The Kreutzer Quartet has been aptly described as one of the most talented and eclectic string quartets of its time. Indeed, but the word eclectic for once is truly genuine: the group plays a colorful mixture of repertory, from standards by Haydn, Beethoven, Ravel, Sibelius, and more to contemporary works by Finnissy, Gloria Coates, David Gorton, Josep Soler, Haflidi Hallgrímsson, Judith Weir, and many others. That said, its recorded repertory is decidedly slanted toward the modern: the Kreutzer players have recorded the entire outputs of Tippett, Reicha, David Matthews, Roberto Gerhard, Thomas Simaku, Jeremy Dale Roberts, and others. Moreover, there have been over 200 quartet works dedicated to the group, many of which it has premiered. The Kreutzers have appeared on television and radio across Europe and have served four times as ensemble-in-residence at Tate St. Ives art gallery in Cornwall, England, where they have performed many concerts. The Kreutzer Quartet has recorded for several labels, including Metier, Naxos, Chandos, and Carlton.
The Kreutzer Quartet was formed 1988 and their members are: Peter Sheppard Skaerved (first violin), Mihailo Trandafilovksi (second violin), Morgan Goff (viola), and Neil Heyde (cello). Trandafilovski and Goff were replacements, respectively, for original members Gordon MacKay and Bridget Carey. The group quickly became recognized as one of the foremost young string quartets in the U.K.
Indeed, but the Kreutzer Quartet's rise did not occur despite its adventurous repertory, but in many ways because of it: from the beginning they worked closely with many of the contemporary composers mentioned above, especially Tippett, Matthews, Weir, Hallgrímsson, and a few others. The group garnered numerous awards and citations in the coming years, including being selected for the 1996-1997 National Federation of Music Societies Tour.
The Kreutzer Quartet's recordings soon began drawing attention, too. Among its earlier successes were a pair of Metier CDs from 2000: String Quartets 1 & 2 by Roberto Gerhard and Catalan Quartets, an album that offered quartets by Josep Soler, Miguel Roger, and Albert Sardá. In 2002 Naxos began issuing recordings by the Kreutzer Quartet, the initial CD offering Quartets 1, 5 & 6 by Germany-based American composer Gloria Coates.
Though the Kreutzer continued presenting standard and modern fare, its concerts often were purely adventurous: the June 3, 2007, concert at Tate St. Ives featured works by Nyman, Sculthorpe, Matthews, Priaulx Rainier, and a world premiere by Fabrice Fitch (Agricologies VII).