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THE SCOOP | Tie Awarded At 2019 Banff International String Quartet Competition

By Michael Vincent on September 2, 2019

The Viano String Quartet and the Marmen Quartet have been awarded first place at the 2019 Banff International String Quartet Competition.

2019 Banff International String Quartet Competition
The Viano String Quartet and the Marmen Quartet have been awarded first place at the 2019 Banff International String Quartet Competition. ((Photo: Don Lee)

For the first time in its 36 year history, the Banff International Quartet Competition (BISQC) has split the first place prize between two quartets: The Viano String Quartet (Canada/USA) and the Marmen String Quartet (UK).

The announcements concluded seven days of competition by 10 quartets from around the world in Banff Alberta.

The competition included the Recital Round, the Romantic Round, the Canadian Commission Round, and the Shubertplus Round, and ended with three finalists performing a complete work by Beethoven.

“Anybody who witnessed the remarkable music-making in Banff this week knows that the art of the string quartet is being pursued at an all-time high, said Artistic Director Barry Shiffman. The artistry of the Viano and Marmen Quartets deserve the 1st prize of this much-loved competition. While this an unprecedented result in the history of the Banff International String Quartet Competition, it is the result of an abundance of talent.”

Viano String Quartet
Banff Centre 2019, BISCQ, Group Photos, Viano String Quartet (Photo: Don Lee)

The Viano String Quartet was formed in 2015 at the Colburn Conservatory of Music in Los Angeles, and includes Hao Zhou and Lucy Wang (violins), Aiden Kane (viola), and Tate Zawadiuk (cello).

Marmen String Quartet
Banff Centre 2019, BISCQ, Group Photos, Marmen String Quartet (Photo: Don Lee)

The Marmen String Quartet was founded in 2013 at the Royal College of Music. Members include Johannes Marmen and Ricky Gore (violins), Bryony Gibson-Cornish (viola) and  Steffan Morris (cello).

Both quartets will receive a $16,500 cash prize, share concert tours in Europe and North America, and participate in a creative residency at Banff Centre. They will also share a two-year paid residency worth $160,000 USD at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, perform in a concert at the Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt (Austria), participate in the St. Lawrence String Quartet (SLSQ) Chamber Music Seminar, and act as resident string quartets for Stanford University’s summer Pre-Collegiate Studies Program.

Second Prize was awarded to the Callisto Quartet (USA). They will receive a $12,000 cash prize and creative residency at Banff Centre, including coaching and mentorship opportunities.

The 2019 BISQC jury included Gillian Ansell, Martin Beaver, Adrian Fung, David Harrington, Nobuko Imai, Philip Setzer and Ursula Smith.

LUDWIG VAN TORONTO

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Michael Vincent
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Michael Vincent

Michael Vincent is the Editor-in-chief Ludwig Van and CEO of Museland Media. He publishes regularly and writes occasionally. He has worked as a senior editor for over fifteen years and is a former freelance classical music critic for the Toronto Star. Michael holds a Doctorate in Music from the University of Toronto.
Michael Vincent
Follow me
Michael Vincent
Follow me

Michael Vincent

Michael Vincent is the Editor-in-chief Ludwig Van and CEO of Museland Media. He publishes regularly and writes occasionally. He has worked as a senior editor for over fifteen years and is a former freelance classical music critic for the Toronto Star. Michael holds a Doctorate in Music from the University of Toronto.
Michael Vincent
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