The Ligeti Quartet is the newest resident ensemble to join the Faculty and is the first holder of the Cambridge Chamber Music Residency. The quartet works in particular with graduate composers but it also performs, coaches and creates events for performers. They will be working closely with Richard Causton, Reader in Composition; John Hopkins, composer and Director of Studies at Homerton; and Maggie Faultless, Director of Performance at the Faculty of Music.
The quartet said this about their appointment:
‘We are delighted to be the inaugural ensemble for the Cambridge Chamber Music Residency. As a quartet dedicated to the performance of modern and contemporary music, and interested in collaborative and innovative projects, we believe we will make a strong and lasting contribution to music at Cambridge. The residency will be a tremendous opportunity for us to engage with a vibrant community of composers, musicologists, and other performers, at the Faculty of Music and in Homerton College.’
Formed in 2010, the Ligeti Quartet is dedicated to performing modern and contemporary music, commissioning new works, and engaging a diverse audience. Comprising graduates from the Royal Academy of Music, the Royal College of Music and the University of Oxford, the quartet has established a reputation as leading exponents of new music, with engagements taking them throughout the UK and abroad. They have performed at the Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room, Barbican Hall, Kings Place, and international festivals including the Pablo Casals Festival (France), Incubate Festival (Netherlands), Musik 21 Nachwuchsfestival (Germany) and 'HellHot!' New Music Festival (Hong Kong). They have also performed in an IMAX Theatre, museums, galleries, theatres, pubs, a fishing boat, and on ‘icebergs’ outside the Shell headquarters in London as part of a Greenpeace campaign.
The quartet were selected for the St John’s Smith Square Young Artists Scheme 2015–16, for which they are performing in three concerts and undertaking education and community outreach work. They are also resident quartet at the University of Sheffield for 2015–17, where they are performing and leading composition workshops regularly.
The Ligeti Quartet regularly work with artists outside classical music; they have performed with musicians such as Wadada Leo Smith, Shabaka Hutchings, Laura Jurd and You Are Wolf. They have gained a reputation for an innovative approach to new music, through work with performance artists, video, actors and DJs. They also maintain a particular interest in education, regularly leading workshops and recording pieces by student composers.
The Ligeti Quartet are grateful to have received commissioning grants from the BrittenPears Foundation, Hinrichsen Foundation, and the RVW Trust. They have also been generously supported by Help Musicians UK, the Tillett Trust, and the Zetland Foundation to further their training with the European Chamber Music Academy, under the tutelage of Hatto Beyerle of the Alban Berg Quartet. They have had coaching with members of the Arditti, Chilingirian, Lindsay and Kronos Quartets. In April 2016 they played for the Kronos Quartet’s ‘Creating a New Repertoire’ programme at Carnegie Hall.