Meticulously balanced, textures are clear, the lines long and well shaped. (The Independent)

The Zurich-based Gringolts Quartet was founded in 2008 at Schloss Elmau, born from mutual friendships and chamber music partnerships that began at the International Musicians Seminar in Prussia Cove, England.

Ilya Gringolts, winner of the 1998 International Violin Competition "Premio Paganini", has long been a highly sought after chamber musician. Second violinist Anahit Kurtikyan and cellist Claudius Herrmann have toured concert halls around the world as members of the Amati Quartet and violist Silvia Simionescu is active as a member of the Menuhin Festival Piano quartet.

The Quartet, which has enjoyed two residencies at Schlos Elmau in recent years, have enjoyed great acclaim for their recent Mendelssohn, Beethoven, and Shostakovich programmes. In the 2011/2012 season the quartet will perform in Switzerland, Germany, as well as other European countries. In autumn 2011, Onyx Classics released the quartet’s first CD featuring Robert Schumann’s three string quartets as well as his piano quintet with Peter Laul.

Ilya Gringolts

Winner of the 1998 International Violin Competition “Premio Paganini”, Ilya Gringolts was also awarded two special prizes for the youngest ever competitor to be placed in the final and the best interpreter of Paganini’s Caprices. Ilya has soloed with such esteemed orchestras as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the National Symphony of Washington, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the London Symphony, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, the German Symphony Orchestra Berlin, the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and the Israel Philharmonic among others. He also can be heard in numerous recitals each season during which he often performs music from the baroque repertoire. His CD releases on BIS, Deutsche Grammophon and Hyperion label have received enthusiastic reviews.

Anahit Kurtikyan

Armenian violinist Anahit Kurtikyan pursued her studies in Switzerland with renowned Tibor Varga. She has won numerous national competitions. As a member of Amati Quartet and Zurich Opera Orchestra she has given concerts throughout Europe, the United States and Japan. Her orchestral experience includes working with the Australian Chamber Orchestra in 2000 with which she toured Australia extensively. An avid chamber musician, her partners include such names as Rudolph Buchbinder, Steven Isserlis, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, David Geringas, Diemut Poppen, Eduard Brunner, Paul Meyer and many others. Since 2001 Ms.Kurtikyan has been leading the second violin section with the Zurich Opera Orchestra with which she has played over 80 productions, including those on period instruments. Anahit Kurtikyan plays a 1733 violin by Camillo Camilli from Mantua.

Silvia Simionescu

A native of Romania, Silvia Simionescu has won a number of international competitions, including First Prize at the Brescia International Competition, First Prize at the Forum musical de Normandie and First Prize at the Osaka International Chamber Music Competition (as a member of Trio Ligeti). She has been a member of the ensemble Musique Oblique since 1996 and the violist of the Menuhin Festival Piano Quartet since 1999. She has had the opportunity to enjoy chamber collaborations with great artists such as Joshua Bell, Carolin Widmann, Charles Neidich, Alberto Lysy, Rafael Oleg, Bruno Giurana, and Anthony Marwood. CD recordings of works by Françaix, Reger, Dohnany, Schumann, Fauré, Franck, Chausson have been released on the Ars, Leman Calssics, Arion, and Alpheé labels. Since 2004, she has been a Professor on the faculty of Music Academy Basel teaching viola and chamber music.

Claudius Herrmann

Claudius Herrmann received his formal training at the Musikhochschule Lübeck as a student of Professor David Geringas. He is a principal cellist with the Orchestra of Zurich Opera and has worked with such conductors as Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Sir Georg Solti, Christoph von Dohnányi, Riccardo Chailly, Bernhard Haitink and Franz Welser-Möst. He was a member of the esteemed Amati Quartet for 15 years and has performed in Wiener Musikverein, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, The Wigmore Hall, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Kölner Philharmonie, Konzerthaus Berlin and The Carnegie Hall to name just a few. As a soloist he has featured with Hamburger Symphoniker, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, Moscow as well as the Zurich Opera Orchestra among others.
Claudius Herrmann can be heard on a selection of CDs, many of which have won prizes internationally. He plays a cello by Giovanni Paolo Maggini (ca. 1600) on loan to him from the Maggini Foundation Langenthal.

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