Quatuor Mosaïques is the most prominent period-instrument quartet performing today. The ensemble has garnered praise for its atypical decision to use gut-stringed instruments which, in combination with its celebrated musicianship, has cultivated the group’s unique sound. The Quartet has toured extensively, won numerous prizes and established a substantial discography. Formed in 1985, the group is comprised of Austrians Erich Höbarth (violin), Andrea Bischof, (violin), Anita Mitterer (viola), and the French cellist Christophe Coin.The Quartet has appeared in Europe, the United States, Australia and Japan and regularly performs in Vienna, London’s Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw and Berlin’s Philharmonic Hall. Quatuor often appears at prestigious European festivals such as Edinburgh, Salzburg, Luzern, Bremen, Bath, Styriarte Graz, Schubertiade Schwarzenberg and Oslo, among others. Quatuor Mosaïques has collaborated with many international artists including pianists András Schiff and Patrick Cohen, clarinetists Wolfgang Meyer and Sabine Meyer and cellists Miklós Perényi and Raphael Pidoux. In 2006 Quatuor Mosaïques was invited to Spain to perform for King Juan Carlos I, using the Monarch’s personal collection of Stradivari instruments.
Of their Zankel Hall performance at New York’s Carnegie Hall during the 2008-2009 season, The New York Times noted that the group performed with “elegant, detailed phrasing and carefully wrought playing.”
Quatuor Mosaïques has an extraordinarily extensive discography which includes works of Haydn, Mozart, Arriaga, Boccherini, Jadin, Beethoven, Schubert and Mendelssohn as well as modern composers. Of the group’s latest release, Schubert’s Der Tod und das Mädchen, The London Times writes, “their performance of Death and the Maiden is music-making of a high order, felt and carried out by players animated as though by a single mind and impulse, yet each of them seeming to respond afresh at every moment.” Recordings of the Wiener Klassik repertoire (Haydn string quartets: Op.20, 33, 77 and the quartets of Mozart dedicated to Haydn) have been awarded numerous prizes such as the Diapason d’or, the Choc du Monde de la Musique, and a Gramophone Award.
These four musicians met while performing with Nikolaus Harnoncourt’sConcentus Musicus in the 1980’s, and decided to perform on original instruments as a classical “caper quartet.” Although the Quartet performs on period instruments it embraces the European quartet tradition, constantly allowing for the evolution of its repertoire as it strives to reveal the music’s psychological underpinnings.