Extending string quartet

Extending string quartet: Spaces

  • 14:15
  • 29.01.2018
  • Kleine Zaal



Diamanda Dramm violin
Sarah Saviet violin
Wenting Kan viola
Marie Schmidt cello

Including works by Knox, Lachenmann, Sciarrino and Ligeti

In 2011 Garth Knox (former violist of the Arditti Quartet) and the violinist Diamanda Dramm started a unique collaboration. They created a series of concert etudes for violin, focused on essential techniques used in contemporary music. These Violin Spaces are based on Knox’s Viola Spaces which are popular among violists. The Spaces invite the player and listeners to approach contemporary music in a new manner.

More info about Diamanda Dramm

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Especially for the String Quartet Biennale Diamanda Dramm has found an extraordinary interlocutor in Jacques Klöters. Together with him and three musician colleagues she has made a programme for the purpose of transporting the Spaces into a larger context; namely that of the string quartet. Taking a detour through composers including Lachenmann, Sciarinno and Ligeti they make a journey from the brand new Violin Spaces to Knox’s string quartet, in which all these techniques are interwoven.

Diamanda Dramm

Extending string quartet: Voice

  • 14:15
  • 30.01.2018
  • Grote Zaal



Rosa Arnold violin
Jeanita Vriens violin
Annemijn Bergkotte viola
Rebecca Wise cello

Katharine Dain soprano
Marine Fribourg mezzo-soprano

Peter Sculthorpe Island Dreaming
Caroline Shaw By & By
Osvaldo Golijov How Slow the Wind
Osvaldo Golijov Lua Desclorida
Mayke Nas In & Out
Béla Bartók String Quartet no. 2

It has been said that of all musical instruments string instruments most closely resemble the human voice. The Ragazze Quartet puts this claim to the test and teams up with members of the Damask Ensemble during three editions of the String Quartet Biennale to investigate the common ground and differences between the string quartet and human voice. During each edition a new area will be singled out and placed under the spotlight.

In 2018 the Ragazze Quartet will begin with an uncultivated primal sound, performing works by Sculthorpe, Golijov, Shaw, Bartók and Nas together with the soprano Katharine Dain and mezzo-soprano Marine Fribourg.

More info about Ragazze Kwartet, Damask Ensemble

Ragazze Quartet
Marine Fribourg
Katharine Dain

Extending string quartet: JÖrg Widmann

  • 13:15
  • 31.01.2018
  • Grote Zaal



Florian Donderer violin
Annette Walther violin
Xandi van Dijk viola
Thomas Schmitz cello

Sarah Maria Sun soprano
Jörg Widmann composer

Jörg Widmann String Quartet no. 1
Jörg Widmann Choralquartett
Jörg Widmann Jagdquartett
Jörg Widmann
String Quartet no. 4
Jörg Widmann Versuch über die Fuge (‘Attempt at a Fugue’)

Jörg Widmann‘s string quartets are proof that the genre is alive and kicking. His oeuvre, which is still steadily evolving, is already considered part of the canon and is included on the repertoire list of many quartets throughout the world. Fot this reason the German Signum Quartet decided to dedicate a major programme to him, immersing themselves in his works together with the composer himself.

More info about Signum Quartett, Jörg Widmann, Sarah Maria Sun

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Widmann’s five string quartets have a combined duration of just 65 minutes; scarcely longer than some string quartets on their own. What the composer succeeds in composing in the space of these minutes is all the more impressive. From the wild rollercoaster ride of his Jagdquartett, to the fleeting sounds of his Choralquartett; the Signum Quartet joins Jörg Widmann in analysing his immense musical spectrum.


Extending string quartet: Louis Andriessen

  • 14:15
  • 01.02.2018
  • Grote Zaal



Joris van Rijn violin
Emi Ohi Resnick violin
Gijs Kramers viola
Jeroen den Herder cello

Louis Andriessen Miserere
Luciano Berio Glosse for string quartet
John Cage String Quartet in Four Parts
Louis Andriessen Facing Death

Works by J.S. Bach 

The Ruysdael Quartet meets Louis Andriessen in a programme with his work at its heart. This afternoon they jointly describe the context of his string quartets, in word and music. Among other pieces the Ruysdael Quartet also plays music by John Cage, a tip from Andriessen himself: ‘John Cage’s String Quartet in Four Parts is a work that I highly regard – from the period that he still composed notes extremely well. What a superb piece.’

More info about Ruysdael Kwartet, Louis Andriessen


Extending string quartet: DoelenKwartet

  • 14:15
  • 02.02.2018
  • Kleine Zaal



Frank de Groot violin
Maartje Kraan violin
Karin Dolman viola
Hans Woudenberg cello

Bart Visman Octet (world première)
Mariell Vain New work (Conservatorium van Amsterdam)
Leon Haxby New work (Conservatorium van Amsterdam)
Bas van Yperen New work (Conservatorium van Amsterdam)

How is it for young musicians to play music while the ink is still wet on the page? How does a composer feel when confronted with the first interpretation? And how do musicians and composers collaborate? The DoelenKwartet is a renowned Dutch quartet specialised in contemporary music. Having much experience in working together with many composers, it now helps young artists in the process of finding each other.

More info about DoelenKwartet, Bart Visman

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This workshop was preceded by a large-scale project in collaboration with the String Quartet Biennale and the conservatoires of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague. The DoelenKwartet provided the students with intensive guidance and transmitted their knowledge of and passion for contemporary repertoire to young string quartets and composition students with great enthusiasm.