Doug Machiz (MM ’11), with his San Francisco-based Friction Quartet, from his performance at the Hearst Memorial Mining Building, receives a glowing review from the San Francisco Classical Voice:

Like intrepid space explorers expanding human knowledge of the cosmos, the Friction String Quartet is boldly broadening quartet repertoire by commissioning and performing new music. On Sunday evening at UC Berkeley’s Hearst Memorial Mining Building, an ample audience tuned in for Friction’s “Spaced Out,” a program of works inspired by ideas about the universe. Just as cosmic phenomena can be both familiar and mysterious, this performance was accessible yet surreal.

Friction’s young players are as accomplished in their artistry as they are unpretentious about everything, including performance space. While Hearst is beautiful, its three-story atrium and unlocked doors resulted in boomy acoustics and unsuspecting students occasionally wandering in during the performance. These quirks contributed to the concert’s charm.

Friction has won numerous recent honors, including a Carnegie Hall debut through a program with the Kronos Quartet. Judging by Sunday’s program of intense musicianship coupled with ambitious programming, Friction’s potential seems — a bit like the universe itself — immense and incalculable.

By Jessica Balik

Read the full review…