The Rolston String Quartet ’16Norfolk has been named the new fellowship quartet-in-residence at the Yale School of Music. The group, whose previous residencies include the Yale Summer School of Music/Norfolk Chamber Music Festival in the summer of 2016, will begin their tenure at YSM this fall. While at Yale, the quartet will work closely with the Brentano String Quartet — YSM’s quartet-in-residence — perform recitals, and participate in education-outreach programs.
“The Rolston String Quartet is very eager to come to New Haven as the Yale School of Music’s fellowship quartet-in-residence,” the group said in a statement. “We are incredibly optimistic about the possibilities for development and growth provided by Yale’s stimulating environment. We can’t wait to meet the Yale students and faculty who will illuminate and influence this new experience. Working closely with the Brentano Quartet is a dream come true. They are endlessly generous and inspiring people whose artistic spirits are to be admired. We look forward to deepening our musical understandings, refining our interpretations, and benefiting from their extensive professional experience.
“We will be so lucky to be able to coach chamber ensembles made up of Yale students; this opportunity is a rare one that will yield immense insight into the complexities of teaching music. The fellowship program at Yale will aid our growth as we cultivate an ensemble that reflects the values of community, the highest levels of artistic and academic excellence, and the important traditions of chamber music,” the group said.
The Rolston String Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 during a chamber music residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. The group’s namesake is the late Canadian violinist Thomas Rolston, the founder and longtime director of the Music and Sound Programs at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.
In 2016, the quartet was named the first-prize winner of the prestigious Banff International String Quartet Competition. The group has also collected prizes at the 31st Chamber Music Yellow Springs Competition, the inaugural M-Prize Competition at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, and the Bordeaux International String Quartet Competition.
Currently the graduate quartet-in-residence at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music in Houston, the quartet has participated in residencies and fellowships at numerous festivals, including the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Académie musicale de Villecroze, Aspen Music Festival and School, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, McGill International String Quartet Academy, Robert Mann String Quartet Institute, St. Lawrence String Quartet Seminar, and the Yehudi Menuhin Chamber Music Festival.
Now in its third year since being restructured, the String Quartet Fellowship program at YSM offers one exceptional young quartet the opportunity to work closely with the Brentano String Quartet. The program is designed to mentor the next generation of professional string quartets, offering intensive training, coaching, and ample performance opportunities.
The Rolston String Quartet succeeds the Argus Quartet, who held the residency at YSM from 2015 to 2017. The Argus Quartet will begin a new residency at The Juilliard School this fall.