Top international quartet splits up

Top international quartet splits up


norman lebrecht

January 27, 2014

The Quator Ysaÿe is breaking up after 30 years.

Trained by members of the Amadeus (Martin Lovett) and the LaSalle (Walter Levin) quartets and named after the great Belgian composer Eugène Ysaÿe, the French group have been among the world’s leading string quartets, playing both core and contemporary repertoire. They recorded for Decca, Philips, Aeon and their own label. They gave their final concert was in Paris on Friday.

Viola player Miguel de Silva, a founding member, told Le Monde: ‘I am very proud of what we did,’ listing the great cycles and world premieres of their epoch: « Je suis très fier de ce que l’on a fait : on a joué les 69 quatuors de Haydn, tout Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Schumann, sans parler des créations que nous avons suscitées – Boucourechliev, Dusapin, Tanguy, Krawczyk, Escaich, Cerha… »

The group’s final line-up was: Yovan Markovitch, Miguel Da Silva, Guillaume Sutre and Luc-Marie Aguéra.





  • Tully Potter says:

    I think da Silva is the sole remaining founder member. Sutre has been the leader for a very long time (previously they had a leader who aped all of Norbert Brainin’s mannerisms without quite having his genius). They have certainly kept up a good standard without – and this is just my personal view – quite equalling the very best Franco-Belgian groups.

    • ruben greenberg says:

      Mr. Tully Potter: Luc-Mari Aguéra had also been there since the start. I think, at least in recent times, They set new standards for a French quartet, becuase theirs was a full-time ensemble. Their predecessors were usually members of the Paris Opera Orchestra and did not devote themselves exclusively to quartet playing.

  • Sascha says:

    Sad to hear. They were a first rate quartet, that not only performed with gusto and well historically informed interpretations, but also knew when to take liberties with the score.

    You will be missed!