Gropius Quartet

String quartet

“It was marvelous with what incredible intensity the Gropius ensemble makes music. The vehement plumbing of and enjoyment of the passion, is doubtlessly what creates this electric tension, and makes the music so alive”



Walter Gropius was considered a revolutionary visionary who, in the 1920’s, founded the Bauhaus style. Clarity and boldness characterized his works. Berlin and Weimar were the center of his work as is true for the quartet. Following the example of Gropius, and influenced by personal interactions with Yehudi Menuhin and Mstislav Rostropovich, the Gropius Quartet has as its goal to uncover the structure of a work, and make it alive through passionate interpretation.

Having already known each other since their student days at the International Menuhin Music Academy Gstaad and the Julliard School New York, the Gropius Quartet is more than the sum of its parts. Indira Koch is concertmistress of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Friedemann Eichhorn, Alexia Eichhorn and Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt teach as professors at the Franz Liszt University of Music in Weimar. They are all established soloists and chamber musicians. The constellation of its intuitive and established ensemble work contributes precisely to the quartet’s electric dynamics.

The Gropius Quartet presents itself with exciting programs in which, in addition to the classical repertoire, work discoveries and often premieres can be heard. The Gropius Quartet works closely with composers such as Enjott Schneider, Fazil Say, George Alexander Albrecht and Sir Karl Jenkins. A highlight was the collaboration with Evgeny Kissin, whose string quartet the Gropius Quartet developed with him. In 2019 the Gropius Quartet resided in New York. Inspired by this study visit, the Gropius Quartet brought a rousing program with works by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, John Adams and Antonin Dvorák. Since its founding, the Gropius Quartet has given concerts in Germany and other European countries, including with Gidon Kremer, Mischa Maisky and Camille Thomas. As “Artists in Residence”, the Gropius Quartet is a welcome guest at several festivals. This was followed in 2022 by highly acclaimed debuts at the Konzerthaus Berlin and two sold-out concerts at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg. The quartet will return to both venues in the 2024/25 season, and concert tours to the USA and Canada are also planned. Numerous recordings document the artistic work of the Gropius Quartet. Deutschlandradio Kultur broadcast a large portrait in its series “The Special Recording”. A CD with works by Mendelssohn, Albrecht, Dvorak and Casals will be released on the “hänssler classic” label in spring 2024. Another recording will be released by Naxos in 2024: Fazil Say's quartet “Divorce” and the world premiere recording of his string sextet “Leopards”. The Gropius Quartet is also featured on the new CD “The Chopin Project” by cellist Camille Thomas on Deutsche Grammophon.

Friedemann Eichhorn, violin, has recorded over thirty CDs as a soloist and chamber musician, including the complete violin works of Fazil Say, working together with the composer and conductor Christoph Eschenbach. He teaches as professor at the Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt, and is artistic director of the renowned Kronberg Academy.

Indira Koch, violin, is the concertmistress of the Deutsche Oper Berlin as well as artistic director and concertmistress of the Kammerphilharmonie Metamorphosen Berlin. She has appeared as guest soloist with the Hamburg Symphony, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, and the Roumanian State Philharmonic. Concerts have led her to New York’s Carnegie Hall, Tokyo’s Santory Hall, the Berlin Philharmonie and the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg.

Alexia Eichhorn, viola, has concertized as violinist and violist with orchestras in Europe and Asia and at renowned festivals. As concertmistress for many years of the Hofer Symphoniker, she teaches at the Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt in Weimar. Recordings of numerous uncovered works are on various labels, Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt, cello has concertized as prize winner of the Tchaikovsky Competition Moscow with musicians such as Lang Lang, Emmanuel Ax, Chrisoph Eschenbach and Gil Shaham, and was guest soloist with the Gewandhaus Orchester Leipzig and the Orchestre Philharmonique de la Suisse Romande under the direction of Marek Janowski, Rafael Frübeck and Donald Runnicles. He teaches at the Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt Weimar and at the Kronberg Academy. Sony Classical has released many of his recordings as soloist and conductor.