River Oaks Chamber Orchestra: Six Degrees of Tolstoy

Here’s a complicated lineage — a Beethoven sonata that inspired a Tolstoy novel that inspired a string quartet. Is there a recognizable relationship between the sonata and the string quartet? River Oaks Chamber Orchestra lets you answer that question for yourself at Six Degrees of Tolstoy, an unusual performance that ties together literature, music and the effects of each on the other.

A ROCO string quartet made up of Maureen Nelson, Cece Belcher, Matt Dane and Richard Belcher, with guest pianist Eliza Ching, performs Schubert’s String Trio in B flat, Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 9, The Kreutzer Sonata and Janacek’s String Quartet No. 1. “For me, the connection between Beethoven, Tolstoy and Janacek is that each artist was urgently obsessed with exquisite precision in meaning,” Dane said. “When I read Tolstoy or play either Beethoven or Janacek, I have the clear feeling that no note or word, no musical or written suggestion, is casual. Everything matters vitally.”

The event is part of ROCO’s Unchambered series, which brings classical small ensembles to unusual venues around Houston. Artistic Director and ROCO founder Alecia Lawyer enjoys the relationship between the modern accessibility of books and availability of music.

5 p.m. The Printing Museum, 1324 West Clay. For information, call 713-665-2700 or visit rocohouston.org. $25.
Sun., Feb. 22, 5 p.m., 2015

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Alexandra Doyle