Photograph of Carducci Quartet by : Andy Holdsworth
The Mary Ryan Concert
Matthew Denton violin, Michelle Fleming violin, Eoin Schmidt-Martin viola, Emma Denton cello
An internationally renowned Anglo-Irish string quartet based in the UK, the versatile and award-winning Carducci String Quartet has performed everything from brand new quartets, classic works by Haydn, complete Shostakovich cycles, and even partnered with folk-rock icon Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull. Founded in 1997, the ensemble has won numerous international competitions, including Concert Artists Guild International Competition USA 2007 and First Prize at Finland’s Kuhmo International Chamber Music Competition 2004. In 2016, it took home a Royal Philharmonic Society Award for its performances of cycles of the complete Shostakovich Quartets. This Shostakovich15 project was accompanied by a recording of quartets 4, 8 and 11 for Signum Classics, to which the quartet added a further volume in spring 2019 (1,2 and 7) acclaimed by Gramophone Magazine for its “…athletic, upfront performances, clear in texture, forthright in tone and bold in articulation.” The quartet has released a bevy of acclaimed recordings on their own label, Carducci Classics, as well as Signum Classics, and their Naxos recordings of Philip Glass Quartets have had over six million plays on Spotify.
Described by The Strad as presenting “a masterclass in unanimity of musical purpose, in which severity could melt seamlessly into charm, and drama into geniality″, the Carducci Quartet is recognised as one of today’s most successful string quartets. Performing over 90 concerts worldwide each year the quartet also run an annual Carducci festival in Highnam, Gloucester and are quartet in residence at Dean Close in Cheltenham, where they teach young string players and coach chamber music.
The Carducci Quartet appear at prestigious venues across the globe including the Wigmore Hall, London; National Concert Hall, Dublin; Tivoli Concert Hall, Copenhagen; The Frick Collection and Carnegie Hall, New York; Library of Congress and John. F Kennedy Center, Washington D.C.; St Lawrence Center for the Arts, Toronto; and Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. Festival residencies include Cheltenham, Ryedale, Lichfield, Presteigne, Kilkenny, Snape Proms, and West Cork.
In 2020 the quartet celebrated Beethoven’s 250th anniversary with various immersive projects, including a weekend of concerts at London’s Barbican Centre. This season also included a return to LSO St Luke’s, tours to Spain and Germany, and chamber music projects with clarinettists Julian Bliss and Emma Johnson, pianists Martin Roscoe and Kate Whitley, oud player Joseph Tawadros, and the Navarra Quartet.
Highly celebrated for its interpretation of contemporary repertoire, the Carducci Quartet has curated many diverse projects and is regularly invited to perform new works. Recent and upcoming premieres include works by Simon Rowland-Jones, Gavin Higgins, Karl Jenkins, Jonny Greenwood and Kate Whitley. In 2015 it curated projects around Philip Glass and Steve Reich as part of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award winning ‘Minimalism Unwrapped’ at Kings Place in London.
Education work is an important element of the Carducci Quartet’s work, earning it a place on the Royal Philharmonic Society Award shortlist for their family concert ‘Getting the Quartet Bug!’. The Carducci Music Trust was set up to support its work in schools and with young musicians. It is also The Carne Trust Ensemble in Residence at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London and performs a number of school concerts each year supported by the CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust.