Biography

Biography

Akhtamar, an Armenian legend. The name of the quartet is a reference to the Armenian Miniatures by Komitas/Aslamazyan, which the ensemble has performed with passion since its foundation.

Formed in Brussels in 2014, the ensemble was one of the six quartets selected for the “tremplins jeunes quatuors” of Paris’ Philharmonie in 2016 and in the same year won the second prize in the Musiq’3 festival. In 2021 the quartet was awarded the third prize of the International Johannes Brahms Competition

The Akhtamar Quartet performs in prestigious concert halls and festivals all around Europe: Radio France Festival in Montpellier, the Concertgebouw in Bruges (Be), the MonteLeón Festival (Sp), as well as venues in Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the Baltic States… and of course in Armenia.

In 2020, the quartet released its first CD: légende arménienne. The label Cypres Records produced the recording of Komitas’ miniatures and “un quatuor arménien” by Eugenie Alecian, dedicated to the Akhtamar Quartet. Regularly broadcast on national radios (Musiq’3, France Musique, SWR2 in Germany…), légende arménienne has been rewarded with four stars by the prestigious BBC Music Magazine and Classica Magazine, and is one of the five nominees in the classical music category of the Octaves de la Musique 2021.

The Akhtamar Quartet is very keen on working with contemporary composers. Several composers such as Roger Boutry, Eugénie Alécian, Jan Kuijken and Judith Adler de Oliveira have asked the musicians to create and record their works.

The quartet attaches great importance to bringing classical music everywhere and to everyone. They have several sets which they perform in establishments like schools, hospitals, homes and psychiatric institutes. This activity has also won recognition since The Dream Makers, a show for young audiences, is a finalist in the YAM awards 2021 (Young Audiences Music). 

From this impulse were born several solidarity projects that received important support: Music 4 Armenia, a tour of twenty free concerts in Armenia after the war in the fall of 2020; Harmonies of Dreams, a series of concerts and shows for patients in psychiatric hospitals in Belgium, organized in collaboration with the health care professionals.

The ensemble is part of ProQuartet before joining the ECMA. It also has the privilege of attending courses at the Joseph Haydn Institut at the University of Music in Vienna.

The Akhtamar Quartet is supported by the Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles, Wallonie-Bruxelles International, the Concertgebouw Bruges, Le Dimore del Quartetto, the Boghossian Foundation and the National Center of Music (France).

Logo Marija Schouman