The Pacific Rim String Quartet (PRSQ) opened its third season at the Pacific Theatre (in Vancouver) with quartets by Beethoven, Suk and Borodin. I’m not a music critic, or even a musician, but I always enjoy the precise and energetic playing of the PRSQ and last night was no exception. Pacific Theatre, which is on 12th just off Granville in Vancouver, is an intimate venue with a relaxed and friendly feel about it. Brian Mix, the cellist, introduces each piece with some background information about the music and the composer (this time he quoted the violist who described the Suk piece as “sounding like it came from a young composer who didn’t know what to leave out”) a practice that is a lot more interesting that just reading program notes.
For me the best piece of the night was String Quartet No. 2 by Borodin: its lush and lyrical sound carried me away and I was sorry when it ended.
The next concerts in the series aren’t until next year, March 20 and May 8 but the quartet will be playing as part of “Midweek Music at St. Anselm’s” on Feb. 10 and the individual musicians, Li-Ling Liao, Ruth Huang, Robin Streb and Brian Mix, can be found playing around town either as soloists or in other ensembles.
Before last night’s concert by PRSQ, a bunch of us had dinner around the corner at Rangoli: great food, great service and great company. They don’t take reservations so get there early, and be sure to leave room for rice pudding—the south Asian version, with lots of cardamon.