The Minguet Quartet was founded in 1988 and is today made up of Ulrich Isfort (violin I), Annette Reisinger (violin II), Aroa Sorin (viola) and Matthias Diener (cello). The group takes its name from Pablo Minguet, an eighteenth-century Spanish philosopher who tried in his writings to make the fine arts accessible to the masses. The Minguet Quartet has the same intention.
The Minguet Quartet is today among the internationally most popular younger string quartets and performs at major European concert venues like the London Wigmore Hall, the Cologne and Berlin Philharmonie, the Auditorio in Madrid and Palau in Barcelona, the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, the Vienna Konzerthaus and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw.
The prestigious music festivals they have taken part in include the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Schwetzingen Festival, the Bad Kissingen Summer Festival, the Bremen Music Festival, the Bergen International Festival, the Festival du Saintes, the Musica d'Hoy in Madrid, the Festival d'Automne in Paris, the Edinburgh Festival, the Berlin Festival, the Beethoven Festival in Bonn and the Salzburg Festival. The Minguet Quartet has undertaken concert tours in Europe and to Israel, Japan, China, India, Central and Southeast Asia, North Africa and the USA.
The ensemble performs Classical, Romantic and modern music, promoting the latter by premiering numerous twenty-first-century compositions. Meeting important composers of our time inspires new ideas for concert programmes.
The first complete recording of the string quartets of Wolfgang Rihm, Peter Ruzicka and Jörg Widmann are among their most important projects.
The ensemble presents its refined sound and allows listeners to rediscover the impressive music of the late Romantic era in their recent complete CD recording of the string quartets of Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Josef Suk and Heinrich von Herzogenberg (on the cpo label).
The four musicians were trained as soloists by celebrated teachers at international conservatories and studied chamber music at the Folkwang Hochschule in Essen and the Cologne College of Music. They have been influenced by working with Walter Levin (LaSalle Quartet) and members of the Amadeus, Melos and Alban Berg Quartets.
The Minguet Quartet plays on a set of instruments, kindly given on permanent loan by the Stiftung Kunst und Kultur, Nord-Rhein-Westfalen.
In the season 2012/13 there are invitations to the Salzburger Festspiele, the George-Enescu-Festival Bucharest, the Mozartwoche Salzburg, the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, the Kissinger Sommer and Würzburger Mozartfest, the Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival, the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern as well as to the Philharmonie Cologne, the Alte Oper Frankfurt and the Concertgebouw Amsterdam.
Partners are under others the sopranos Mojca Erdmann and Claron McFadden, the baritone Christian Gerhaher, the clarinettists Sharon Kam and Jörg Widmann, the pianists Ragna Schirmer and Tal&Groethuysen, the violist Gérard Caussé, the Auryn Quartet, the actor Michael Degen, the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern and the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln.
For the complete recording of the works for string quartet from Peter Ruzicka the Minguet Quartet was awarded the ECHO KLASSIK PRIZE 2010.