Elliott Carter, William Schuman – String Quartets – Juilliard String Quartet (1961/2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 44:02 minutes | 1,82 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: PrestoClassical | Front Cover | © RCA Records
Recorded: 10/27/1960 – 10/31/1960, RCA Studio B, New York, NY

The Juilliard String Quartet was founded in 1946 by William Schuman, who was the president of the Juilliard School in New York. The original members of the quartet were violinists Robert Mann and Robert Koff, violist Raphael Hillyer, and cellist Arthur Winograd. The members of the quartet have changed a number of times over the course of the ensemble’s career, but after more than fifty years of performances and recordings, the Juilliard Quartet has remained one of the most famous and well-respected string quartets in the world.
The Juilliard Quartet was born out of a need for committed performances of modern music, and for a revitalized approach to the standard string quartet repertoire. When William Schuman, then the new president of the Juilliard School, proposed the formation of a resident string quartet to the board of directors in 1947, it was with the understanding that this group would, in his words, “embrace the entire repertoire of music,” with the only stipulation being that its name would not be changed, no matter who the players were. The debut performances of the Quartet were astonishingly successful, and critics remarked on the group’s vigorous, dynamic playing, and the overwhelming intensity of each performance. More recent reviews continue to cite the Juilliard Quartet’s passion, but also its “homogeneity” and “secure” sound, no doubt a product of its long and distinguished history.
The Quartet has been recognized for giving equal reverence to both twentieth-century music and past masterworks, and has successfully performed not only works by Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn, and Brahms, but also less standard repertoire, including the music of Berg, Schoenberg, and Shostakovitch. The Quartet is well-known in particular for its performances of the Beethoven string quartet cycle, but, it is also recognized as an important champion of contemporary American music, on average premiering one new work each year, if not more. Its American repertory includes music by Elliot Carter, Aaron Copland, Roger Sessions, and Milton Babbitt.