Doric String Quartet

Doric String Quartet

The Doric String Quartet has firmly established itself as the leading British string quartet of its generation, receiving enthusiastic responses from audiences and critics across the globe. Selected for representation by YCAT in 2006, the Quartet went on to win several prizes including 1st prize at the 2008 Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in Japan, 2nd prize at the Premio Paolo Borciani International String Quartet Competition in Italy and the Ensemble Prize at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in Germany.

In 2009 the Doric String Quartet’s first CD was released to critical acclaim on the Wigmore Live label and was chosen as Editor’s Choice in Gramophone. Since 2010 the Quartet has recorded exclusively for Chandos Records. The first CD, the complete Korngold String Quartets, was featured as one of the 2010 Critic’s Choice discs in Gramophone and was followed by a CD of the Walton String Quartets which was nominated for a 2011 Gramophone Award. The Quartet’s release of the Schumann String Quartets was named CD of the Month in both Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine and was shortlisted for a 2012 Gramophone Award. Their most recent releases of Haydn’s Op 20 Quartets and Quartets by Janáček and Martinů have both gathered enthusiastic reviews across the board, with the Haydn disc being named Editor’s Choice by Gramophone and shortlisted for a 2015 Gramophone Award.

Johnston, Guy


Guy Johnston is one of the most exciting and versatile British cellists of his generation. Born into a musical family, Guy joined his brothers in the worldrenowned choir of King’s College, Cambridge, where he recorded the famous carol Once in Royal David’s City, under Stephen Cleobury. He went on to achieve important early successes through the BBC Young Musician of the Year title, the Guilhemina Suggia Gift, the Shell London Symphony Orchestra Gerald MacDonald Award and receiving a Classical Brit Award at the Royal Albert Hall. His mentors have included Steven Doane, Ralph Kirshbaum, Bernard Greenhouse, Steven Isserlis and David Waterman.

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Carducci String Quartet

Carducci String Quartet

Described by The Strad as presenting “a masterclass in unanimity of musical purpose, in which severity could melt seamlessly into charm, and drama into geniality″, the Carducci Quartet is recognised as one of today’s most successful string quartets. Performing over 90 concerts worldwide each year the quartet also run their own recording label Carducci Classics; an annual festival in Highnam, Gloucester; and in September 2014, curated their first Carducci Festival in Castagneto-Carducci: the town from which they took their name.

JACK Quartet

JACK Quartet

Deemed "superheroes of the new music world" (Boston Globe), the JACK Quartet is "the go-to quartet for contemporary music, tying impeccable musicianship to intellectual ferocity and a take-no-prisoners sense of commitment." (Washington Post) "They are a musical vehicle of choice to the next great composers who walk among us." (Toronto Star).


Comprising violinists Christopher Otto and Austin Wulliman, violist John Pickford Richards, and cellist Jay Campbell, JACK is focused on new work, leading them to collaborate with composers John Luther Adams, Chaya Czernowin, Simon Steen-Andersen, Caroline Shaw, Helmut Lachenmann, Steve Reich, Matthias Pintscher, and John Zorn. Upcoming and recent premieres include works by Derek Bermel, Cenk Ergün, Roger Reynolds, Toby Twining, and Georg Friedrich Haas.

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Bracing Change (new chamber works by Simon Holt, Donnacha Dennehy & Anthony Gilbert)

Bracing Change
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JACK String Quartet
Carducci String Quartet
Guy Johnston cello

Doric Quartet

John Gilhooly OBE - Wigmore Hall Director writes .. 'Renewing the chamber music repertoire is central to the co-commissioning partnership between Wigmore Hall, The Radcliffe Trust and NMC Recordings. We are delighted to support Simon Holt’s 3rd Quartet with the JACK Quartet, Donnacha Dennehy’s The weather of it with the Doric String Quartet and Anthony Gilbert’s Haven of Mysteries with the Carducci String Quartet and Guy Johnston. We are very pleased to support some of the finest musicians of their generation, achieving the highest standards of their interpretations in modern compositions. I have no doubt that this recording will be praised for its vitality, freshness and the expressive power of new music. Wigmore Hall’s wholehearted commitment to continue building the chamber music repertoire is central to this project, and we look forward to further recordings yet to be released in this series.'

Simon Holt, Donnacha Dennehy and Anthony Gilbert, the composers featured on this inaugural ‘Bracing Change’ album of new string commissions, are as contrasting in their responses to it as they are individual in character across their musical output. Together, their new works – two quartets and a quintet – are a reminder that the medium has thrived for some 250 years not merely by adapting to change, but by inspiring all sorts of new music at its pioneering edge.


'Totally compelling ... intriguing, vivid new music’ The Guardian ★★★★

'Exceptional' BBC Radio 3 'Record Review'

‘Edgy and unpredictable’ Gramophone

'Throughout this compelling disc, recorded sound is crisp and clean, and charged with a thrilling immediacy.' The Strad

Bracing Change rekindles the string quartet (and quintet) as a site of risk and innovation.’ BBC Music Magazine


This Bracing Change series is a co-commissioning partnership between The Radcliffe Trust, Wigmore Hall and NMC Recordings.


NMC is grateful to the following for their generous support of this recording:

Hargreaves and Ball Trust

The Radcliffe Trust

The Barbara Whatmore Charitable Trust, whose founder was closely associated with the Radcliffe Trust during her lifetime.


3rd Quartet was recorded 19 January 2015, The weather of it was recorded 15 July 2016 and Haven of Mysteries was recorded 14 June 2015. All premiere performances were recorded live at Wigmore Hall, London.

STEVE PORTNOI Recording Engineer & Producer

Chester Music
G. Shirmer
Catalogue number:
NMC D216
Release Date:
19 May 2017