Death of a great quartet cellist, 68

Death of a great quartet cellist, 68


norman lebrecht

March 29, 2018

Levon Chilingarian writes:

Cellist Philip De Groote (1949-2018), the rock on which the Chilingarian Quartet was founded, passed away peacefully last night. His supremely sensitive playing provided the ideal conversational foil for all who had the privilege of performing with him. The Chilingarian Quartet profoundly mourns his untimely death. I am personally deeply saddened by the loss of my long-time musical soulmate.

Born in Johannesburg, De Groote co-founded the quartet in 1971. He taught at the Royal College of Music and the University of Cape Town, retiring from the quartet in 2013.

Chilingirian String Quartet perform Mozart Quartet K589 First Movement, August 2012, Lake District Summer Music Festival from on Vimeo.


  • Step Parikian says:

    Terribly sad – he was an incredible musician.

  • Step Parikian says:

    And you might want to correct the spelling of Chilingirian.

  • Tessa, Piet, Hermina, so jammer om te hoor van Philip se afsterwe. Ons dink aan julle en herleef weer van vooraf die wonderlike ervarings wat ons met die de Groote familie gehad het oor die jare.

  • Ricardo says:

    Fantastic musician. Thank you and rest in peace.

  • Leon Enrique Bosch says:

    A good friend, colleague and fellow South African. Rest in Peace Philip.

  • rosemary hardy says:

    So very sorry to hear this, Levon. Much love

    • Fritz Curzon says:

      I’d like to echo your comment, Rosemary, if I may? The click of a shutter connected us all back then; the sad demise of Philip does now.

  • La Verita says:

    And so in death he joins his brother, the remarkable pianist Steven de Groote, who died 29 years ago, and is already sadly and unjustly forgotten.

  • Frank Sturgess says:

    Sad day…Wonderful musician and human! RIP

  • Bernie says:

    We were students together at the Royal College of Music in the late ‘60’s. We roomed at the Victorian League for Commonwealth Friendship in Bayswater. His after pub party piece was to grab someone’s violin and hold it like a cello and play. RIP.

  • Nicola Allen says:

    I am so sorry to hear of Philip’s passing. He and his wife, Jeanette, were great friends to me and my husband when we lived in Chislehurst.