Dublin Guitar Quartet
Presented in association with OMNI Foundation for the Performing Arts
Friday, November 10, 2023 | 7:30pm
Herbst TheatreVenue Information
About This Performance
A rare foursome devoted to contemporary music, from the celebratory to the cerebral. The Dublin Guitar Quartet has piloted an impressive list of premieres, new work and original arrangements from compositional giants—and works audiences clamor to hear—delivered with tremendous vitality and style. “A wonderful ensemble. The Dublin Guitar Quartet has carved a place for itself in the world of classical music.” —Philip Glass
BRYCE DESSNER: Aheym
PHILIP GLASS: String Quartet No. 2 Company; Piano Etudes No. 2, 9, 16, and 20; String Quartet No. 3 Mishima
RACHEL GRIMES: Book of Leaves
MARC MELLITS: Titan (selected movements)
ARVO PÄRT: Summa
Described as a "quartet with a difference" by the Irish Times, the Dublin Guitar Quartet is the first classical guitar quartet entirely devoted to new music. Since its formation at the Dublin Conservatory of Music and Drama, DGQ has worked to expand the limited repertoire by commissioning new works and adapting modern masterpieces from outside of the guitar repertoire.
With the help of eight and eleven-string guitars the quartet has created an original catalogue of arrangements by composers such Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Arvo Part and Gyorgy Ligeti. The DGQ's work has brought the attention of some of the world's leading composers. This includes an album release on Philip Glass's Orange Mountain Music label and a new 55-minute commission by Michael Gordon (NY). In April 2015, the quartet performed alongside the Grammy award-winning LA Guitar Quartet, Conspirare,and Texas Guitar Quartet in a premiere of How Little You Are for three guitar quartets and choir by Nico Muhly in Austin, Texas. In 2019 DGQ performed their own reduction of this work in a US tour in collaboration with vocal ensemble Roomful of Teeth. The quartet also premiered a commission by Chicago-based composer Marc Mellits in Syracuse, NY in March of 2016.
In 2010 the quartet were involved in a special performance of Repentance for cello, guitars and double bass by celebrated Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina. The composer was present as they joined the Russian cellist Ivan Monighetti in a concert in St. Peter's Church, Drogheda. The DGQ's recording of this work was released on the LCMS label in March 2012. In 2008, the quartet was honored to share the stage with legendary American composer Philip Glass in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dundalk. Their recording of these transcriptions reached No.8 on the US iTunes classical charts in 2014.
Other performance highlights include a four-city tour of Colombia and nine tours of North America. The DGQ have also performed at the prestigious chamber music venue, Wigmore Hall in London and the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. They have also performed in many of the leading venues in the US including The Philips Collection Washington, Celebrity Series Boston, Subculture, Symphony Space, Yale University, and the Lincoln Center in New York. In 2019 the quartet performed as one of the jury selected ensembles at Classical Next, Rotterdam.
The DGQ are developing the electric side of the guitar quartet repertoire with works like Nagoya Guitars and Electric Counterpoint by Steve Reich, along with the commission mentioned above for electric guitar quartet, Amplified, by Michael Gordon. This was premiered at the David Lang/Bang on a curated festival of new music at the National Concert Hall, Dublin in February 2015.