The phenomenal Dover Quartet catapulted to international stardom following a stunning sweep of the 2013 Banff Competition, at which they won every prize. Named the Cleveland Quartet Award-winner, and honored with the coveted Avery Fisher Career Grant, the Dover has become one of the most in-demand ensembles in the world. The Quartet’s rise from noteworthy young ensemble to the top of their field has been “practically meteoric” (Strings). With its burnished warmth, incisive rhythms, and instinctual unanimity, the Quartet’s distinctive sound has helped confirm its status as “the young American string quartet of the moment” (New Yorker). The Dover serves as the quartet-in-residence for the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, Chamber Music Northwest, Artosphere, the Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival, and Peoples’ Symphony in New York, and continues in its role as the first-ever quartet-in-residence for the Kennedy Center.

In 2019-20 the Dover Quartet opens the season for Chamber Music Houston, Duke Performances, and Spivey Hall; returns to the Savannah Music Festival; and will be featured in a full-length performance as part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s celebration of the Guarneri Quartet. The Dover will make its Zankel Hall debut with their frequent collaborator Emanuel Ax, and will return to the Wigmore Hall both in a quartet performance and with their longtime friend Edgar Meyer. The Quartet’s Beethoven project continues with a half cycle for Union College and a complete cycle for the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance, and will culminate with the release of the group’s complete Beethoven cycle beginning in 2020 (Cedille). Collaborations this season include those with Inon Barnaton, Ray Chen, the Escher Quartet, Edgar Meyer, Davóne Tines, and Bridget Kibbey. 

In 2018-19 the Dover Quartet performed more than a hundred concerts around North America, including those at the Kennedy Center, San Francisco Performances, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Spivey Hall, Boston’s Celebrity Series, the Chamber Music Society of Detroit, and Carnegie Hall. In addition, the Dover’s season featured tours of Hong Kong, Europe, and Australia, collaborations with Emanuel Ax, Inon Barnatan, Peter Serkin, Anthony McGill, and Roomful of Teeth, and premieres of new works by Caroline Shaw and Matan Porat. The Quartet was thrilled to be invited by the maverick filmmaker and cultural icon David Lynch to be featured at his Los Angeles Festival of Disruption.  

Cedille Records released the Quartet’s sophomore album, entitled Voices of Defiance: 1943, 1944, 1945 in October 2017. The recording takes listeners on a powerful journey through works written during World War II by Viktor Ullmann, Dmitri Shostakovich, and Simon Laks. The 2016-17 season saw the release of its all-Mozart debut recording on the Cedille label, a nod to the 1965 debut album of the Guarneri Quartet, whose founding violist, the late Michael Tree, joined the Dover Quartet on the recording.

In the spring of 2016, the Dover Quartet was recognized with the Hunt Family Award, one of the inaugural Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Awards, and in past years has taken top prizes at the Fischoff Competition and the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition. All four Quartet members are consummate solo artists: first violinist Joel Link took first prize at the Menuhin Competition; violinist Bryan Lee and violist Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt have appeared as soloists with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Tokyo Philharmonic, respectively; and cellist Camden Shaw released a solo album debut on the Unipheye Music label.

Hailed as “the next Guarneri Quartet” (Chicago Tribune), the Dover Quartet draws from the lineage of that distinguished ensemble, as well as that of the Cleveland and Vermeer Quartets; its members studied at the Curtis Institute of Music and Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where they were mentored extensively by Shmuel Ashkenasi, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, Kenneth Goldsmith, Joseph Silverstein, Arnold Steinhardt, Michael Tree, and Peter Wiley. It was at Curtis that the Quartet first formed, and its name pays tribute to Dover Beach by fellow Curtis alumnus Samuel Barber. The group has since returned for residencies to Rice in 2011-13, and to Curtis, where it became the conservatory’s first Quartet-in-Residence, in 2013-14. In addition, in 2015 the Dover was appointed the first Resident Ensemble of Peoples’ Symphony Concerts in the 116-year history of New York City's oldest concert series.

