About the Carducci String Quartet

Matthew Denton

Michelle Fleming

Eoin Schmidt-Martin

Emma Denton

Described by The Strad as presenting “a masterclass in unanimity of musical purpose, in which severity could melt seamlessly into charm, and drama into geniality”, the award- winning Carducci Quartet is internationally acclaimed as one of the most accomplished and versatile ensembles of today. Not only mastering the core repertoire, the quartet presents a selection of new works each season and diversifies further with programmes of film music, pop and rock. 

Founded in 1997, the ensemble has won numerous international competitions, including the USA  Concert Artists Guild International Competition, and First Prize at Finland’s Kuhmo International Chamber Music Competition.

The Carducci Quartet performs at prestigious venues across the globe including the Barbican, Cadogan Hall and Wigmore Hall, London; National Concert Hall, Dublin; Tivoli Concert Hall, Copenhagen; The Frick Collection and Carnegie Hall, New York; Library of Congress and John. F Kennedy Center, Washington D.C.; St Lawrence Center for the Arts, Toronto; and Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. Festival residencies include Cheltenham, Ryedale, Lichfield, Presteigne, Kilkenny, Canterbury, Snape Proms, and West Cork.

In 2016, they took home a Royal Philharmonic Society Award for their project, Shostakovich15, an immense cycle of Shostakovich’s Quartets performed across the UK, North, and South America,  with a marathon one-day cycle hosted by Shakespeare’s Globe, London. The project was accompanied by a recording of the 4th, 8th, and 11th Quartets to which they added a further volume in Spring 2019 of the 1st, 2nd, and 7th Quartets, acclaimed by Gramophone Magazine for its “…athletic, upfront performances, clear in texture, forthright in tone and bold in articulation”. The Carduccis returned to the composer in 2022, with performances at the Barbican and Wigmore Hall in London, residencies at Kilkenny and Canterbury Festivals, and a third recording presenting the 9th and 15th Quartets.

Highly celebrated for their diverse approach to programming, the Carducci Quartet has devised numerous projects and is regularly invited to perform new works. Their catalogue of programmes presenting music and spoken word includes focuses on Beethoven, Shostakovich, and on the relationship between Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn.

In 2015 they curated projects around Philip Glass and Steve Reich as part of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award winning ‘Minimalism Unwrapped’ at Kings Place in London. Their recording of the Philip Glass Quartets, for Naxos, has reached over 16 million plays on Spotify.

Education work is an important element of the Carducci Quartet’s work, earning them a place on the Royal Philharmonic Society Award shortlist for their family concert ‘Getting the Quartet Bug!’. The Carducci Music Trust was set up to support their work in schools and with young musicians, and they also perform a number of school concerts each year supported by the CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust.

"a performance of supreme clarity, focus and precision." Gramophone Magazine
"…playing of constant variety, a masterclass in unanimity of musical purpose." The Strad
"'...the Carducci players displayed a deep and almost familial sense of unity in everything they played… full of life and vitality...extravagantly beautiful...' The Washington Post
"...technical rigour, penetrative musical insight and lively yet unified individualism...winning in every sense of the word..." The Irish Times
"...high-octane playing balanced control with devil-may-care spontaneity..." The Guardian
"...the Carducci String Quartet were stunning...they are clearly musicians of high intelligence..." The Times
"...The Carducci Quartet played a blinder at the Wigmore Hall...playing of vivacity and constant rhythmic subtlety..." The Strad
"...their ascent into the league of the world's major quartets has been phenomenal..." The Yorkshire Post