Away We Go: The Fiery Strings of Brooklyn Rider, In The Studio


Brooklyn Rider (Courtesy of the artist)


Hear the inventive string quartet perform in the Soundcheck studio.

Brooklyn Rider is a Brooklyn, NY based string quartet whose members include violinists Johnny Gandelsman and Colin Jacobsen, violist Nicholas Cords and cellist Eric Jacobsen. They are mainly known for playing unusual and contemporary repertoire, and for collaborating with musicians from outside the classical music sphere. The quartet has also founded the Stillwater Music Festival in 2006 to serve as a place to unveil new repertory and collaborations. In 2010, the quartet was invited to play at the SXSW Festival in Austin, TX, which was also broadcast live on NPR. They are the only classical performers to have been invited to play at the festival to date. Brooklyn Rider made their Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall debuts in 2011.

Our friends at NPR Music have credited Brooklyn Rider with “recreating the 300-year-old form of string quartet as a vital and creative 21st-century ensemble.” The group is known for its multifaceted yet cohesive recordings and performances that combine a diverse collection of works by jazz pianist Vijay Iyer, singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane, and they were chosen by the noted American composer Philip Glass to record his complete string quartets in 2011.

The title of Brooklyn Rider’s sixth album, A Walking Fire, is taken from a poem by the 13th-century poet Rumi. “A Walking Fire” is also the title of the final movement of one of the pieces on the album, written by Brooklyn Rider violinist Colin Jacobsen, titled Three Miniatures For String Quartet. The album also includes works by the Russian composer and violinist Lev ‘Ljova’ Zhurbin and Bela Bartók.

Set List:

  • “A Walking Fire”
  • “The Muse”
  • “Love Potion Expired”

Brooklyn Rider performs in the WQXR Cafe (Kim Nowacki/WQXR)

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