The Dover Quartet is dedicated to sharing its music with under-served communities and is actively involved with Music for Food, an initiative enabling musicians to raise resources and awareness in the fight against hunger.

The Dover Quartet plays on the following instruments:

Joel Link: Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, Paris circa 1857, on loan by Desirée Ruhstrat

Bryan Lee: Riccardo Antoniazzi, Milan 1904

Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt: Michele Deconet, Venice, 1780, the ‘Kroyt,’ generously on loan from the grandson of Boris Kroyt of the Budapest Quartet

Camden Shaw: Frank Ravatin, France, 2010





July 2019 – Please do not edit without permission.

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DC Metro Theater Arts

January 19, 2018

The Chicago Tribune

October 8, 2015

The Washington Post

October 9, 2014

The Wall Street Journal

October 11, 2017

Montreal Gazette

June 11, 2015


In an exciting and unique collaboration, the Dover will be touring with the adventurous Grammy Award-winning vocal project Roomful of Teeth. The program features a piece for string quartet and vocal ensemble by the “high-voltage and wildly imaginative” (Philadelphia Inquirer) Gabriella Smith which is being commissioned by Bravo! Vail and La Jolla Music Society.

Gabriella Smith: Requiem for vocal octet and string quartet
Roomful of Teeth: vocal performance
Dover Quartet: quartet performance
Caroline Shaw: Ritornello for vocal ensemble and string quartet


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Throughout the 2019-20, the Dover and Escher Quartets are teaming up for a blockbuster all-octet program:

Shostakovich: Two Pieces for String Octet, Op. 11
Mendelssohn: Octet in E-flat major, Op. 20
Enescu: Octet for Strings in C major, Op. 7


The Dover Quartet collaborates with harpist Bridget Kibbey to celebrate the music of J.S. Bach. The "father" of all composers encouraged the performance of many of his works by a variety of instrumentalists, and Bridget and the Dovers have taken him up on the offer with a marvelously diverse program:

Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV 565 (hp)
Sonata in E-Flat major, BWV 1031 (hp, vln)
Goldberg Variations, BWV 988 - Aria & Four Var. (vln, vla, vc, hp)
Harpsichord Concerto in F minor, BWV 1056 (All)
Sonata in G minor for Violin & Clavier, BWV 1020 (vln, hp)
Art of Fugue, BWV 1080 - Contrapunctus 1-4 (Dover)
Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 in G major, BWV 1048 (All)

Program Choices

2019-2020 Program Choices

September 2019 - mid-february 2020

Program I: Bound by Brahms
Mozart: Adagio and Fugue in C minor, K. 546
Hindemith: Quartet No. 3
Brahms: Quartet No. 3 in B-flat major, Op. 67

Program II: The Revolutionaries
Beethoven: Quartet in F minor, Op. 95
Britten: Quartet No. 1
Shostakovich: Quartet No. 9


Program I: Pushing the Envelope
Mozart: Quartet in C major, K. 465, “Dissonance”
Bartók: Quartet No. 2
Ravel: Quartet in F major

Program II: The Originals
Zemlinsky: Quartet No. 1
David Bruce: The Lick Quartet (2019, commissioned for the Dover Quartet)
Mendelssohn: Quartet in D major, Op. 44, No. 1

2020-2021 Program Choices

September 2020 – Late January 2021

Program I
Beethoven: Quartet in G major, Op. 18, No. 2
Shostakovich: Quartet No. 8 in C minor, Op. 110
Brahms: Quartet in C minor, Op. 51, No. 1

Program II
Haydn: Quartet in D minor, Op. 76, No. 2
Ligeti: Quartet No. 1, “Metamorphoses nocturnes”
Dvořák: Quartet in G major, Op. 106

February 2021 – June 2021

Program I
Schubert: Quartettsatz, D. 703
Mozart: Quartet in A major, K. 464
Schönberg: Quartet No. 1 in D minor, Op. 7

Program II
Mendelssohn: Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 12
Ligeti: Quartet No. 1, “Metamorphoses nocturnes”
Dvořák: Quartet in G major, Op. 106