Praised by The New Yorker as “a fresh and
vital young participant in what is a golden age of American string
quartets,” the Daedalus Quartet has established itself as a leader
among the new generation of string ensembles. In the twelve years
of its existence the Daedalus Quartet has received plaudits from
critics and listeners alike for the security, technical finish,
interpretive unity, and sheer gusto of its performances. The
New York Times has praised the Daedalus Quartet’s
“insightful and vibrant” Haydn, the “impressive intensity” of
their Beethoven, their “luminous” Berg, and the “riveting focus”
of their Dutilleux. The Washington Post in turn has
acclaimed their performance of Mendelssohn for its “rockets of
blistering virtuosity,” while the Houston Chronicle has
described the “silvery beauty” of their Schubert and the “magic
that hushed the audience” when they played Ravel, the Boston
Globe the “finesse and fury” of their Shostakovich, the Toronto
Globe and Mail the “thrilling revelation” of their
Hindemith, and the Cincinnati Enquirer the “tremendous
emotional power” of their Brahms.
Since its founding the Daedalus Quartet has performed in many of the world’s leading musical venues; in the United States and Canada these include Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center (Great Performers series), the Library of Congress, the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C., and Boston’s Gardner Museum, as well as on major series in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary, Winnipeg, and Vancouver. Abroad the ensemble has been heard in such famed locations as the Musikverein in Vienna, the Mozarteum in Salzburg, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Cité de la Musique in Paris, and in leading venues in Japan.
The Daedalus Quartet has won plaudits for its adventurous exploration of contemporary music, most notably the compositions of Elliott Carter, George Perle, György Kurtág and György Ligeti. Among the works the ensemble has premiered is David Horne’s Flight from the Labyrinth, commissioned for the Quartet by the Caramoor Festival; Fred Lerdahl’s Third String Quartet, commissioned by Chamber Music America; and Lawrence Dillion’s String Quartet No. 4, commissioned by the Thomas S. Kenan Institute for the Arts. The 2010-2011 season featured the premiere of Richard Wernick’s String Quartet No. 8, commissioned for the Daedalus Quartet by the Bay Shore Schools Arts Education Fund and the Islip Arts Council. Daedalus premiered Joan Tower’s WHITE WATER (String Quartet No. 5), commissioned for them by Chamber Music Monterey Bay, in April 2012. A new work, for clarinet and string quartet, by Vivian Fung, will be premiered in the 2015-2016 season in collaboration with Romie de Guise-Langlois. The Quartet has collaborated with many of the world’s finest instrumentalists: these include pianists Marc-André Hamelin, Simone Dinnerstein, Awadagin Pratt, Joyce Yang, and Benjamin Hochman; clarinetists Paquito D’Rivera, David Shifrin, and Alexander Fiterstein; and violists Roger Tapping and Donald Weilerstein.
To date the Quartet has forged associations with some of America’s leading classical music and educational institutions: Carnegie Hall, through its European Concert Hall Organization (ECHO) Rising Stars program; and Lincoln Center, which appointed the Daedalus Quartet as the Chamber Music Society Two quartet for 2005-07. The Daedalus Quartet has been Columbia University’s Quartet-in-Residence since 2005, and has served as Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania since 2006. In 2007, the Quartet was awarded Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award. The Quartet won Chamber Music America’s Guarneri String Quartet Award, which funded a three-year residency in Suffolk County, Long Island from 2007-2010.
The Daedalus Quartet’s debut recording, music of Stravinsky, Sibelius, and Ravel, was released by Bridge Records in 2006 (“brilliantly perceptive interpretations” –Musical America). A Bridge recording of the Haydn’s complete “Sun” Quartets, Op. 20, was released on two CDs in the summer of 2010 (“you could only marvel at the finesse” –Philadelphia Inquirer), and immediately followed by an album of chamber music by Lawrence Dillon was released in the fall (“[They] enthusiastically articulate these ingeniously quirky scores” –National Public Radio). The complete string quartets of Fred Lerdahl was released in Fall 2011 ([The Daedalus Quartet’s] Joycean name indicates their own capacity for mind-nourishing works and gripping accounts –WQXR). The most recent recording, as with all the others from Bridge Records, released in 2013, is the first volume of the complete quartets of George Perle (“played with eloquence and ardor” –San Francisco Chronicle).
Among the highlights of the Daedalus Quartet’s 2013-2014 season were performances for the Cleveland Chamber Music Society, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Raleigh Chamber Music Society, Market Square Concerts, the Maverick Concerts, and the Festival Internacional de Música de Cámara de San Miguel de Allende. They also performed residencies, “Music from Exile,” exploring the music of composers who were forced into various states of exile by the Third Reich, at the University of Iowa and for the St. Cloud Chamber Music Society. The 2014-2015 seasion will include performances for Great Performers at Lincoln Center, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Chamber Music Albuquerque, the Chamber Music Concerts (Ashland), Music Toronto, and a tour of South Korea.
The award-winning members of the Daedalus Quartet hold degrees from the Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Cleveland Institute, and Harvard University.