2022 Competitors

The ensembles selected to proceed to the Preliminary Stages of the 2022 Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition are:

Adelphi Quartet

Adelphi Quartet copyright Kaupo KikkasAdelphi Quartet

Maxime Michaluk (Belgium) violin
Esther Agusti Matabosch (Spain) violin
Marko Milenkovic (Serbia) viola
Nepomuk Braun (Germany) cello

Based in: Austria and Germany
Ensemble founded: January 2017
Current formation: January 2020
Average age: 29.25

The Adelphi Quartet was formed in 2017 and studied with Rainer Schmidt (Hagen Quartet) at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg; it has received invaluable support and guidance from Eberhard Feltz and Valentin Erben. In 2020 the Adelphi Quartet won First Prize in the Irene Steels-Wilsing Foundation Competition at the Heidelberg String Quartet Festival, and in 2021, Third Prize at the Paolo Borciani Competition in Italy. Concert highlights include recitals in Germany at the Hitzacker Summer Music Festival and Chamber Music Wiesbaden, and in Austria at the Mondsee Music Festival and the International Mozarteum Foundation. The quartet has given performances of Schubert's String Quintet with Valentin Erben of the Alban Berg Quartet at the Villa Musica in Germany and undertaken exchange programmes at McGill University in Montreal, and with the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London. This season they make their debut at Wigmore Hall, return to the Heidelberg String Quartet Festival and give recitals for the ‘Hindemith Days’ series in Frankfurt and ‘Les Voix Intimes’ String Quartet Festival in Belgium. The individual members have studied with, among others, Igor Ozim, Benjamin Schmid, Rainer Schmidt, Thomas Riebl, Lawrence Power, Heinrich Schiff and Clemens Hagen.

Affinity Quartet

Affinity Quartet copyright Sharon Gertner PhotographyAffinity Quartet

Josephine Chung (Australia) violin
Nicholas Waters (Australia) violin
Ruby Shirres (Australia) viola
Mee Na Lojewski (Australia) cello

Based in: Australia
Ensemble founded: January 2015
Current formation: June 2021
Average age: 27.755

Australia’s Affinity Quartet was formed in 2015; since then, the ensemble has benefited from training at IMS Prussia Cove, the Young Talents Residency of the Amsterdam String Quartet Biennale, as well as private tuition with members of the Belcea, Brodsky, Doric and Kuss Quartets, Professors Heime Müller, Rainer Schmidt and Oliver Wille, and Dr Robin Wilson. The quartet’s touring schedule between 2016-20 included acclaimed performances at the Amsterdam String Quartet Biennale, ‘Les Voix Intimes’ String Quartet Festival in Belgium, the Fondazione Giorgio Cini in Venice, the Mirabell Palace in Salzburg, and in the UK at St Martin in the Fields, Southbank Centre, City Music Society, and Prussia Cove International Musicians Seminar. The Affinity Quartet was also invited as string quartet in residence at the 2021 Australian Festival of Chamber Music. The Australian National Academy of Music has been formative for Affinity Quartet: three members are alumni, one is a current student and the ensemble also won ANAM’s 2015 Chamber Music Competition. The Affinity Quartet champions works by Australian and contemporary composers as well as works from the classical canon, including the complete string quartets of Janáček, Haas, Britten and Panufnik. In 2022 the quartet is commissioning new work from Australian composers and will perform in Melbourne Recital Centre’s Local Heroes series.

Barbican Quartet

Barbican Quartet copyright Andrej GrilcBarbican Quartet

Amarins Wierdsma (The Netherlands) violin
James Dong (Australia) violin
Christoph Slenczka (Germany) viola
Yoanna Prodanova (Bulgaria) cello

Based in: UK
Ensemble founded: September 2014
Current formation: October 2020
Average age: 29.5

First Prize winners of the 2019 Joseph Joachim International Chamber Music Competition as well as the 2018 St Martin in the Fields Chamber Music Competition, the Barbican Quartet is quickly establishing itself internationally. Based in London, the quartet made its Wigmore Hall début in 2017 thanks to the Maisie Lewis Award, and was a 2020 St John’s Smith Square Young Artist and a 2016 Park Lane Group artist. In 2018 the Royal Philharmonic Society awarded them the Albert and Eugenie Frost Prize. The Barbican Quartet has appeared at festivals such as Vibrate! Quartets at Bordeaux, Zeist Music Days in the Netherlands, the McGill International String Quartet Academy, the Peasmarsh Festival, IMS Prussia Cove and Aldeburgh in the UK. Their performances have been broadcast on NPO Radio 4 and BBC Radio 3. The Barbican Quartet currently studies with Günter Pichler at the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid and with the Quatuor Ebène in Munich. Among the quartet’s mentors are the Belcea Quartet, Alasdair Tait, András Keller, David Waterman, Ferenc Rados and Rita Wagner. The musicians are very grateful to the Dutch Instrument Foundation for providing Amarins' Guadagnini violin and the Canimex Group (Canada) for providing Yoanna’s Gagliano cello.

