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QNG: Quartet New Generation

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Published on Oct 27, 2008

Hailed as "Four Recorder Virtuosos" by The New York Times, and "mind-blowing" by the Los Angeles Times, QNG—Quartet New Generation took top honors at the 2004Concert Artists Guild International Competition. QNG mesmerizes its audiences through innovative programming that juxtaposes contemporary and early music. Performing on upwards of 20 different recorders of varying sizes and shapes during the course of a typical performance, the Quartet transports the listener into new sonic worlds, confirming the recorder's viability as a modern classical instrument. 

Highlights of 2010 American tours include performances at New York's annual Bang On a Can Marathon, the Virginia Arts Festival, the Chateauville Foundation (VA), Stockton Friends of Chamber Music (CA), and a return engagement in Panama City on the series of the Asociación Nacional de Conciertos of Panama. This follows QNG's 2009 debut in Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium as part of a special performance with the Kronos Quartet and an all-star line-up performing Terry Riley's landmark work In C. 

In 2009, the ensemble released its second CD, entitled In Vain, featuring music of Bach, Scheidt and Bruckner, as well as pieces written for QNG by Hahne, Beeferman, Kosviner and Pulitzer Prize-winner, Paul Moravec. This follows the successful release of QNG's debut CD, Ethereal, in early 2007.

Starting with its successful US debut in 2004 at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, the quartet has since performed in the US on such prestigious series as Merkin Concert Hall, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, University of Chicago Presents, Purdue University Convocations, Orange County Performing Arts Center, the Chautauqua Institution, Da Camera Society of Los Angeles, San Francisco State University, Chicago Cultural Center, Detroit Institute of Arts, Pittsburgh Chamber Music Society the Institute for Advanced Studies of Princeton, NJ, and Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Additional appearances at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's BAM Café and Barbes Bar and Performance Space are part of CAG's New Music/New Places initiative.

Taking advantage of the large recorder family and its flexibility, QNG is constantly searching for new possibilities of sound and expression. The instruments played by the Quartet include a large number of accurate copies of authentic historical instruments plus modern recorders called Pätzoldbasses. These square box-like recorders produce a different structure of overtones based on those of organ pipes and therefore a specific extraordinary sound, which is further enhanced by the percussive nature of the keys. 

The diversity of the instruments, paired with QNG's theatrical flair and high-intensity performance, inspires composers to write in fresh and exciting ways that define the music of our time. With a large repertoire of European works, the collective has begun commissioning American composers. These pieces include Paul Moravec's Mortal Flesh, Stephen Taylor's Flow for Recorder Quartet and Strings (world premiere with the New Philharmonic led by Kirk Muspratt) and new works by Daniel Bernard Roumain, Gordon Beeferman and Nissim Schaul (world premieres on the CAG New Works Series at Symphony Space).

QNG—Quartet New Generation was founded in September 1998 at the Amsterdam Conservatoire and the University of the Arts, Berlin. The collective was also awarded the top prizes at the German Music Competition in Bonn, Germany; the International Gaudeamus Interpreters Competition for Contemporary Music in the Netherlands; the International Chamber Music Competition for Contemporary Music in Poland; and the '13ème Concours International de Musique de Chambre' in France.

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