Daedalus Quartet
The Daedalus Quartet

Min-Young Kim and Matilda Kaul, violins
Jessica Thompson
, viola
Thomas Kraines
, cello

Praised by The New Yorker as “a fresh and vital young participant in what is a golden age of American string quartets,” the Daedalus Quartet has established itself as a leader among the new generation of string ensembles. Since winning the top prize in the Banff International String Quartet Competition in 2001, the Daedalus Quartet has impressed critics and listeners alike with the security, technical finish, interpretive unity, and sheer gusto of its performances. The New York Times has praised the Daedalus Quartet’s “insightful and vibrant” Haydn, the “impressive intensity” of their Beethoven, their “luminous” Berg, and the “riveting focus” of their Dutilleux. The Washington Post in turn has acclaimed their performance of Mendelssohn for its “rockets of blistering virtuosity,” while the Houston Chronicle has described the “silvery beauty” of their Schubert and the “magic that hushed the audience” when they played Ravel, the Boston Globe the “finesse and fury” of their Shostakovich, the Toronto Globe and Mail the “thrilling revelation” of their Hindemith, and the Cincinnati Enquirer the “tremendous emotional power” of their Brahms.

Since its founding the Daedalus Quartet has performed in many of the world’s leading musical venues; in the United States and Canada these include Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center (Great Performers series), the Library of Congress, the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C., and Boston’s Gardner Museum, as well as on major series in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary, Winnipeg, and Vancouver. Abroad the ensemble has been heard in such famed locations as the Musikverein in Vienna, the Mozarteum in Salzburg, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Cité de la Musique in Paris, and in leading venues in Japan.

The Daedalus Quartet has won plaudits for its adventurous exploration of and commitment to contemporary music. Among the works the ensemble has premiered are Huck Hodge's The Topography of Desire, commissioned by the Fromm Foundation; Joan Tower’s White Water, commissioned by Chamber Music Monterey Bay; David Horne’s Flight from the Labyrinth, commissioned for the Quartet by the Caramoor Festival; Lawrence Dillon’s String Quartet No. 4, commissioned by the Thomas S. Kenan Institute for the Arts; and Fred Lerdahl’s Third String Quartet, commissioned by Chamber Music America, as well as Lerdahl's Chaconne, commissioned by New Music USA.

The Quartet has also collaborated with some of the world’s finest instrumentalists: these include pianists Marc-André Hamelin, Simone Dinnerstein, Awadagin Pratt, Joyce Yang, and Benjamin Hochman; clarinetists Paquito D’Rivera, Ricardo Morales, Romie deGuise-Langlois, and Alexander Fiterstein; jazz bassist John Patitucci; and violists Roger Tapping, Nokuthula Ngwenyama, and Donald Weilerstein.

To date the Quartet has forged associations with some of America’s leading classical music and educational institutions: Carnegie Hall, through its European Concert Hall Organization (ECHO) Rising Stars program; and Lincoln Center, which appointed the Daedalus Quartet as the Chamber Music Society Two (now the Bowers Program) quartet for 2005-07. The Daedalus Quartet has served as Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania since 2006. In 2007, the Quartet was awarded Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award. The Quartet won Chamber Music America’s Guarneri String Quartet Award, which funded a three-year residency in Suffolk County, Long Island from 2007-2010.

The quartet’s debut recording, music of Stravinsky, Sibelius, and Ravel, was released by Bridge Records in 2006, and was praised by Strad Magazine for the quartet's "exemplary intonation and balance." Other recordings the quartet has released include music of Haydn, Fred Lerdahl, Arlene Sierra, George Perle, and Ursula Mamlock (for Bridge Records), music of Joan Tower (for Naxos), and Debra Kaye (for Navona Records). In the past season the Quartet recorded a string quartet and oboe quintet (with oboist James Austin Smith) by Anna Weesner, Huck Hodge’s Topography of Desire, and Nathan Courtright’s On remembering, ceasing to be (with the Arcana New Music Ensemble).

Highlights of the 23/24 season include two premieres and the quartet’s first Bartok cycle. Daedalus will premiere Stewart Goodyear’s piano quintet, with the composer at the piano, at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and will also perform as part of Lyric Fest’s Christmas Cantata, in a new work by composer Benjamin Wenzelberg on poetry of Jeanne Minahan for Philadelphia’s Lyric Fest. At the University of Pennsylvania, the Quartet will embark on a multi-disciplinary investigation of the music of Bartok, featuring each of the six quartets contextualized in various ways.
The members of the Daedalus Quartet hold degrees from the Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Cleveland Institute, and Harvard University.
[March 2023]


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