The Dover Quartet
Sunday, March 03, 2019, 3:00 pm
“…the Dover Quartet players have it in them to become the next Guarneri String Quartet – they’re that good.” – The Chicago Tribune
P R O G R A M
Quartet in F major, Op. 18, No. 1
Quartet in D major, Op. 18, No. 3
Quartet in C minor, Op. 18, No. 4
The phenomenal Philadelphia-based Dover Quartet catapulted to international stardom following a stunning sweep of the 2013 Banff Competition. Recently named the Cleveland Quartet Award winner, and awarded the coveted Avery Fisher Career Grant, the Dover has become one of the most in-demand ensembles in the world. The Quartet’s rise from up-and-coming young ensemble to occupying a spot at the top of their field has been “practically meteoric” (Strings). With its burnished warmth, incisive rhythms, and natural phrasing, the Quartet’s distinctive sound has helped confirm its status as “the young American string quartet of the moment” (New Yorker). The Quartet serves as the quartet-in-residence for the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University.
In the spring of 2016, the Dover Quartet was recognized with the Hunt Family Award, one of the inaugural Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Awards, and in past years has taken top prizes at the Fischoff Competition and the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition. All four Quartet members are consummate solo artists: first violinist Joel Link took first prize at the Menuhin Competition; violinist Bryan Lee and violist Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt have appeared as soloists with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Tokyo Philharmonic, respectively; and cellist Camden Shaw released a solo album debut on the Unipheye Music label. As Strad magazine observes, “With their exceptional interpretative maturity, tonal refinement, and taut ensemble,” the Dover Quartet is “pulling away from their peers.”
Hailed as “the next Guarneri Quartet” (Chicago Tribune), the Dover Quartet draws from the lineage of that distinguished ensemble, as well that of the Cleveland and Vermeer Quartets; its members studied at the Curtis Institute of Music and Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where they were mentored extensively by Shmuel Ashkenasi, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, Kenneth Goldsmith, Joseph Silverstein, Arnold Steinhardt, Michael Tree, and Peter Wiley. It was at Curtis that the Quartet first formed, and its name pays tribute to Dover Beach by fellow Curtis alumnus Samuel Barber. The group has since returned for residencies to Rice in 2011-13, and to Curtis, where it became the conservatory’s first Quartet-in-Residence, in 2013-14. In addition, in 2015 the Dover was appointed the first Resident Ensemble of Peoples’ Symphony Concerts in the 116-year history of New York City's oldest concert series.
The Dover Quartet is dedicated to sharing its music with under-served communities and is actively involved with Music for Food, an initiative enabling musicians to raise resources and awareness in the fight against hunger.
The Dover Quartet plays on the following instruments:
Joel Link: Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, Paris circa 1857, on loan by Desiree Ruhstradt
Bryan Lee: Riccardo Antoniazzi, Milan 1904
Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt: Michele Deconet, Venice, 1780, the ‘Kroyt,’ generously on loan from the grandson of Boris Kroyt of the Budapest Quartet
Camden Shaw: Sam Zygmuntowicz, Brooklyn 2010
P R E S S
“The Dover Quartet’s Kennedy Center debut shows why they should be on must-hear list…..a triumph.” ~ Charles T. Downey, Washington Post
“A quartet to reckon with…for me, this was string quartet nirvana.” ~ James M. Keller, Santa Fe New Mexican
“A sound so distinctive as to be identified within mere minutes.” ~ David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic, Philadelphia Inquirer
“Excellent and fast-rising.” ~ Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times
"The quartet has already reached the top echelons of chamber music performance... it was as gorgeous a string quartet sound as I have ever heard...a performance to treasure." ~ Robin Elliott, Musical Toronto
"To the outside observer, the Dover Quartet’s rise to the top looks practically meteoric. Since winning all four prizes at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, the group has performed more than 100 concerts a year in locations spanning four continents." ~ Miranda Wilson, String Magazine