Muir String Quartet

The Muir String Quartet, in residence at BU since 1983, has long been acknowledged as one of the world’s most powerful and insightful ensembles, distinguishing itself among audiences and critics with its “exhilarating involvement” (Boston Globe), “impeccable voicing and intonation” (San Francisco Examiner), and “unbridled musicality” (American Record Guide).

Winner of the 1981 Naumburg Chamber Music Award and 1980 Evian International String Quartet Competition, the Muir String Quartet first appeared on the scene in 1980, and was greeted with rave reviews and an extensive feature in The New Yorker. The quartet was also featured on the internationally acclaimed PBS broadcast In Performance at the White House for President and Mrs. Reagan. Formed in 1979 following graduation from the Curtis Institute of Music, the Muir String Quartet’s principal chamber music teachers were Felix Galimir and members of the Guarneri and Budapeset Quartets.

In its commitment to advancing contemporary American music, the Muir Quartet has had commissioned works written for them by such distinguished composers as Joan Tower (Night Fields), Sheila Silver (From Darkness Emerging), Richard Danielpour (Shadow Dances and Psalms of Sorrow—featured on CBS Sunday Morning), Richard Wilson (Third String Quartet), and Charles Fussell (Being Music—based on poetry of Walt Whitman). The quartet also gave the World Premiere performance of the Native American collaborative work, Circle of Faith, featured on National Public Radio. Recently premiered works include those by esteemed American composers Richard Danielpour (Feast of Fools—for bassoon and string quartet), Lukas Foss (String Quartet #4), Ezra Laderman (String Quartets #9 and #10), and Joelle Wallach (String Quartet #3), and Ronald Perera’s first Quartet. In 2007-2008, in addition to their annual appearances at Rhode Island College, the quartet continues its series at Boston University and performs throughout North America, along with fall concerts in Holland.

The Muir Quartet has been in residence at Boston University’s College of Fine Arts since 1983, and gives annual summer workshops at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI). The Muir Quartet has also given master classes at schools nationwide, including the Eastman School of Music, the Curtis Institute, Oberlin Conservatory, and the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University. Since 1989, the quartet has taught, coached, and administered the Emerging Quartets and Composers Program in Utah with eminent composer Joan Tower. This program is now part of the Muir’s role as resident chamber ensemble with the Deer Valley Festival, in partnership with the Utah Symphony/Opera.

Peter Zazofsky, violin | Steven Ansell, viola | Lucia Lin, violin | Michael Reynolds, cello

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