"Necessity is the mother of invention." - Frank Zappa

Armida Quartet

Martin Funda Violin
Johanna Staemmler Violin
Teresa Schwamm Viola
Peter-Philipp Staemmler Cello

....the confidence and accuracy they bring to their performances make this another enticing instalment
in their continuing quartet cycle (Vol. IV) Gramophone March 2022
Winning the ARD International Competition in 2012 (also sweeping all other prizes including the
audience prize) propelled the Armida Quartet on to the international concert platform. After concerts
and radio recordings as BBC New Generation Artists (2014-16) and subsequently as ECHO Rising
Stars (2016/17), the musicians have established themselves as regular guests in the best-known
chamber music halls in Europe, Asia, and the USA.

In addition to regular appearances at European
festivals such as the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and the Rheingau Musik Festival, the
quartet has enjoyed great success at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Berlin Philharmonie, and
London‘s Wigmore Hall, among others.
Acclaimed for their musical unity, which is evident in their fine-tuned sound and timing as well as
their shared breaths, the musicians also emphasise their commitment to quartet playing with their
choice of ensemble name: Armida refers to an opera by the composer Joseph Haydn, who is considered
the „father of the string quartet“. They studied with former members of the Artemis Quartet
and with Rainer Schmidt (Hagen Quartet); they owe further important impulses to Reinhard Goebel,
Alfred Brendel, Marek Janowski, and Tabea Zimmermann.
Highlights of the 2021/22 season include the world premiere of Brett Dean‘s Madame ma bonne
soeur for quartet and mezzo-soprano with singer Lotte Betts-Dean at the Festspielherbst Mecklenburg-
Vorpommern. As this year‘s artistic director, the Armida Quartet will also be involved in other
concerts during the festival season there, including collaborations with Kit Armstrong, Benjamin
Appl, Pauline Sachse, Eckart Runge, Brett Dean, and Johannes Fischer. The ensemble will also
perform at the Schubertiade Hohenems and the Thüringer Bachwochen, as well as at the Alte Oper
Frankfurt, Konzerthaus Berlin and Queens Hall Edinburgh.

The Armida Quartet places a special focus on the works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The third
album of the on-going complete recordings of his string quartets for CAvi Records was praised
as „musically ravishing and sonically (...) exemplary“ and described as ground-breaking for Mozart
interpretation in the 21st century (Klassik Heute 1/2021). Fono Forum recently praised the
fine nuances in sound, dynamics and articulation, saying the recording (Vol IV) set new standards
(March 2022).

The ensemble pursues its passion for Mozart, among other things, in its own concert
series „Mozart Exploded,“ in which each of the composer‘s string quartets are combined with
masterpieces of contemporary music and occasionally presented in experimental concert formats
in Berlin. The series has already been enthusiastically received in New York as well. In addition, the
young musicians have cooperated with G. Henle Verlag, for whom they act as musical advisors for the
new Urtext edition of the Mozart quartets, including their own fingerings and bowings made available
for the associated Henle Library App. In doing so, the quartet is not only at the forefront of the latest
technological developments, but also advocates for closer collaboration between performing artists
and musicologists.

Along with the four albums of Mozart string quartets already released, the quartet‘s discography
also includes their debut CD with works by Béla Bartók, György Ligeti, and György Kurtág (2013),
which was included in the German Record Prize‘s Best List. A recording with works by Beethoven
and Shostakovich was also released (2016), followed in 2017 by Fuga Magna with works by Scarlatti,
Bach, Goldberg, Mozart, and Beethoven.

All CDs are released on the CAvi-music label. The quartet
has also participated in various compilations of contemporary works by Samy Moussa, Ursula Mamlok,
Birke J. Bertelsmeier, and Milica Djordjevi´c, among others.

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