Dublin Guitar Quartet
Described by The Irish Times as "a quartet with a difference", 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, DGQ 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. DGQ'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. DGQ is also included on a recent recording performing Arvo Part'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. DGQ'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, the DGQ performed their transcriptions of the entire set of Philip Glass quartets to great acclaim.
Other performance highlights include a four-city tour of Colombia and two tours of North America in 2013-14. DGQ has performed at the prestigious chamber music venue Wigmore Hall in London. They have also performed in many of the leading venues in the US including The Phillips Collection, Celebrity Series of Boston, and Subculture, Symphony Space and Lincoln Center in New York.
The DGQ are 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 Dublin Guitar Quartet is supported by Music Network and the Arts Council of Ireland.