Zehetmair Quartet

Biography

Thomas Zehetmair, violin
Kuba Jakowicz, violin
Ruth Killius, viola
Christian Elliot, cello

The Zehetmair Quartet embarked upon their first concert tour in 1998, which led to immediate reinvitations from all promoters. Regular invitations to the USA and Japan are completing the Quartet’s annual European tours. Furthermore, the Zehetmair Quartet is a welcome guest at famous international summer festivals such as Edinburgh Festival and Helsinki Festival.
 
Highlights of past concert seasons include a cycle of all of Robert Schumann´s string quartets at Wigmore Hall in London, the world premiere of String Quartet No. 2 by Heinz Holliger – a work commissioned for the Zehetmair Quartet - as well as concerts at the Hong Kong Arts Festival, the Festival Printemps des Arts in Monte Carlo and in New York to commemorate Elliott Carter´s 100th birthday. Beyond that the quartet has made extended concert tours with performances in several German cities and at numerous outstanding chamber music series of Europe including Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris and Lisbon.
 
The Zehetmair Quartet has recorded Bartók's Fourth String Quartet and Hartmann's First Quartet as well as Schumann's First and Third String Quartets. Both recordings have won several awards, including Gramophone Award for Record of the Year, the Diapason d'Or, and the Klara Prize for Best International Production of the Year. The latest CD of Hindemith’s Quartet No 4 Bartok’s Quartet No 5, was honored by the press as a reference recording and was awarded with the Diapason d’Or of the Year. Future releases include a disc dedicated to works by Holliger and Beethoven.
 
After their debut at the Salzburg Festival in 2010 and a re-invitation in the following year the Zehetmair Quartet will perform in Salzburg again in 2012. The Quartet also enjoyed great success at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival with Beethoven´s string quartets op. 131 and op. 135 in 2011.

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Press

Recital 14 March 2014

Wigmore Hall

"The Zehetmairs came at it [Kreuzer Sonata] from a different angle, ultimately striking a finer balance between soulfulness and detachment...With Debussy's Quartet in G, too, the results of the players' experimentation were almost unfailingly positive, capturing the subtle shifts of light in the shimmering textures. The slow movement was a complete and wonderful work in itself." The Guardian, 17 March 2014

Concert January 2012

Wigmore Hall

"Especially impressive here [Mozart G major Quartet] was the Zehetmair’s disembodied pianissimo. The suave Tempo di Menuetto finale was lovely, and held some interesting textural risks...The sheer intelligence of the Zehetmair Quartet, from their programming to the music’s realisation, is invigorating."

Seen and Heard, 19 January 2012

Hindemith Recording

ECM New series

"The real surprise is Hindemith’s much less familiar Fourth Quartet…Zehetmair and his colleagues show that it deserves a place among the finest of 20th-century works... the Zehetmair Quartet really have set a new benchmark" The Guardian, April 2007

Concert July 2006

Cheltenham Festival 2006

"It was their performance of Bartok's epic Fifth Quartet that was the highlight of the programme. The enormous dynamic range the Zehetmairs create - from shimmering, delicate pianissimos to towering climaxes - made for a visceral experience...Not content with the challenges of Bartok and Mozart, an encore of a movement from a quartet by Hindemith was yet another demonstration of the unique alchemy between this group of players."

The Guardian, 5 July 2006

Recordings