Juilliard String Quartet - Biography

Juilliard String Quartet © Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

Juilliard String Quartet

Areta Zhulla - violin

Ronald Copes - violin

Roger Tapping - viola

Astrid Schween - violoncello

With unparalleled artistry and enduring vigour, the Juilliard String Quartet continues to inspire audiences around the world. Founded in 1946 and hailed by the Boston Globe as “the most important American quartet in history,” the Juilliard draws on a deep and vital engagement to the classics, while embracing the mission of championing new works, a vibrant combination of the familiar and the daring. Each performance of the Juilliard Quartet is a unique experience, bringing together the four members’ profound understanding, total commitment, and unceasing curiosity in sharing the wonders of the string quartet literature.

​In the 2018-19 season, the Juilliard String Quartet has performed amongst others in Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai, London, Oslo, Athens, Vancouver, Toronto and New York, with many return engagements all over the USA. The season has also introduced newly commissioned string quartets by the composers Lembit Beecher, Jesse Jones and Richard Wernick. Furthermore in this season the quartet has enjoyed piano quintet collaborations with the celebrated Marc-André Hamelin.

After concerts at Amsterdam Biennale as well as the Vienna Musikverein in January 2020 the Juilliard String Quartet will perform again in Europe in the End of the year, amongst others in Oxford and again in Amsterdam. In 2020 the quartet will premiere two newly commissioned string quartets by the renowned composer Jörg Widmann with which they will also give a tour in 2021/22.

Having recently celebrated its 70th anniversary, the Juilliard String Quartet marked the past seasons moreover with return appearances in Seattle, Santa Barbara, Pasadena, Memphis, Raleigh, Houston, Amsterdam, Berlin, and Copenhagen. It continued its acclaimed annual performances in Detroit and Philadelphia, along with numerous concerts at home in New York City, including appearances at Lincoln Center and Town Hall.

Adding to its celebrated discography, the JSQ released a new album featuring the world premiere recording of Mario Davidovsky’s Fragments (2016), together with Beethoven Quartet Op. 95 and Bartók Quartet No. 1, which is available on the SONY label. Celebrating one of the great collaborative relationships in American music, Sony Classical’s reissue of the Juilliard Quartet’s landmark recordings of the first four Elliott Carter String Quartets together with the 2013 recording of the Carter Quartet No. 5 traces a remarkable period in the evolution of both the composer and the ensemble. The quartet’s recordings of the Bartók and Schoenberg Quartets, as well as those of Debussy, Ravel and Beethoven, have won Grammy Awards, and in 2011 the JSQ became the first classical music ensemble to receive a lifetime achievement award from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. In 2019 a recording of works by Beethoven, Bartok and Dvorak will be released.

Being devoted master teachers, the members of the Juilliard String Quartet offer classes and open rehearsals when on tour. The JSQ is string quartet in residence at Juilliard and its members are all sought-after teachers on the string and chamber music faculties. Each May, they host the five-day internationally recognized Juilliard String Quartet Seminar. During the summer, the JSQ works closely on string quartet repertoire with students at the Tanglewood Music Center.

Areta Zhulla joins the Juilliard Quartet as first violinist beginning the 2018-19 season.