July 1, 2022
The Calidore String Quartet
The Calidore String Quartet has been praised by the New York Times for its “deep reserves of virtuosity and irrepressible dramatic instinct.” The Los Angeles Times described the quartet as “astonishing,” their playing “shockingly deep,” approaching “the kind of sublimity other quartets spend a lifetime searching” and praised its balance of “intellect and expression.” The Washington Post has said that “Four more individual musicians are unimaginable, yet these speak, breathe, think and feel as one.”
Recipient of a 2018 Avery Fisher Career Grant and a 2017 Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award, the Calidore String Quartet first made international headlines as winner of the $100,000 Grand Prize of the 2016 M-Prize International Chamber Music Competition. The quartet was the first North American ensemble to win the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist, and is currently in residence with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program.
In summer 2021, the Calidore made debuts at the Sarasota, La Jolla and Saratoga Music Festivals as well as the Schubert Club of St. Paul, MN. Highlights of the 21-22 season include returns to Wigmore Hall, Alice Tully Hall and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. The Calidore will make their debut at the Library of Congress, the 92nd Street Y, Harvard University, Penn State University and internationally in The Hague and Antwerp. They will premiere a new work by composer Huw Watkins commissioned by Wigmore Hall and will collaborate with the Emerson Quartet and pianists Jeffrey Kahane, Henry Kramer and Gabriela Fahnenstiel.
Highlights of recent seasons have included performances in major venues throughout North America, Europe, and Asia including Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, the Kennedy Center, Konzerthaus Berlin, Brussels’s BOZAR, Cologne Philharmonie, Seoul’s Kumho Art Hall, and at significant festivals including the BBC Proms, Verbier, Ravinia, Mostly Mozart, Music@Menlo, Rheingau, East Neuk, and Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
The Calidore String Quartet’s second album for Signum Records, entitled BABEL, was released in October 2020 and features works by Schumann, Shostakovich and Caroline Shaw. The Strad selected the album as the “Editor’s Choice” and praised it as “breathtaking…a universally impressive disc”. The quartet’s other recordings include 2018’s Resilience including “lively, intelligent performances of an attractive and thought-provoking program” (Gramophone) of quartets by Mendelssohn, Prokofiev, Janácek, and Golijov; quartets by Bartok, Mozart, Bach, Tchaikovsky and Mendelssohn recorded at the Music@Menlo festival; their debut album of quartets by Mendelssohn and Haydn, and an album of music commemorating the World War I centennial. The Calidore’s members were Young Artists in Residence on American Public Media’s Performance Today, and their performances have been broadcast on NPR, the BBC, the CBC, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, Korean Broadcasting System, Bayerischer Rundfunk (Munich), Norddeutscher Rundfunk (Hamburg), and were aired on German national television as part of a documentary produced by ARD public broadcasting.
The Calidore has given world premieres of works by Caroline Shaw, Hannah Lash and Mark-Anthony Turnage among others. Its collaborations with esteemed artists and ensembles include Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Marc-André Hamelin, Joshua Bell, David Shifrin, Inon Barnatan, Lawrence Power, Sharon Isbin, David Finckel and Wu Han. The Calidore has collaborated and studied closely with the Emerson Quartet and Quatuor Ébène, and has also studied with Andre Roy, Arnold Steinhardt, Günter Pichler, Guillaume Sutre, Paul Coletti, and Ronald Leonard.
As a passionate supporter of music education, the Calidore String Quartet is committed to mentoring and educating young musicians, students, and audiences. In 2021 the Calidore joined the faculty of the University of Delaware School of Music and serve as directors of the newly established Graduate String Quartet Residency. Formerly, they served as artist-in-residence at the University of Toronto, University of Michigan and Stony Brook University.
The Calidore String Quartet was founded at the Colburn School in Los Angeles in 2010. Within two years, the quartet won grand prizes in virtually all the major US chamber music competitions, including the Fischoff, Coleman, Chesapeake, and Yellow Springs competitions, and it captured top prizes at the 2012 ARD International Music Competition in Munich and the International Chamber Music Competition Hamburg. An amalgamation of “California” and “doré” (French for “golden”), the ensemble’s name represents its reverence for the diversity of culture and the strong support it received from its original home: Los Angeles, California, the “golden state.”