Recognized as one of the world's great ensembles, the Takács Quartet plays with a unique
blend of drama, warmth, and humor, combining four distinct musical personalities to bring
fresh insights to the string quartet repertoire.
In 2012, Gramophone announced that the Takács was the only string quartet to
be inducted into its first Hall of Fame, along with such legendary artists as Jascha
Heifetz, Leonard Bernstein, and Dame Janet Baker. The ensemble also won the 2011 award for
Best Chamber Music and Song presented by the Royal Philharmonic Society in London. Based in
Boulder at the University of Colorado, the Takács Quartet performs 90 concerts each year in
North America and throughout Europe, as well as in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and South
Appointed in 2012 as the first-ever Associate Artists at Wigmore Hall, the Takács presents
six concerts per season in London. Other European engagements include performances in the
Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Musikverein in Vienna, and the Musée d'Orsay in
In 2013-2014, the Takács returns to Japan and Singapore. The ensemble also performs
Bartók's quartet cycle throughout the US, including performances at Ravinia, Princeton, the
Kennedy Center, Stanford, and UC Berkeley, and in Boston and Cleveland. The quartet
recently toured in North America with pianists Marc-André Hamelin and Garrick Ohlsson,
including concerts at Lincoln Center.
The Takács' award-winning recordings include the complete Beethoven cycle on the Decca
label. In 2005, the late Beethoven quartets won Disc of the Year and Chamber Award from
BBC Music Magazine, a Gramophone Award, and a Japanese Record
Academy Award. The quartet's recordings of the early and middle Beethoven quartets
collected a Grammy, another Gramophone Award, a Chamber Music America Award,
and two additional awards from the Japanese Recording Academy. The quartet has also made 16
recordings for the Decca label since 1988 of works by Beethoven, Bartók, Borodin, Brahms,
Chausson, Dvořák, Haydn, Mozart, Schubert, and Smetana. The ensemble's recording of
Bartók's six string quartets received the 1998 Gramophone Award for chamber
music and, in 1999, was nominated for a Grammy.
The Takács is known for innovative programming. In 2007, it performed with Academy
Award-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman at Carnegie Hall. The group regularly
collaborates with Hungarian folk ensemble Muzsikás in programs that explore the folk
sources of Bartók's music. The Takács also performed a music and poetry program on a
14-city US tour with poet Robert Pinsky. In 2010, the ensemble collaborated with the
Colorado Shakespeare Festival and David Lawrence Morse on a drama project that explored the
composition of Beethoven's last quartets.
The members of the Takács Quartet are Christoffersen Faculty Fellows at the University of
Colorado. The quartet has helped to develop a string program with a special emphasis on
chamber music, where students work in a nurturing environment designed to help them develop
their artistry. The members' commitment to teaching is enhanced by summer residencies at
the Aspen Music Festival and at the Music Academy of the West, Santa Barbara. The Takács is
also a Visiting Quartet at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.
The Takács Quartet was formed in 1975 at the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest by Gábor
Takács-Nagy, Károly Schranz, Gábor Ormai, and András Fejér while all four were students. It
first received international attention in 1977, winning first prize and the critics' prize
at the International String Quartet Competition in Evian, France. The quartet also won the
gold medal at the 1978 Portsmouth and Bordeaux competitions, and first prizes at the
Budapest International String Quartet Competition in 1978 and the Bratislava Competition in
1981. The quartet made its North American debut tour in 1982. Violinist Edward Dusinberre
joined in 1993 and violist Roger Tapping in 1995. Violist Geraldine Walther replaced Mr.
Tapping in 2005. In 2001, the Takács Quartet was awarded the Order of Merit of the Knight's
Cross of the Republic of Hungary; in March 2011, each member was awarded the Order of Merit
Commander's Cross by the President of the Republic of Hungary.