Center Stage Series: 'Notes from the Balcony': Boston Brass and Enso String Quartet to perform March 8

The Boston Brass and Enso String Quartet combine in a distinctive and fun performance inspired by Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" in the Luther College Center for Faith and Life Main Hall, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 8.

The "Notes from the Balcony" performance is part of Luther College's 2013-14 Center Stage Series of professional performing arts events. Tickets for the performance are available online at

The "Notes from the Balcony" performance consists of a wide variety of works including three movements from Kabalevsky's "Romeo and Juliet," Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" Concert Suite, Op. 64, Elvis Costello's "Juliet Letters" and Leonard Bernstein's symphonic dances from "West Side Story."

The Boston Brass and Enso String Quartet combine to make a rare nine-piece ensemble, including percussion and piano.

The goal of Boston Brass is to provide audiences with a wide selection of musical styles in unique arrangements, while providing a friendly and fun atmosphere. The group is known for its ability to captivate people of all ages through their exciting use of classical arrangements and jazz standards.

Boston Brass has been featured on The CBS "Early Show," National Public Radio's "Performance Today," and The Great American Brass Band Festival and has recorded several diverse albums. "Latin Nights," their latest offering, features a collection of some of the greatest classical and jazz works by Latin composers and performers. Included in this album are legendary drummer Steve Gadd, and the beautiful voice of Talita Real, along with  percussion and guitar.

The Enso String Quartet regularly performs the classics of string quartet literature, but also focuses on lesser-known works that have not had as much of a voice. The ensemble performs many of its own transcriptions, including arrangements of 16th century Renaissance music.

The ensemble takes its name from ensō, which is derived from the Japanese Zen painting of a circle, representing many things: perfection and imperfection, the moment of chaos that is creation, the emptiness of the void, the endless circle of life and the fullness of the spirit.

The quartet claimed multiple honors at the 2004 Banff International String Quartet Competition, including the prize for Best Performance of the commissioned "Piece-de-Concert." Other accomplishments of the ensemble include victories at the 2003 Concert Artists Guild International Competition, the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and the Chamber Music Yellow Springs Competition.

Tickets for the performance are $24 for adults, $22 for seniors age 65 and over, and $15 for youth ages 4-18. They can be purchased by calling the Ticket Office at (563) 387-1357; or by visiting the Luther Ticket Office, open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 9-10:30 a.m. and 11a.m.-3 p.m.; and Tuesday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., with extended hours on Thursdays, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

The Center Stage Series dinner will be served at 5:30 p.m. in the Peace Dining Room on the second floor of the Dahl Centennial Union. Dinner tickets are $17 per person with an accompanying Center Stage Series performance ticket, or $19 for the dinner alone. The menu consists of strawberry fields salad, seafood or vegetarian cioppino, oyster mushrooms with peppers and onions and cherries jubilee cheesecake martini. Wine and beer will also be available for purchase.

Boston Brass
Enso String Quartet