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Spotlight: Takacs Quartet


6 p.m. Thu. March 22, Telfair Academy of Arts & Sciences

6 p.m. Fri. March 23, Telfair Academy of Arts & Sciences

Not every classical musician grows up with the dream of performing with Philip Seymour Hoffman. But that's what the Takacs Quartet did once in a performance of "Everyman" in Carnegie Hall, inspired by a Philip Roth novel. Such experimentation is par for the course for this Hungarian ensemble, which has pushed the envelope of chamber music since its founding in 1975. While much less known than the Emerson String Quartet, which is also performing at the Savannah Music Festival, some say the Takacs Quartet has an even better grasp of the heart of the chamber music repertoire, those late period Romantic pieces perhaps best embodied by their fellow Hungarian Bela Bartok. In this, their Savannah debut, the Takacs Quartet opens the Festival this Thursday at the Telfair Academy with a remarkably representative performance of a Beethoven quartet (the Quartet won a Grammy in 2003 for a Beethoven recording) and works by Bartok and Schubert. A day later, on Friday, they join with pianist Menachim Pressler and cellist Josephine Knight in another Schubert work and a Shostakovich piano quintet.