Chilingirian Quartet

Chilingirian Quartet

The Chilingirian Quartet is one of the world’s most celebrated and widely-traveled ensembles, renowned for its thrilling interpretations of the great quartets — and commanding performances of the contemporary repertoire.

The Quartet is composed of Levon Chilingirian (violin), Stephen Orton (cello), Ronald Birks (violin), and Susie Mészáros (viola) — highly accomplished musicians who blend four distinct voices into a single extraordinary sound. It is a sound that critics around the world have heralded as “balanced,” “passionate,” “warm,” “subtle,” and “dynamic.”

London has always been a meeting-point for the world’s musicians, and it was in London in 1971 that four prizewinning musicians met and decided to dedicate themselves to chamber music. Word of the new quartet spread rapidly, and within a short time the Chilingirian Quartet was claimed by London’s critics to be an ensemble that would have a major impact on the world of the string quartet.

BBC and World Service broadcasts of the Chilingirian Quartet were soon followed by invitations to the Edinburgh, Aldeburgh, and Bath festivals, and to the most important cities throughout Europe.

In 1976, a triumphant debut in New York made the Chilingirians a sought-after group throughout the United States. The Quartet has since made over 15 coast-to-coast tours of the USA and Canada. Extensive tours of Australia, New Zealand, South America, Africa, and the Far East make the Quartet equally well known around the world.

In 1988, the group became the first-ever Quartet-in-Residence at the Royal College of Music, where it continues to offer master classes to many of the world’s most promising young musicians.

The Quartet has built an extensive and critically-acclaimed discography of works by Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Bartok, Dvorak, and other major composers. And, it released groundbreaking recordings of masterworks by contemporary composers such as Michael Tippett, John Tavener, Hugh Wood, and Michael Berkeley.

The Chilingirians have also appeared extensively on TV and radio programs around the world, including an ongoing series of broadcasts for the BBC.

Now in its fourth decade, the Chilingirian Quartet continues to tour, record, and teach, amassing one of the music world’s most impressive resumés.