Long Live String Quartets!

The Banff International String Quartet Competition (BISQC) has just wrapped up.  The competition’s director (SweetWater alumni Barry Shiffman) made a wonderful comment about the level of each of the competing quartets for this year’s event – that each of them were of the caliber to succeed as professional string quartets. 


There are more and more terrific string quartets on the scene these days.  It makes this writer happy!  Over the years of the SweetWater Festival, we have seen the performance of many of the great quartets ever written.  For those who have been with us, take a look at this list and see if you have memories on the following:


Haydn String Quartet Opus 77, No. 2 (from year 1)

Ligeti String Quartet No. 1

Beethoven Opus 131 (performed by the St. Lawrence Quartet)

Beethoven Opus 135

Beethoven Opus 74

Schnittke No. 3

Dvorak Cypresses


I have very dear memories of these performances (either as a performer or listener).  I hope you do as well!  This year, we will see a performance of Erwin Schulhoff’s Five Pieces for String Quartet as well as a performance of Haydn’s Opus 76, No. 2, entitled the Fifths quartet. 


Long live the string quartet!








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