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The Esme Quartet was formed in 2016 and comprises four Korean musicians who were studying together in Cologne. In 2018 they won the Wigmore Hall quartet competition where they gave a breathtaking performance of Beethoven’s Op. 59/2.
Here they give us his first numbered quartet which, like the early piano trios, displays an incredibly assured sense of style. Bridge’s delightful miniatures date from 1904, and the achingly beautiful Webern piece from a year later. Mendelssohn’s profound final quartet was composed just a few months before he died, possibly in response to the death of his sister.
Praised for their warm sound, hyper-sensitive ensemble, and powerful stage presence, the Esmé Quartet was formed in 2016 at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne, Germany by four musicians that were long ago acquainted with each other as friends. They shared common interests and passions in music, the arts, and life. After working together for a trial period where they ‘tested the waters’ of playing together as a quartet, they were quickly awarded the first prize in the annual internal Hochschule Köln’s Chamber Music Competition. Since then, the members decided to work together on a permanent basis, and devoted their energy and passion into transforming their musical and interpretive goals into a working reality.
‘But it was the Esmé’s monumental Schubert Quartet in G, D. 887, that was the Michelin-starred meal.’
BRIDGE Novelletten, H. 44
BEETHOVEN Quartet in F, Op. 18 No. 1
WEBERN Langsamer Satz
MENDELSSOHN Quartet in F minor, Op. 80