Callisto Quartet

Callisto Quartet copyright Titilayo AyangadeCallisto Quartet

Paul Aguilar (USA) violin
Rachel Aguilar (USA) violin
Eva Kennedy (USA) viola
Hannah Moses (USA) cello

Based in: USA
Ensemble founded: August 2016
Current formation: August 2016
Average age: 26

Since the Callisto Quartet’s formation in 2016 at the Cleveland Institute of Music, the ensemble has won the Grand Prize at the 2018 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, Second Prize at the 2019 Banff International String Quartet Competition, and prizes from the Bordeaux (2019), Melbourne (2018), and Wigmore Hall (2018) competitions. The quartet is currently Quartet in Residence at Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts and has also held residencies at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music and the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid, Spain. The quartet has participated and performed in many renowned chamber music festivals in the USA, Canada and Europe, including the Jeunesses Musicales International Chamber Music Campus in Weikersheim, Germany as part of their prize from the Wigmore Hall Competition. The Callisto Quartet is committed to continually broadening their musical horizons by drawing inspiration from a plethora of mentors and musical approaches. They also believe strongly in passing along their musical insights to younger students and sharing their music in their communities. To this end they have served as faculty and given masterclasses at numerous schools and festivals as well as performing in schools, retirement homes, museums and other community centres.

Leonkoro Quartet

Leonkoro Quartet copyright Nikolaj LundLeonkoro Quartet

Jonathan Schwarz (Germany) violin
Amelie Wallner (Germany) violin
Mayu Konoe (Netherlands/Japan) viola
Lukas Schwarz (Germany) cello

Based in: Germany
Ensemble founded: February 2019
Current formation: June 2020
Average age: 24

The Leonkoro Quartet was founded in 2019 and is based in Berlin. The quartet has studied with the Artemis Quartet at the University of the Arts Berlin since its formation, and subsequently at the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid with Günter Pichler. In addition, they have received tuition from teachers such as Heime Müller, Alfred Brendel, Rainer Schmidt, Oliver Wille, and Luc-Marie Aguera. The quartet received its first awards in the summer of 2019 at the International Chamber Music Competition at the Virtuoso & Belcanto Festival in Italy, where they were awarded the First Prize and the Adolfo Betti Award for the best string quartet. In 2020 they were invited by the Mozartfest Würzburg to work with Reinhard Goebel at the MozartLab. In 2021, despite the global pandemic, in addition to winning the First Prize at the Alice Samter Chamber Music Competition and the Second Prize at the Sound & Explanation Competition organised by the Association of Arts and Culture of the German Economy, they received the Second Prize and the coveted Audience Prize at the Paolo Borciani International String Quartet Competition in Italy. During the 2021-2022 season, the Leonkoro Quartet will be performing at chamber music series and festivals throughout Germany.

Myriade Quartet

Myriade QuartetMyriade Quartet

Julia Mirzoev (Canada) violin
Russell Iceberg (USA) violin
Danielle Greene (Canada) viola
Braden McConnell (USA) cello

Based in: Canada
Ensemble founded: March 2020
Current formation: September 2021
Average age: 25.75

The Myriade Quartet is currently based in Montréal, Québec, and is under the tutelage of Professor André Roy of the McGill Schulich School of Music. Members of the Myriade Quartet have recently been selected to participate in the Trondheim International String Quartet Competition, as well as being selected as a senior string quartet for the McGill International String Quartet Academy. In 2020, the quartet was selected as artists in residence at the Prince Edward County Music Festival and provided lecture-recitals, with further engagements following in 2022. Other future engagements include performances for Jeunesses Musicales Canada, and at the Chapelle Historique de Bon Pasteur.

Pelia Quartet

Pelia QuartetPelia Quartet

Heejeon Ahn (South Korea) violin
Delphine Skene (Canada) violin
Sung Jin Lee (South Korea) viola
Nathan Cottrell (USA) cello

Based in: USA
Ensemble founded: September 2019
Current formation: September 2021
Average age: 30.5

Formed in September 2019, the Pelia String Quartet is composed of doctoral students from the Music Department at Stony Brook University. The highlight of the 2020-2021 season was being chosen as the resident string quartet for the State University of New York (SUNY) Artist Residency. The year-long residency focused on enriching and mentoring young musicians. Members of the Pelia String Quartet taught private lessons, coached chamber ensembles, and created a curriculum of lectures and demonstrations. The quartet specifically designed the curriculum to teach aspects of playing in a string quartet and how to work together in a chamber ensemble. The culmination of the SUNY residency was a final concert and Q & A session which was broadcast via the internet to hundreds of students at several schools and youth orchestras. Since its inception, the Pelia String Quartet has been studying at the Emerson String Quartet Institute at Stony Brook University where the ensemble is coached by the Emerson String Quartet and David Finckel.

