Since its formation in 1972, the Brodsky Quartet has performed over 3000 concerts on the major stages of the world and has released more than 60 recordings. A natural curiosity and an insatiable desire to explore has propelled the group in a number of artistic directions and continues to ensure them not only a prominent presence on the international chamber music scene, but also a rich and varied musical existence. Their energy and craftsmanship has attracted numerous awards and accolades worldwide, while ongoing educational work provides a vehicle for passing on experience and staying in touch with the next generation.
Throughout their 40-year career, the Brodsky Quartet has enjoyed a busy international performing schedule, and has toured extensively throughout Australasia, North and South America, Asia, South Africa, and Europe, as well as performing at many of the UK’s major festivals and venues. The quartet is also regularly recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio. Over the years the Brodsky Quartet has undertaken numerous performances of the complete cycles of quartets by Schubert, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Britten, Schoenberg, Zemlinsky, Webern and Bartok. It is, however, the complete Shostakovich cycle that has now become synonymous with their name: their 2012 London performance of the cycle resulting in them taking the prestigious title of ‘Artist in Residence’ at London’s Kings Place.
The Brodsky Quartet also has a busy recording career, and 2012 marked the beginning of a new and exclusive relationship with Chandos Records. Releases on the label so far include Petits Fours,a celebratory album of ‘Encore’ pieces, arranged exclusively by the Quartet for their 40th anniversary; a Debussy compilation including the Quartet's long-awaited recording of the great Debussy Quartet; In the South featuring works by Verdi, Paganini, Wolf and Puccini; New World Quartets comprising works by Dvorak, Copland, Gershwin and Brubeck; and the first of two Brahms discs which includes the iconic Clarinet Quintet with collaborating partner, Michael Collins. Recent awards for recordings include the Diapason D'Or and the CHOC du Monde de la Musique for their recordings of string quartets by Britten, Beethoven and Janacek, and, for their outstanding contribution to innovation in programming, the Brodsky Quartet has received a Royal Philharmonic Society Award. They have taught at many international chamber music courses and held residencies in several music institutes, including the first such post at the University of Cambridge. They are currently International Fellows of Chamber Music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and have been awarded Honorary Doctorates at the University of Kent and University of Teesside.
The Quartet is named after the great Russian violinist Adolf Brodsky, dedicatee of Tchaikovsky's violin concerto and a passionate chamber musician.
Daniel Rowland plays a violin made by Lorenzo Storioni of Cremona in 1793; Ian Belton’s violin is by Gio. Paolo Maggini c.1615 and Paul Cassidy plays on La Delfina viola, c. 1720, courtesy of Sra. Delfina Entrecanales. Jacqueline Thomas plays a cello made by Thomas Perry in 1785.
Anne Sophie von Otter
Internationally acclaimed Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter has long been considered one of the finest singers of her generation. A lengthy and exclusive relationship with Deutsche Grammophon produced a wealth of recordings and numerous awards including an International Record Critics’ Award (recording artist of the year), a Grammy Award (best classical vocal performance) for Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn, and a Diapason d’Or for a recording of Swedish songs with her long-time accompanist, Bengt Forsberg. She collaborated with pop legend Elvis Costello on the disc, For the Stars and in October 2010 released her first recording with the Naïve label, Love Songs, a collaboration with renowned jazz pianist Brad Mehldau. This was followed by her 2012 disc, Sogno Barocco – a collection of Italian baroque arias, scenes and duets with Leonardo García-Alarcón and Cappella Mediterranea – which was nominated for a Grammy Award. Her fourth recording for Naïve, Douce France, is a double CD of mélodies and chansons (released in October 2013).
Anne Sofie von Otter earned an international reputation as an outstanding Octavian (Der Rosenkavalier) with performances at the Royal Opera House, Bayerische Staatsoper, Opéra national de Paris, and the Wiener Staatsoper. She also performed the role as part of a series of engagements with James Levine and The Metropolitan Opera, and in Japan under Carlos Kleiber (available on DVD). Other seminal opera recordings include Le nozze di Figaro under Levine, Idomeneo, La clemenza di Tito and Orfeo ed Euridice under John Eliot Gardiner, Handel’s Ariodante and Hercules under Marc Minkowski and Ariadne auf Naxos under Giuseppe Sinopoli.
Recent opera highlights have included Clytemnestre (Iphigenie en Aulide) in Pierre Audi’s production for De Nederlandse Opera conducted by Marc Minkowski (available on DVD), Geneviève (Pelléas et Mélisande) under Philippe Jordan for Opéra national de Paris (available on DVD), Countess Geschwitz (Lulu) at The Metropolitan Opera, conducted by Fabio Luisi and her role debut in Charpentier’s Médeé for Oper Frankfurt. She appeared in Giulio Cesare at the 2012 Salzburg Festival with an all-star cast including Cecilia Bartoli and Andreas Scholl. In the 2013/14 season she appears in Christoph Marthaler’s production of Les contes d’Hoffmann at Madrid’s Teatro Real, in Götterdämmerung at Deutsche Oper Berlin under Sir Simon Rattle and in The Rake’s Progress at Theater an der Wien under Michael Boder. The diversity of this ever-evolving repertoire has played a key role in sustaining her international reputation as an operatic force.
A busy concert schedule takes Anne Sofie von Otter to all corners of the globe. Recent highlights include appearances with the Berliner Philharmoniker under Sir Simon Rattle, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under David Robertson, the New York Philharmonic under Alan Gilbert, the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Daniele Gatti, Washington’s National Symphony Orchestra under Christoph Eschenbach and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra under Sakari Oramo. She performed Wesendonck Lieder with Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse under Marc Minkowski and with the hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt under Paavo Järvi as part of the Wagner bicentenary. In 2011 she appeared with Jonas Kaufmann and the Berliner Philharmoniker conducted by Claudio Abbado for a televised performance of Das Lied von der Erde on the one hundredth anniversary of Mahler’s death.