The Abeo Quartet launches its year-long residency at Caramoor by delving into masterpieces by Mendelssohn and Beethoven. Also on the program is a piece by 23-year-old Iranian-American composer, Kian Ravaei, entitled The Little Things which takes its inspiration from Emily Dickinson and her passion for directing our attention toward nature’s easily overlooked wonders. Formed in 2018, Abeo is swiftly sweeping up the competition prizes and garnering critical praise worldwide. You’ll understand why their name (“ah-bey-oh”) — an expression of joy in a Nigerian dialect — perfectly encapsulates the group’s love for playing chamber music and sharing it with others.
Njioma Grevious, violin
Rebecca Benjamin, violin
James Kang, viola
Brian Gadbow, cello
Felix Mendelssohn: String Quartet No. 2 in A minor, Op. 13
Kian Ravaei: The Little Things (New York premiere)
Ludwig van Beethoven: String Quartet No. 12 in E-flat Major, Op. 127
The Abeo Quartet, formed at Juilliard in 2018, was the inaugural Graduate String Quartet in Residence at the University of Delaware under the mentorship of the Calidore String Quartet in 2022. Abeo’s recent accomplishments include winning Third Prize at the 2023 Bad Tölz International String Quartet Competition and being among ten quartets invited to participate in the 14th Banff International String Quartet Competition in 2022. The quartet was also a First Prize and Audience Favorite Prize winner in the Yellow Springs Chamber Music Competition for Emerging Professional Ensembles and Silver Medal winner of the Chesapeake International Chamber Music Competition, both in 2022. Abeo was also a finalist in the 2021 Young Concert Artists International Competition and the silver medal winner of the 2019 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition.
One of the quartet’s earliest performances was at The Kennedy Center’s Reach Festival with distinguished pianist Joseph Kalichstein in 2019. Highlights of Abeo’s 2022-23 season included performances at Music@Menlo, Schneider Concert Series, the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival and collaborations with members of the Calidore, Dover, and Emerson string quartets.
Abeo has also appeared at Alice Tully Hall, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s masterclass series with the Danish String Quartet, and on WQXR’s Midday Masterpieces. Abeo was invited to perform in Norway’s 2019 Vertavo Festival, performing seven Haydn string quartets, and was in residence at the Glenstone Museum, debuting Moonshot by Alistair Coleman. The quartet has studied and performed at Music@Menlo and at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival with the Brentano String Quartet. At the Montreal International String Quartet Academy, Abeo has been coached by members of Quatuor Ebene, Alban Berg, Takács, Artemis, Cecilia, and Meta4 String Quartets.
During their time at Juilliard, Abeo studied regularly in the Honors Chamber Music Program under the tutelage of The Juilliard String Quartet with Joseph Lin, Astrid Schween, and Roger Tapping. The quartet chose the name Abeo / ah – bey – oh / — an expression of joy in a Nigerian dialect — to reflect their love for playing chamber music and sharing it with others.
To learn more about the Abeo Quartet, please visit abeoquartet.com.