Da Vinci Quartet Disbands

Classic Arts News   Da Vinci Quartet Disbands
The Denver-based chamber-music ensemble Da Vinci Quartet has decided to disband after 24 seasons of performance.

The group cited a combination of financial constraints and frequent musician turnover as reasons for the decision. Earlier this year, the quartet advertised a vacancy in its viola position, and during the hiring process Susan Jensen, the ensemble's second violinist, also resigned.

Katharine Knight, who with Jerilyn Jorgensen founded the quartet, said in a statement, "A string quartet requires an intimate connection among the players. But that's a relationship dynamic that can't be developed overnight."

The problem, according to Knight, is at least in part financial. "Jeri and I came to realize that when financial constraints don't allow you to retain quality players over a period of time, you start to compromise your artistic vision. So we decided it was better to end this chapter of our musical careers on a high note."

The quartet performed in a number of different venues in Denver and Colorado Springs, and had subscription series at the University of Denver's Lamont School of Music and Colorado College. Its accomplishments include performing the complete cycle of Beethoven string quartets, commissioning new works, and reviving neglected works by women composers.

"In the world of chamber ensembles, 24 consecutive seasons is a very successful run," Jorgensen said. "We have no regrets."

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