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Danish String Quartet

It’s no easy matter for a string quartet to acquire that rock-star vibe, especially for an ensemble that still keeps one foot firmly planted in the traditional chamber repertoire. But the Danish String Quartet has it, making the group’s every local appearance a special event.

You only have to hear the ensemble play to understand what’s going on — why audiences keep flocking to witness the combination of gritty energy and expressive urgency that these four musicians put on display. Their playing is smart, soulful and often profound.

For its upcoming visit to Berkeley, courtesy of Cal Performances, the program features familiar fare by Haydn, Webern and Beethoven. But that doesn’t mean the results will be ordinary.

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