Brian Bolger, Pat Brunnock, Chien Buggle, Tomas O'Durcain
Photo by Laura Sheeran ©
The Dublin Guitar Quartet has dedicated its career with unwavering devotion to performing contemporary music, an aspect that makes the ensemble unique within its genre. With the help of eight and eleven-string guitars the quartet has created an original catalogue of arrangements by composers such Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Arvo Part and Gyorgy Ligeti.
"I normally hate arrangements of my work. They came to play if for me. It was terrific. Someone had already arranged it for three guitars and my publisher more or less turned it down. But the new one was really good."
In Performance at Shalin Liu, Rockport, MA.
The DGQ's work has brought the attention of some of the world's leading composers. Recent activity includes a release on Philip Glass's Orange Mountain Music label and a new commission by New York's Michael Gordon. The quartet performed alongside the Grammy award winning LA Guitar Quartet, Conspirare and the Texas Guitar Quartet in a premiere of How Little You Are by Nico Muhly in Austin, Texas in April 2015. The DGQ is also included on a recent recording performing Arvo Part's Summa. The quartet worked with the composer in making the arrangement and received guidance during the recording process. The arrangement is published by the composer's own publisher Universal Edition.
In Performance with cellist Ivan Moneghetti and Bassist Malachy Robinson
Backstage with composer Philip Glass
In 2010 the quartet were involved in a performance of Repentance for cello, guitars and double bass by celebrated Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina. The composer was present as they joined the Russian cellist Ivan Monighetti in a concert in St. Peter's Church, Drogheda. The DGQ's recording of this work was released on the LCMS label in March 2012.
In 2008, the quartet was honored to share the stage with legendary American composer Philip Glass in St. Patrick's Cathederal, Dundalk. The quartet’s 2014 release of the full set of Glass quartets on the composer's own label Orange Mountain Music peaked at No.8 in the US iTunes classical charts in 2015.
"A wonderful ensemble. The Dublin Guitar Quartet has carved a place for itself in the world of classical music. I am delighted that my music is part of their repertoire."
- Philip Glass
The DGQ are developing the electric side of the guitar quartet repertoire with works like Nagoya Guitars and Electric Counterpoint by Steve Reich, and a recent commission for electric guitar quartet, Amplified by Michael Gordon. This was premiered at the David Lang/Bang on a Can curated festival of new music at the National Concert Hall, Dublin in February 2015. The US premiere took place at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) in December 2017.
Rehearsing Amplified with composer Michael Gordon
In Performance at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM)
Other performance highlights include a four-city tour of Colombia and five tours of North American 2013 - 2016. The DGQ have also performed at the prestigious chamber music venue, Wigmore Hall in London and the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. They have also performed in many of the leading venues in the US including Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Philips Collection Washington, Celebrity Series Boston, Symphony Space and the Lincoln Centre in New York and Shalin Liu, Rockport MA.
"An extraordinary achievement. It's quite wonderous"
In performance at Longwood Gardens, PA.