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Quartet Project sampler

Nine leading string quartets record selections from Geoffrey Hudson’s Quartet Project.


About the Quartet Project

Several years ago, Hybrid Vigor Music commissioned composer Geoffrey Hudson to create a significant addition to the string quartet literature: a six-volume collection of string quartets that opens the world of contemporary music to string players from the outset of their studies. As Bartók’s Mikrokosmos does for piano students, Hudson’s Quartet Project will offer developing musicians the pleasure and inspiration of playing inventive, engaging music as they refine their skills. Starting with pieces written for open string and first finger, the Quartet Project’s 130 short movements grow progressively more difficult over the course of six volumes.

Hudson composed the Quartet Project in collaboration with music schools and string teachers across the United States, from New York to North Dakota. In workshops with more than 100 young string quartets, Hudson honed the music, making sure that it succeeded both artistically and pedagogically. Publication of the full six-volume collection is scheduled for 2015.

About the recording

In conjunction with print publication of the Quartet Project, nine string quartets have recorded 38 selections from the Quartet Project, which will be compiled on a single CD, entitled A Quartet Project Sampler. None of the music has been recorded previously.

The performers featured on A Quartet Project Sampler constitute a roll call of leading American string quartets, with performances from the Chiara, Parker, Miró, Brooklyn Rider, Borromeo, Lark, Artaria, Jupiter, and Apple Hill string quartets. All nine quartets have completed their recordings already.

The last remaining step is mastering the final product, work that will be undertaken by the Immersive Music Project under the direction of Grammy-winning recording engineer Jesse Lewis. The mastering work on the Quartet Project Sampler is scheduled for spring of 2015.

When complete, the Quartet Project Sampler CD will have 38 tracks and a total duration of approximately 52 minutes. In addition, the tracks will be made available on-line through Spotify and iTunes.

Thanks to our wonderful team of musical collaborators, the performances on A Quartet Project Sampler are vivid and compelling. This recording will play an essential role in introducing the Quartet Project to chamber musicians and teachers internationally.

Project Media

“Digital world (0-0-1-1-0-0)” from the Quartet Project
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Brooklyn Rider performs a piece from the first volume of Geoffrey Hudson’s Quartet Project. All of the notes in “Digital world (0-0-1-1-0-0)” can be played with open strings or the first finger. With such pieces, the Quartet Project opens the world of playing chamber music to relative beginners.

In the Quartet Project, Hudson opted to write many short pieces often less than a minute long. This enables young quartets to digest an entire miniature in one or two rehearsals, unlike the months they would spend on a movement of Mozart or Haydn.

“Harvest song” from the Quartet Project
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The Apple Hill String Quartet performs a piece from mid-way through the Quartet Project. “Harvest song” uses several shifting meters, including a lot of 5/8. An early introduction to assymetric meters (like 5/8 and 7/8) is a central feature of the Quartet Project.

“Signs of struggle” from the Quartet Project
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The Chiara Quartet performs one of the more advanced pieces from the Quartet Project. “Signs of struggle” is built on the simple motif of a wide descending leap. A contrasting middle section is more lyrical before a return to the opening material.

Start and End Dates



Boston, Massachusetts

Project Created By

Amherst, Massachusetts
Hybrid Vigor Music is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to develop, produce, and proliferate new musical works that reach beyond the confines of the concert hall and collaboratively engage communities. In the world of biology, hybrid vigor is the vitality that results from the combination of two separate genetic groups. Hybrid offspring are more…

In Collaboration With

Amherst, Massachusetts
Boston, Massachusetts
Brooklyn, New York


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