Live from Wigmore Hall - 29 December 2008
Described as “quite exceptional” (Gramophone) and a group that is “poetic, charismatic and virtuosic” (Sunday Telegraph), the Elias String Quartet is considered one of the most fresh and exciting quartets of their generation.
As their career continues to grow with extraordinary momentum, Wigmore Hall Live is proud to release this live recital recording that captures the young quartet’s fervent passion and infectious enthusiasm for the music of Mendelssohn, Mozart and Schubert.
WHLive0028 opens with Schubert’s great unfinished work, the Quartettsatz in C minor, considered to be the forerunner of the late great string quartets for which Schubert is best remembered. This is followed by possibly the most famous of Mozart’s string quartets, the ‘'Dissonance’ quartet, dedicated to Joseph Haydn.
The programme ends with string quartets by Felix Mendelssohn - the composer they hold most dear. With 2009 being Mendelssohn’s bicentenary year, the Elias String Quartet chose these works in order to showcase a side of the composer’s genius which they believe is highly underrated.
After winning all the Royal Northern College of Music quartet awards, they spent a year studying with the Alban Berg Quartet in Cologne. They have since received many honours at major international competitions, including multiple awards at the 2003 London International String Quartet Competition.
Donald Grant plays the violin that used to belong to their ‘founding father’, Christopher Rowland, who died in 2007.
Press acclaim for the Elias String Quartet at Wigmore Hall
“A heaven-storming performance … Big things lie ahead of them” The Strad
“four powerful personalities at work … The Elias are a quite exceptional quartet” Gramophone
“The emotional chemistry here was manifestly unusual … pure magic” The Sunday Telegraph
“the players more than deserved the standing ovation from an audience among whose numbers even the hardened professionals and most impassive critics were moved and impressed” The Independent