Quatuor Tchalik

Quatuor Tchalik © Steve Murez 2019Quatuor Tchalik

Gabriel Tchalik (France) violin
Louise Tchalik (France) violin
Sarah Tchalik (France) viola
Marc Tchalik (France) cello

Based in: France
Ensemble founded: July 2013
Current formation: July 2013
Average age: 28.25

The Tchalik Quartet is notable for being made up of four brothers and sisters. Born into a musical family with Russian origins, the members of the quartet have played together from a very early age. In February 2018, the Tchalik Quartet won the 1st Prize and the Special Prize for the best interpretation of a Mozart quartet at the International Mozart Competition in Salzburg. Besides their main teacher Günter Pichler, the quartet has studied with many internationally renowned musicians. This season the quartet has performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées and will perform at the Philharmonie de Paris during the Quartet Biennale. Later in 2022 the quartet will play at the Mozarteum University Salzburg and make its debut at the Philharmonie in Cologne. The ensemble’s first three CDs dedicated to Thierry Escaich, Reynaldo Hahn and Camille Saint-Saëns were very well received; the quartet’s next CD will be dedicated to the Russian composer Boris Tishchenko. In 2022 they will also present an original concert which brings together the words of Proust and the music of Hahn. The instruments played by the members of the quartet are exclusively made for them by violin maker Philippe Mitéran and bow-maker Konstantin Cheptitski.

Risus Quartet

Risus QuartetRisus Quartet

Haeni Lee (South Korea) violin
Jieun Yoo (South Korea) violin
Mary Chang (USA) viola
Bobae Lee (South Korea) cello

Based in: USA
Ensemble founded: May 2020
Current formation: May 2020
Average age: 28.5

The Risus Quartet was founded in 2020 by four young musicians living in South Korea. ‘Risus’ means ‘laughter’ in Latin, and the main aim of the quartet is to bring joy to their audiences. The quartet’s members all graduated from Seoul National University with a firm commitment to chamber music. After graduating, they moved to study in the USA to expand their experiences as artists and to explore the world of string quartets further. Grand Prize and Gold Medal winners at the 2021 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, the Risus Quartet is currently the Young Professional String Quartet in Residence at the Butler School of Music at the University of Texas in Austin. The quartet’s 2021-22 season includes performances at the Jeju International Music Festival, Gum Nanse Music Centre, Seocho-gu Chamber Music Festival, Tongui-dong Classic, and the Samick Cultural Foundation with support from the Busan Classical Development Council, as well as the winner’s tour for the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. The quartet likes to keep its curiosity alive by performing music of various genres, from Baroque to new commissions.

Ulysses Quartet

Ulysses Quartet copyright Matthew HollerUlysses Quartet

Christina Bouey (Canada/USA) violin
Rhiannon Banerdt (USA) violin
Colin Brookes (USA/UK) viola
Grace Ho (USA/Taiwan) cello

Based in: USA
Ensemble founded: August 2015
Current formation: August 2015
Average age: 33

Hailing from Canada, the United States and Taiwan, the Ulysses Quartet has performed in prestigious halls such as Alice Tully Hall, Jordan Hall, and the Taiwan National Recital Hall. They won the Grand Prize at the 2016 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, the 2017 American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, Second Prize at the 2017 Osaka International Chamber Music Competition and First Prize in the 2018 Schoenfeld International String Competition. At the Juilliard School of Music in New York, the quartet holds the Lisa Arnhold Fellowship and is the school’s Graduate Resident String Quartet. Highlights of the 2021-22 season include an appearance with the acclaimed Emerson Quartet at Naumburg Orchestral Concerts, as well as performances for the Westchester Chamber Music Society, Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music, the Bilbao Philharmonic Society, the Salamanca Chamber Music and Soloists Society, and at the Picasso Museum in Málaga, the Cemal Reşit Rey Concert Hall in Istanbul and the Teatro Mayor in Bogotá. The quartet performs on instruments on loan from the Juilliard School and the Maestro Foundation.

Vivace Quartet

Vivace QuartetVivace Quartet

Tianlong Mai (China) violin
Wei Yu (China) violin
Jiasong Bai (China) viola
Ziru Niu (China) cello

Based in: China
Ensemble founded: October 2015
Current formation: October 2015
Average age: 26.25

The Vivace Quartet was founded in 2015 and is based in Beijing. All four members graduated from the Central Conservatory of Music, and it is the youngest professional quartet in China. The quartet studies with violinist Professor Gefang Yang, who was the first violin of the Alexander String Quartet. In 2021, the Vivace Quartet won the Second Prize at the Third Ysaÿe International Music Competition in Belgium. The quartet is active on the concert circuit and has performed in venues all over China, such as the Shanghai Poly Grand Theatre, the Tianjin Concert Hall, the Qingdao Grand Theatre, the GIBO Grand Theatre, the Changsha Concert Hall, the National Library Art Centre and the Suzhou Culture and Art Centre.