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Haiku Reviews: From Louis Vuitton Waffles To A Shepherd's Documented Journey (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Posted: 04/27/2012 1:20 pm Updated: 05/ 1/2012 5:36 pm

Jerry Mcmillan

HuffPost Arts' Haiku Reviews are regular features where we invite critics to review exhibitions and performances in short form. Some will be in the traditional Haiku form of 5x7x5 syllables, others might be a sonnet or even a string of words. This week George Heymont, Laurence Vittes and Peter Frank capture the best of the art world now.

Check out the slideshow and let us know what you think in the comments section below:

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Pavel Haas Quartet
April 21, Samueli Theater
Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Britten: Three Divertimenti
Pavel Haas: Quartet No.2
Smetana: String Quartet in E Minor, "From My life"

Both Czech Republic and Slovakia have a long history of producing string quartets of extremely serious virtuosity and insightful music making. The young Pavel Haas Quartet is one of the latest in the line of succession, in this case "descended" from the famous, extremely serious Smetana Quartet whose violist, Milan Skampa, seemingly continues to tutor every young quartet in sight. The Quartet takes its name from the Czech composer Pavel Haas (1899-1944), who was imprisoned at Theresienstadt in 1941 and murdered at Auschwitz three years later. Quartets like these are very important to the health (strength?) of the classical music industry, and there are a lot of good ones out there ready to be snapped up right now. The leader of the Quartet, a strikingly beautiful blond named Veronika Jaruskova who was the original founder of the quartet, features a distinction common to all great Czech and Slovakian quartets, of being able to blend the first violin line in with the others so that the music is like you see it on the page when you're reading the score: All the lines are always there, before your eyes and thence your ears. The 12-minute Britten Divertimenti were originally called Go play, boy, play, and it's an invigorating early work which audiences will be eager to hear. Haas's Second Quartet is earnest, ardent, young and pregnant with fate. Veronika took over in the Smetana and kept it magnificently tight-lipped all the way. A large audience in wonderful Samueli Theater warmed to the serious nature of the Quartet's and the music's love and devotion.

By Laurence Vittes (drawing of Veronika Jaruskova by Larisa Pilinsky)

Correction: An earlier version of the first slide listed the Pavel Haas Quartet concert as taking place at the Orange County Performing Arts Center. It was in fact the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. We apologize for the error.

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