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News Release

Date: February 16, 2006
Media Contact: Elizabeth Homan, 301-251-7970; Steve Simon, 301-251-7952

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String-Quartet-in-Residence to Perform at Montgomery College
Free Concert of Classical Music on March 6 at Rockville Campus

PHOTO EDITORS: For a high-resolution image of the quartet, click on this link: covington.jpg

The Montgomery College Music Department and “Empowered to Excel,” the instrumental music partnership program between Montgomery College and Montgomery County Public Schools, invite the community to an evening with the Covington String Quartet.  The quartet will perform on Monday, March 6, at 8 p.m., in Montgomery College’s Music Recital Hall, which is located in the Music Building on the Rockville Campus, 51 Mannakee Street, Rockville, Md. Concert selections include Beethoven’s op. 18, no. 6 in B flat major, Ravel Quartet in F major, and Schubert’s "Death and the Maiden" in D minor. The concert is free.

The quartet members are artists-in-residence for the Empowered to Excel program during this spring semester. As part of the Covington String Quartet’s residency at Montgomery College, the quartet’s members play side-by-side with student musicians in weekly rehearsals and at performances.  They also provide instruction at the Montgomery College Symphony Orchestra’s sectional training sessions.   The artists’ residency project is made possible through support from the Montgomery College Arts Institute.   

Established in 2001, the Covington String Quartet is comprised of Greg Pinney and Luke Wedge on violin, Will Hurd on viola, and Frank McKinster on cello. While retaining a focus on the great quartet masters of the 18th and 19th centuries, the Covington String Quartet does not hesitate to explore new musical horizons. A recent collaboration with Japanese composer Yukiko Nishimura resulted in the commission of an original film score to accompany Edison Studio’s 1910 silent film “Frankenstein.” This work premiered live last year as part of “Frankenstein: Penetrating the Secrets of Nature,” a traveling exhibit sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Library of Medicine.   

Montgomery County Public Schools students participating in the Empowered to Excel program are given the opportunity to play alongside college and professional musicians, like the Covington String Quartet, earn Student Service Learning (SSL) hours and receive college credit.

For more information, call Dr. Wen Wang Kurkul, conductor of the Montgomery College Symphony Orchestra and executive director of the Empowered to Excel program, at 301-251-7550.


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Montgomery College is a public, open admissions community college with campuses in Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring, plus workforce development/continuing education centers and off-site programs throughout Montgomery County, Md.  The College serves more than 55,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 100 areas of study.

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