Stanford, CA, August 2013—The St. Lawrence String Quartet, Stanford’s Grammy-nominated resident ensemble, has awarded the Cecilia String Quartet its 2013 John Lad Prize. Presented in collaboration with Stanford Live and Vancouver's Music on Main series, the award includes invitations from both organizations to perform during the 2014-15 season.
Now in its third year, the Lad prize is named in honor of the SLSQ’s dear friend John Lad (Stanford ’74), a violist and ardent chamber music lover who passed away in 2007. He was a decades-long practitioner of Tai Chi, a regular lecturer in Philosophy and at the time of his death was teaching Tai Chi in the physical education department at Columbia/Barnard University.
The SLSQ was initially introduced to Lad when they were preparing R. Murray Shafer's String Quartet no. 6 (“Parting the Wild Horses Main”), a composition which combines string quartet with the movements of Tai Chi. He went on to perform and tour with the ensemble across North America and Europe for several seasons, and eventually joined each summer for their Chamber Music Seminar. Lad quickly became a fixture at the seminar playing viola in an assigned group, leading early morning Tai Chi classes in Braun Courtyard, playing a Tai Chi based ball toss game with an eager participant, then reading chamber music late into the night.