The Dublin Guitar Quartet was founded in 2002 and has worked with several of the world’s leading composers, including a particularly close association with Philip Glass, as well as younger composers from Ireland and beyond. Their program is an innovative mixture of music composed or arranged for this intriguing ensemble, including works by Philip Glass and other American composers such as Rachel Grimes, Marc Mellits, and guitaristcomposers Bryce Dessner and William Kanengiser. Also featured are works by Urmas Sisask from Estonia, Nikita Koshkin from Russia, and guitarist Dave Flynn from Ireland.
WILLIAM KANENGISER (b. 1959)
DAVE FLYNN (b. 1977)
RACHEL GRIMES (b. 1970)
Book of Leaves
PHILIP GLASS (b. 1937)
BRYCE DESSNER (b. 1976)
URMAS SISASK (b. 1960)
Songs in Honour of the Virgin Mary
NIKITA KOSHKIN (b. 1956)
Changing the Guard
MARC MELLITS (b. 1966)
Described as a "quartet with a difference" by the Irish Times, the Dublin Guitar Quartet is the first classical guitar quartet entirely devoted to new music. Since its formation at the Dublin Conservatory of Music and Drama, the Quartet has worked to expand the limited repertoire by commissioning new works and adapting modern masterpieces from outside of the guitar repertoire.
With the help of eight and eleven-string guitars, the quartet has created an original catalogue of arrangements by composers such as Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Arvo Pärt, and György Ligeti. The Quartet’s work has brought the attention of some of the world's leading composers. Recent activity includes a release on Philip Glass's Orange Mountain Music label and a new 55-minute commission by Michael Gordon. The Quartet performed alongside the Grammy-award winning Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Conspirare and the Texas Guitar Quartet in a premiere of How Little You Are by Nico Muhly in Austin, Texas in 2015. The Dublin Guitar Quartet is also included on a recent recording performing Arvo Pärt's Summa. The quartet worked with the composer in making the arrangement and received guidance during the recording process. The arrangement is published by the composer's own publisher Universal Edition.
In 2010 the quartet was involved in a very special performance of Repentance for cello, guitars and double bass by celebrated Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina. The composer was present as they joined the Russian cellist Ivan Monighetti in a concert in St. Peter's Church, Drogheda. The Dublin Guitar Quartet’s recording of this work was released on the LCMS label in 2012. In 2008, the Quartet was honored to share the stage with legendary American composer Philip Glass in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dundalk. In 2010, they performed their transcriptions of the entire set of Philip Glass quartets to great acclaim.
The Dublin Guitar Quartet has made several tours of North and South America. They have performed at the prestigious chamber music venue’s including Wigmore Hall in London, The Phillips Collection in Washington, DC, Celebrity Series of Boston, Subculture, Symphony Space, and Lincoln Center in New York.
The Dublin Guitar Quartet are also devoted to developing the electric side of the guitar quartet repertoire with works like Nagoya Guitars and Electric Counterpoint by Steve Reich, and a recent commission for electric guitar quartet, Amplified by Michael Gordon. This was premiered at the David Lang/Bang on a Can-curated festival of new music at the National Concert Hall, Dublin in February 2015. The Quartet is supported by Music Network and the Arts Council of Ireland.