartets longer than any other woman in this elite field. The ASQ began concertizing while she was still an undergraduate at the Juilliard School, where she was the youngest student ever admitted to both the Preparatory and College Divisions.

In addition to the Quartet, which performs concerts around the world, Carney has per-formed trios with her husband, cellist William Grubb, and pianist Anton Nel; duos with violist Michael Tree; and as an ensemble partner to such artists as Isaac Stern, Pinchas Zukerman, Joshua Bell, Yefim Bronfman, Misha Dichter, and Frederica von Stade. Carney's concerto appearances include performing Mozart's “Sinfonia Concertante” with the Bournemouth Symphony, Basque National Orchestra, and the Welsh National Orchestra. She gave the premiere of Gianpaolo Bracali’s “Fantasia” for violin and piano, and Robert Sirota composed his “Violin Sonata No. 2” for her, which she performed last October in Taos.

A faculty artist at the Aspen Music Festival and School since 1974 and the Manhattan School of Music since 1984, Carney has held teaching positions at the Mannes College of Music, Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins Uni¬ver¬si¬ty, Shepherd School at Rice University, and the Taos School of Music, among others. Her dedication to the development of young players brings frequent invitations to give master classes, most recently in California, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan and New Mexico. Her violin is by Carlo Tononi and was made in Venice in 1763.

Of the Taos program Carney says: “I chose these works for a very simple reason- they're all beautiful, and none of the composers are well represented in the string quartet repertoire.” Bach didn’t write string quartets, so she relishes the chance to play one of his violins sonatas. “All of us in the ASQ say that if you were stranded on a desert island and could only choose one composer to listen to, it would be Bach!”

Kodaly’s “Adagio” is an early and extremely lyrical work, and was such a success during his life that Kodaly made arrangements for viola, cello and even an orchestral version. Laupheimer picked the “Four Sketches” for flute, violin and piano by British composer, violinist and conductor Eugene Goossens, a piece she describes as “expressive and exuberant.” Goossens was well-known during his lifetime (1893-1962). He was knighted in 1955 and worked as a conductor across the UK, US and Australia. The colorful “Four Sketches” were written in 1913, and contain a melding of French Impressionist and British Romantic styles.

About the Fauré “Violin Sonata” that will conclude the program, Carney says: “The string quartet repertoire has so little French music, so any chance to play it is lovely. Fauré only wrote one string quartet, and it's from the late period of his life. The music is very dark and lacks the shimmering beauty of this sonata. It was written in 1876 by the 31 year old organist/ pianist/ composer. Fauré had primarily written for choir before this as he held several positions as either organist or choir master at several churches in France. This sonata was considered a breakout work and was a great success after its premiere in Paris in Jan 1877. It’s distinguished by his use of harmonic and melodic innovations, and Fauré is credited with influencing the teaching of harmony for generations to come.”

Debra Ayers is a long-time member of TCMG and has known Carney since 1985 when she first worked at Aspen Music Festival. She has performed with Carney and her husband William Grubb for the Aspen Music in the Schools programs, and with her and violist Daniel Avshalomov at Colorado Mountain College in Breckenridge, as well as in recital concerts in Santa Fe. Laupheimer and Carney go back to 1980 when the American String Quartet were faculty for the Taos School of Music. Now close friends, Laupheimer welcomes the opportunity to work with and present Carney’s amazing talent.

Tickets and more information, visit or call the Harwood Museum, 238 Ledoux Street, 575-758-9826, where there is a discount for Alliance members. A dinner discount is being offered to concert goers after the performances from Doc Martin’s, Martyrs, the Gorge Bar & Grill and Lambert’s restaurants.


taoStyle Interview 2015

Taos News 10 Questions 2015