Ensemble | North American Representation
2018-2019 Biography

Cristiano Gualco, violin; Paolo Andreoli, violin;
Simone Gramaglia, viola; Giovanni Scaglione, cello

Quartetto di Cremona is admired as a preeminent quartet of its generation, noted for its lustrous sound, refined musicianship, and stylistic versatility.  Since its founding in 2000 at the Accademia Walter Stauffer in Cremona, the Quartet has toured extensively in Europe, the United States, South America, and Asia, appeared at leading festivals, and performed regularly on radio and television broadcasts, including RAI, BBC, Westdeutscher Rundfunk, and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.  The Quartetto di Cremona’s extensive repertoire encompasses key masterworks—Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert—and essential twentieth-century literature by Berg, Schoenberg, Webern, Bartók, Shostakovich, and Mauricio Kagel.

Highlights of Quartetto di Cremona’s 2018-2019 season include a major tour throughout Europe—Milan, Verona, Florence, Rome, Genoa, Bergamo, Berlin, Hamburg, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Leiden, Geneva, Zurich, and Valencia.  In the Americas, the quartet appears in Cartagena, London, Ontario, Santa Monica, and Chapman University in Orange, California, as well as New York at the Frick Collection, in a program that includes Hugo Wolf’s Italian Serenade, Puccini’s elegiac Crisantemi, Verdi’s String Quartet in E minor, and Tempi di Quartetto by contemporary Italian composer Lorenzo Ferrero. 

During the 2017-2018 season, the Quartetto di Cremona made its debut at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw and appeared at the city’s Muziekgebouw, as a participant in the prestigious String Quartet Biennale.  It toured the United States, China, Japan, Denmark, Germany, and the United Kingdom.  Notable engagements included performances at Hamburg’s Laeiszhalle, Stockholm, Berlin’s Konzethaus, Geneva, Zurich, and Madrid, and appearances in the major concert halls of their native Italy.  The quartet collaborates with both eminent and rising musicians in a range of chamber music, including clarinetist David Orlowsky, violist Lawrence Dutton, double bassist Edicson Ruiz, pianists Andrea Lucchesini, Anna Geniushene, Aaron Pilsan, Cédric Tiberghien, cellists Eckart Runge, Jaime Walton, Pieter Wispelway, and the Emerson String Quartet.

In July 2018, the German label Audite issued the box set of Quartetto di Cremona’s complete cycle of the Beethoven quartets, recorded during the period 2013-2016, which includes the String Quintet in C major, Op. 29 with Lawrence Dutton, violist of the Emerson String Quartet.  The first volume in the series received widespread and immediate recognition, including a five-star rating in BBC Music Magazine and selection as album of the month by Fonoforum, the German journal.  The seventh CD gained the Supersonic Award from the German magazine Pizzicato and the Echo Klassik 2017 prize.  More recently, the Quartet was a winner of the International Classical Music Awards 2018 for the seventh and eighth discs of the Beethoven series, and a new recording of Schubert works with cellist Eckart Runge is slated for release in September 2018.   

Since 2011, they have led a renowned program for professional and advanced string quartets at the Accademia Walter Stauffer, in addition to conducting masterclasses throughout Europe and tours of the United States.

As ambassador for the international Friends of Stradivari project, the Quartetto di Cremona performs on the “Paganini Quartet” by Antonio Stradivari, a complete family of string instruments once owned by Niccolò Paganini, on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation. 

Quartetto di Cremona is also supported by the Kulturfond Peter Eckes which provides the musicians with four superb instruments:  violin Giovanni Battista Guadagnini, violin Paolo Antonio Testore, viola Gioachino Torazzi, cello Don Nicola Amati). In 2015, the musicians were awarded honorary citizenship by the city of Cremona.  The Quartet resides in Genoa. 

Cristiano Gualco – Stradivarius 1727 Violin “Paganini”
Paolo Andreoli – Stradivarius 1680 Violin “Paganini”
Simone Gramaglia – Stradivarius 1731 Viola “Paganini”
Giovanni Scaglione – Stradivarius 1736 Cello “Paganini”

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“It’s a rare blend: breadth of sound and capriciousness combined with perfect tuning and ensemble has the players sounding absolutely of one voice… Nothing less than life-affirming.”  – Gramophone  

“The Cremona Quartet completes its Beethoven series with a fine coupling, combining exemplary technique and intonational purity with an interpretive acuity that strips away 19th-century rhetoric while avoiding the pitfalls of sounding merely ‘historically informed’.” – The Strad  

“The Quartetto di Cremona’s magnificent survey of Beethoven’s Complete String Quartets moves securely and unquestionably into mastery... such warm playing; such perfection on a silver disc; what a glory this is.”  – The Herald

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